Category: Blog Posts

Badger Trust “Government goes from badger control to badger annihilation”

Over the year that The War on Wildlife Project has been in existence we have covered the ‘badger cull’ in some detail, with articles, analysis and guest posts, plus multiple podcasts with leading campaigners against the cull including Dominic Dyer (chief-executive of the Badger Trust, which works to promote and enhance the welfare, conservation and protection of badgers, their setts, and their habitats). Like so many opposed to the cull we were hoping that the UK government was seriously looking at alternatives to simply slaughtering one of the UK’s most beloved and highly-protected mammals (through vaccination for example), but recent announcements from the government have ended those hopes. The disappointment and anger is tangible, but the fight will go on…

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Shooting industry plumbs the depths

Last week the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust posted a rather sober press-release about the EU’s ‘Historic vote to ban lead shot in wetlands’. The decision needs to be ratified by the EU Council, but the EU vote was, WWT said, choosing ‘health over poison’. Even hunters supported the move according to WWT. And why wouldn’t they, it’s an easy-win for them. Which brings us to Natural England’s favourite pro-shooting lobby group BASC…who have announced that they will in fact stand ‘against new EU restrictions on lead shot’…

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Functional extinction 101

A recent report suggested that sharks – hunted in such vast numbers that more than 50 percent of shark and ray species that have been fully assessed by the IUCN are Threatened or Near Threatened with extinction – are now ‘functionally extinct’ at 20% of the world’s coral reefs. But what does that mean? Are there now no sharks at one-fifth of the world’s coral reefs? And why might that matter anyway? ‘Functional extinction’ may be a term that is not – at the moment anyway – widely-known, but with a sixth mass extinction (humanity’s ‘war on wildlife’) seemingly imminent, it’s likely we’ll be hearing more and more about species that are considered to be ‘functionally extinct’.

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WWT | Historic vote to ban lead shot in wetlands

WWT has just announced that “EU countries choose health over poison in historic vote to ban lead shot in wetlands”. It’s important news – as WWT unequivocally puts it “A huge leap towards ending the suffering of millions of waterbirds from lead poisoning has been taken following a momentous vote to ban lead shot in and around wetlands” – and the shooting industry only has itself to blame. From an easy win they could have claimed years ago, as ever they appear to have been forced into falling into line with doing something ‘good for the environment’…

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NE lobbying for grouse industry

We were planning to write about how Natural England (NE) has morphed into a better lobbying group for the grouse shooting industry than, for example, the anaemic Moorland Association (see NE’s beaming self-endorsement of a smattering of successful breeding Hen Harriers which has been widely cut and pasted in much of the mainstream media), but as so often happens Raptor Persecution UK (RPUK) got there first and did it far better than we could. However, Tony Juniper’s leadership of Natural England seems to have been one of the most disappointing post-appointment ‘volte-face’ in recent conservation history…

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Yorkshire Post | Mural protesting raptor persecution

North Yorkshire. How sad that for many of us the very name of what is undoubtedly a beautiful and evocative part of the UK, has become synonymous with the illegal persecution of birds of prey. Persecution to protect Red Grouse which moorland landowners flog off to the ‘have gun, will travel, don’t especially care what we shoot, and don’t especially care about your missing Hen Harriers‘ crowd. It’s such a shame. It’s become so bad that even local newspapers like the Yorkshire Post (a daily broadsheet published in Leeds and covering the whole of what used to be Yorkshire as well as parts of north Derbyshire and Lincolnshire) appear to have become highly irritated that wildlife criminals are turning their corner of the country into a byword for raptor persecution.

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