The Lowry's set sail for the Caribbean
Eco-boat trip for one 'Land' lubber
By Jo Irving
A Devon conservationist lands herself a trip across the ocean to help bird life in the Caribbean.
Katharine Lowrie has worked for the RSPB in Exeter for the past three years, but now she and her husband, David, plan to sail to the West Indies to monitor the ocean's wildlife as well as help their Caribbean counterparts.
It's a chance for the newly-married couple - from Topsham - to spend more time together, painting an environmental picture along the way, before working with the conservation organisation Caribbean Birdlife.
The pair want to make the voyage as eco-friendly as possible on their former Norwegian fishing boat, Lista Light.
The ship's log records important data
It has been rigged up with solar cells, wind and wave turbines as well as a rowing machine to feed in to the battery system.
Once the couple get to Cape Verde they will cross the sea to St Lucia where they plan to island-hop, monitoring the seabirds and sea life.
Katharine said: "They have some fantastic bird life over there but they don't have any resources or skills to be able to record the data."
Ironically Katharine's maiden name was Land and she describes herself as "not a seasoned sailor - in fact I'm not sure if Dave realises I'm not just Land by name."
But with husband David's experience of sailing and their general enthusiasm, dedication and hard work, the pair believe they can make it across the ocean in time for a Caribbean Christmas.
They hope to set off in August 2008. Once in the West Indies Katharine wants to explore the opportunity of working with local schools.
"It would be great to have weekly lessons about the sort of issues and subjects prompted by our voyage."
The Lowries have not been daunted by the scale of their adventure and are determined the project they have set out on will help in some small way to conserve part of the planet.
last updated: 28/07/2008 at 12:36