Search Results for: badger cull

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Our story In September 2018, broadcaster and naturalist Chris Packham launched ‘A People’s Manifesto for Wildlife‘ at an event in

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English Heritage, Trophy Hunting and Muntjacs

Trophy hunting. Whether you support it or not (and there are nuanced arguments to be had about land use and a local community’s ‘rights’ to exploit what they see as natural resources – or what the rest of us call sentient beings), at least it doesn’t take place here, in England, in the ‘nation of animal lovers’ as George Eustice, who as Defra’s Farming has always supported the slaughter of badgers for the dairy industry, said after the Queen’s Speech. Only of course it does. It perhaps first really came to people’s attention when notorious ‘hunter’ (‘hunter’ as in walks up to animals and shoots them) Larysa Switlyk flew into the UK from Florida in 2018, went off to Islay (a stunningly beautiful part of the world), gunned down some tame goats, and bragged about it on social media. And now thanks to Bedfordshire Against Trophy Hunting’s expose of English Heritage, we have yet another example of the gurning, smirking ‘hunter’ that so many of just really, really dislike…

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Snaring in the news again

Literally every week more examples of poor snaring practice are highlighted in the media. Two such examples have been highlighted across social media this weekend by the Hunt Investigation Team and Moorland Monitors. In the first, a badger was found trapped in a snare which was “wrapped around its neck”. In the second, a dog was caught on in a snare set on Access Land on Kinder – National Trust land in the infamous wildlife crime hotspot of the Peak District ‘national park’. Incidents like this are understandably always upsetting for the owners of companion animals, but let’s also acknowledge that the snare was set to do exactly what it did: trap an animal. Dogs and foxes are closely related. they share the same capacity for sentience, for fear, for feeling pain. Unlike a pet that is (under most circumstances) fed and looked after by an owner, a wild animal has no choice but to hunt to feed itself and its family though. Countless thousands of foxes are being trapped and are suffering in snares like this every week, drawn to the overabundance of prey that shoots ‘provide’.

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Operation Wingspan | A year-long wildlife campaign

In October this year a twelve-month campaign was launched to tackle wildlife crime in Scotland, based on the seven wildlife crime priorities set out by the UK Wildlife Crime Tasking and Co-ordination Group and the National Wildlife Crime Unit. All are extremely damaging to wildlife. In 2016 the UN estimated that the annual value of illegal wildlife trade was as high as $23billion, putting it behind only the drugs trade and human trafficking. Badger persecution – including baiting, illegal development, and sett blocking/destruction – is magnifying the already disastrous impact of the government sanctioned slaughter of badgers on behalf of the dairy trade. All the UK’s bat species are protected by law but developers are still destroying roosts and nurseries. Freshwater Pearl Mussels may seem like a more obscure concern, but this once common mollusc is listed by the IUCN as Endangered and the only viable population left in England is in Cumbria: there are more viable populations in Scotland but these are also under threat of decline. Hare coursing is an enormous problem for a species that is already suffering from huge declines because of agricultural intensification. Raptor persecution is – as anyone reading this site will know all too well – a massive problem on shooting estates, where protected birds including Hen Harriers are routinely eradicated to protect shooting profits. Cyber-enabled wildlife crime, an ‘umbrella’ term for crimes which either take place online or where technology is a means and/or target for the attack, is one of the fastest-growing criminal activities across the world.

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Guest Post | Birders for Ethical Conservation

“In 2018 three longstanding members and supporters of the RSPB wrote to the charity asking them to stop killing foxes, corvids and mustelids. While the authors recognised that the RSPB does, of course, carry out a lot of good and positive work, we believed that the RSPB’s stance on lethal predator control, in the name of conservation and protecting selected species (such as curlews), was unacceptable and wrong. Urgent change was required to implement policies and practices that are ethical and humane, and promote the use of alternative measures to killing.” Guest post by Birders for Ethical Conservation

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Wildlife Slaughter | Lebanon/UK – any difference?

A team working for the Berlin-based Committee Against Bird Slaughter (CABS) have just uploaded a series of images from Lebanon. They show the massacre of migrating birds. Slaughter on a scale that few of us get to see firsthand. The reaction on social media is a mix of bewilderment, rage, frustration, shock…How can this be happening? How can men (it’s almost always young men) line up to blow these beautiful, evocative birds out of the sky like this? How can they show such indifference to the suffering and death? Why aren’t the authorities doing anything to stop it? Meanwhile, here in the UK…

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Guest Post | Gamebird Shooting in Sheffield & South Yorkshire

“The sight and sound of a pheasant is almost ubiquitous in the fields around Sheffield and South Yorkshire. Any day out in the countryside will eventually involve the familiar coarse squawk as they dash out from the scrub. But why are they here and why do people care? There is growing unease about the presence of pheasants – and their associates, red-legged partridges – in the UK countryside. The prevalence of these birds is the end result of a deeply damaging and divisive shooting industry. Each year, more and more opponents are speaking out about the animal welfare issues and environmental impacts of this industry.” Guest Post by Adam Davies

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£48,525 | Wild Justice reaches Crowdfunder in 72 hours

Remarkable and wonderful news – Wild Justice have reached their latest crowdfunder already! Launched just three days with the aim of challenging the unloved and unwanted badger ‘cull’, the charity has raced through to its extended target of £45,000 in just 72 hours – thanks in part to a new £10,000 donation from an as yet unnamed organisation.

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