Autumnwatch – looking forward to the Hen Harrier update

Photo: Gordon Yates
Photo: Gordon Yates

When Springwatch ended (in the spring!) we were all trying to assimilate the fact that five male Hen Harriers had ‘disappeared’ from active nests in Lancashire and Cumbria.

Since then a highly experienced nest photographer, Gordon Yates, has written a Guest Blog here explaining how unlikely this is to happen (and the photographs on this post are by Gordon – nice work!

We’ve also seen lurid headlines blaming the RSPB for the nest failures –  and have succeeded in getting a correction and an apology from the Daily Telegraph on this subject.

I’ve suggested that it must be possible that those very birds were targetted by someone so that such headlines and stories could be produced.

And we’ve also seen another Hen Harrier body recovered on a grouse moor – in Scotland – Annie.

Our e-petition to ban driven grouse shooting wasn’t even in existence back then – it only came alive in late July – but since then we have gathered over 22,000 signatures to get a debate on the banning of driven grouse shooting.

When Springwatch ended a few months ago, we were promised an update on the Hen Harrier deaths and that update will now have to include the death of Annie too. I doubt whether the BBC will have the nerve to mention that there has also been an attempt by the Countryside Alliance to get Chris Packham sacked – but that has happened too.

Photo: Gordon Yates
Photo: Gordon Yates
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