24 May 2013

Buzzards killed to protect pheasants.

This is disgusting:

Gamekeepers are already responsible for the deaths of numerous birds of prey in the UK and this now seems to justify their actions.

I'm incensed by this but anger should be directed at the correct people otherwise its wasted. We need to know who gave the authority for this despicable act of vandalism. Natural England was formed in 2006 from an amalgamation of the countryside agency, English nature & the rural development services. David Milliband was Secretary of State for the Environment, Food & Rural Affairs during the formation.

They are a non-departmental body responsible for the protection & improvement of the natural environment ( including  the marine environment & geology).

Being a non-departmental public body they are independent of Government. However the Secretary of State for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs has the legal powers to issue guidance on various matters.

So, whilst I'm not a fan of any politicians as I think they're all a bunch of useless twats who've never lived in the real world, we should find out where our anger should be really directed.

The person whose name is on the authorisations is Dr Matthew Heydon. He is the principal specialist for wildlife management at Natural England and according to his LinkedIn profile he's been in the job since 1998. He is the one responsible for issuing licences permitting such actions

We need to get our facts right so we know where to direct our anger. Did Matthew Heydon take the decision himself or did the government intervene?

A natural part of our avifauna is being legally persecuted to protect an introduced species. Its unreal.
I recently found a Buzzard that had been shot in the eastern Cheshire hills where pheasant shooting is known to take place. I hazard a guess it wasn't a random attempt at killing a Buzzard by a moron with a gun just wanting to shoot anything that moves.

Buzzard with gun shot wound to lower belly, Wildboarclough, Cheshire.

Only a few miles away from this incident a pair of Hen Harriers, who'd tried to nest on the moors across the county boundary in Derbyshire  a couple of  years ago, were shot and the nest destroyed. Local birders say Short-eared Owls are similarly persecuted in the area. The quicker all gamekeepers are licensed and inspected the better.

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