As someone whose supposedly-environmental blog has drifted further and further into the surreal, I thought today would give me an excuse to assess how the rest of you in the sector do levity. So here is a quick round up of how all you environmentalists out there have welcomed what must be every PR department’s favourite day of the year, and every journalist’s nightmare:
First up, the Guardian, bless ‘em, put a little too much effort in by opting for something vaguely realistic, with Jeremy Clarkson jumping aboard their ‘Keep it in the ground’ climate change campaign. Or rather, a Jeremy Clarkson look-sort-of-alike. The ruse was ruined by that great April Fools’ Day staple, the journalist’s name as anagram. In this case it was Daisy Pofallor. If you’re going to go to all that trouble, why half-arse it like that? Clarkson hadn’t been in the news for about 12 hours, so I could totally have bought him doing this just to ensure he got his mug in the papers again.
From the blogosphere (and I hate myself for using that word), Jeff Ollerton (who writes a great blog, that is infinitely more informative on actual proper conservation-y stuff than mine) reported that Dodo’s are back! Hurrah! Except, they’re not. Obviously. Congratulations to Jeff for not spending too much of his valuable time on this and using it to make an actual point – and for not indulging in shoddy photoshopping of any sort.
An honourable mention to ‘Ireland’s Wildlife’ for this one about eco-terrorists releasing bears into Killarney National Park. Both topical, with discussions on rewilding gathering pace, and taping into a rich April Fools’ Day heritage of escapee animals.
The RSPB have announced that a squirrel is encouraging us to ‘Vote for Nature’ and buy lots of fluffy toys. Yes, it’s that other staple of April Fools’ Day; the link to a real, actual, proper thing followed by the smart arse comment ‘I see it’s April Fools’ Day again’.
But top marks for the day go to this beauty from Nature – Dragons might have been real after all! Real-looking author names, references and citations, and the masterstroke of this glorious graph, linking dragon occurrences in literature to climactic conditions. Gauntlet well and truly thrown down for next year:
What have I learned today? Well, how to spot an anagram of ‘April Fools’ Day’ at a thousand paces, for one. And that perhaps there is a niche to fill in environmental surrealism. Seriously, you guys need to up your game; I really had to dig just to scrape this short list together!