Save British Birds of Prey from Persecution

  • by: Judith B.
  • target: Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, UK

Britain’s rarest birds of prey, including red kites, sparrowhawks and peregrine falcons, are being shot, trapped and poisoned in record numbers.  

This persecution might be completely illegal, but inadequate legislation in England makes it easy for gamekeepers to massacre any nuisance, real or imagined. The birds are being slaughtered because of a perceived threat to pheasants.

Whether or not the birds cause real problems is irrelevant. Britain’s magnificent wildlife should not be exterminated for the sake of a non-native species and a bloodthirsty hobby.

This said, the threatened raptors don’t cause significant problems. The UK has more than 2 million breeding pairs of pheasants. About 30 million more are raised artificially and released to live brief, pointless lives before being shot out of the air.

Vehicles kill more pheasants than all the birds of prey in the country ever could, yet the shooting industry is not lobbying for speed restrictions.

Scotland has liability legislation that makes such persecution more difficult. It’s long time that England followed suit.

Tell DEFRA to protect the UK’s rapidly disappearing raptors.

We the undersigned are dismayed at the numbers of raptors being illegally killed, mainly it seems by gamekeepers, and ask that you introduce liability legislation similar to that already in place in Scotland as a matter of urgency.

Aside from the ethical issues here, your job is to prevent such blatantly criminal activity taking place at all. Liability legislation would make it a lot harder for anybody to illegally kill the country’s rare, and supposedly protected, birds of prey.

Please demonstrate that you take your responsibilities as guardians of our countryside seriously, and address this unacceptable situation immediately.

Thank you for your attention.

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