It is almost exactly 3 years since we started the 2 bogs, a swamp and some islands blog to tell people about the little known but wonderful wetland National Nature Reserves in the central belt of Scotland. And yesterday we posted our 500th post, perhaps suitably to mark International Bog Day. Over time readers have increased, in the first 7 months of 2020 we have had the same number of visitors as all of 2019 – maybe a result of lockdown and people experiencing the reserves virtually. So far nearly 7000 visitors have read 12500 pages in 2020 (they are not all my mother), maybe not huge numbers but then we are talking bogs, moths and sphagnum not big, sexy wildlife like dolphins, seals, puffins and red squirrels (though we live in hope)! These reserves are not easy places to visit – they are all very wet and hard walking so the blog is a chance to taking the reserves to the people while keeping their feet dry.
The majority of our readers are in the UK but we have a big following in the USA and some regular readers in Canada, Hong Kong, Ireland, Australia and Denmark (hello to one and all). In fact, 85 countries have checked in to the blog but how many are actual people is difficult to tell. Some countries just illustrate the holiday travel of SNH staff who are desperate to re-read about what we are doing.
Our most popular post so far was one by renown local artist Darren Rees and his recent paintings of Flanders (here). This post was the closest we have ever come to going viral with about 600 views in 24 hours. It has to be said that most of this came as a result of Chris Packham tweeting about the post, so thank you to Chris, if you are reading, for helping to take the blog and the reserves to many new readers.
So the team would like to thank all of the readers and their comments..and also thank Jane Petrie, our long suffering blog editor who has to deal with a blizzard of typos. If you enjoy the blog posts do feel free to share the posts to spread the word. And we delighted to receive guest blog posts so if you have something about the 3 reserves that you would like to say…or photos to share,then please get in touch – you can email us on firstname.lastname@example.org making it for the attention of the Stirling NNR team.
So to badly paraphrase the Proclaimers, we will start to write 500 more. Watch this space.