Bill Makins was a visionary conservationist. Alongside farming his Norfolk property, Pensthorpe, he created a truly sustainable gravel extraction process creating one of the most bio-diverse nature reserves in England. Bill was interested in wildfowl and rare species since childhood. In the 1960s he spent time in Kenya learning about stockmanship of both birds and mammals. His passion took him the world over. Each destination brought new discoveries as well as rewards. Pygmy Geese and other rare ducks and geese from North America, Chile and Iceland arrived and thrived. Bill spent his life devoting his experience and enthusiasm to actively promoting the conservation of endangered birds.
Bill’s passion was very firmly focused on the Turtle Dove Trust (Charitable Trust No. 1186288) which he founded in 2019 along with Edward Pope and Chris Knights, to raise awareness of and to garner support for this unique species. Bill wanted to prove that captive breeding, and a highly active release program, would successfully secure the future of the Turtle Dove in the United Kingdom.
Sadly, Bill died peacefully on March 27th, 2022, aged 90.