Tag: cage traps

Nottinghamshire | Police investigation into killing of Buzzards

This news report from Nottinghamshire proves just how important it is for all of us to recognise a ‘crow cage trap’ when we see one. Depressingly, traps like these are legal when used correctly, but they litter the countryside and are especially common on grouse moors. They are used, as the name suggests, to catch corvids. A number of different traps exist: this is a ladder or letterbox type, and very simple to use. They’re often baited with a ‘call bird’, usually a corvid, which will have been trapped earlier and stuck inside this thing until the trap operator thinks it has done its job and is then killed. The decoy bird attracts the curiosity (or territorial aggression) of other corvids in the area. They will climb around the trap to explore it, find their way in through the narrow slats in the centre to get to the bird (or to food placed inside the trap), but be unable to get out again as their natural impulse to escape danger is to fly: with wings spread they can’t pass through the slats again.

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Guest Post | Love of upland moors soured by driven grouse shoots

“My love of upland moors soured when I moved to a part of the country where they seem to be used for driven grouse shoots. I used to pop up on moors looking for black grouse, stonechat, pipits, cuckoo, great grey shrike, raptors and corvids etc, and mammals like fox, weasel, stoat, hare etc. It became apparent very quickly that something was wrong, very wrong. The contrast between what I was used to and what I was now seeing was unbelievable.” Guest post by an anonymous contributor

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What motivates gamekeepers? That’s not the point…

It does seem, according to a recent PhD research paper, that the prevailing view that gamekeepers are out to tally up as many dead ‘predators’ as possible partly because they enjoy it might indeed be correct. After all, if you spend your working life laying waste to wildlife just so that your employer can sell tame birds to shooters getting their rocks off using live animals for target practice you’d better enjoy it. It would be an unbearable way to pick up a wage otherwise, surely. But is ‘what motivates gamekeepers’ really the point?

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Podcast: Crow Cage Traps

Wildlife persecution is a regrettable fact of life in parts of the countryside, particularly those areas managed for shooting. Much of it takes place just out of sight, but we can help tackle it if we know where to look and what to look out for. In this podcast, recorded ‘in the field’ in Scotland in May 2018, Charlie Moores visited a cage trap with a highly-experienced wildlife investigator to discuss these awful ‘tools’, used on many grouse moors to catch crows (along with parrots, perhaps the most intelligent and sentient birds on the planet).

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