In response to this:
Sent: 06 February 2018 07:39
To: FOI (NE) <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: RE: Bowland gull cull
Nearly three months ago you told me that the NE investigation into the Bowland Gull Cull was moving to its final stages and that I would be informed of its outcome. I have not heard from NE since on this matter. Please respond within one week to the original questions.
In addition, what plans does NE have for 2018 to issue licences for any culls of any gulls in the Forest of Bowland area?
I have just received this:
Dear Dr Avery
Thank you for your email.
I have been in contact with the Area Team and they have confirmed that whilst the information gathering process is complete the investigation remains ongoing and Natural England has not made a decision on its next steps.
Plans to issue licenses for the culling of gulls in 2018
Natural England interprets “plans” to refer to any requests for individual licences for lethal gull control in the Forest of Bowland area. We interpret “cull” to refer to any form of lethal control in the context the question has been raised. We currently have one application in the Forest of Bowland area requesting lethal control of herring and great black backed gulls in 2018. We have not yet determined this licence request. The timing of the decision for this licence application has been deferred until the end of March 2018.
Lesser black-backed gull are a bird listed on the General Licence. Landowners or managers possessing a General Licence must comply with the terms of this Licence and must also have consent from Natural England to carry out lethal control of this species where it is a feature on a protected site.
I hope the above is useful.
Well, it’s more interesting than useful. But it was quite quick – maybe this morning’s blog post which mentioned it helped shake out this information (but maybe it’s simply a coincidence).
Of course the Bowland Fells SPA qualified under Article 4.2 of the Directive (79/409/EEC) by supporting populations of European importance of Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus. But back then, it qualified for its Hen Harrier numbers too.
Someone wants to cull Herring and Great Black-backed Gulls – I see.