A year ago

A year ago this very important paper looking at the fate of satellite-tagged Hen Harriers was published in Nature Communications.


It’s open access and so you can read it but it does take quite a bit of reading.

Here is my post from last year which explains what the paper found – several people have told me that my explanation is pretty clear. A very concise summary is ‘Hen Harriers are killed on grouse moors – just like we all thought and knew they were’, which isn’t meant to diminish the importance, nor the cleverness, of the paper, I think it is a fine piece of work.

The RSPB have similar data, and it would be good to see those written up and published but they are very unlikely to show a different pattern.

For a government department which claims to be driven by the evidence I have seen very little evidence that DEFRA has fully assimilated these findings. Has Natural England? What has changed in the government or agency approach as a result of this damning study?

I’m sure it will come up if we ever get that debate on banning driven grouse shooting though.


1 Reply to “A year ago”

  1. It was indeed a very good and clear summary of the devastating data the paper contained and to an extent not widely enough acknowledged put the grouse botherers on the back foot. Yet here we are a year further on another year of lying PR from the botherers, another year of DEFRA’s disaster of a recovery plan. Another year of awful brood meddling, a sop to the criminals in the vain hope that they will finally mend their self-serving criminal ways and let the harrier be( next the Golden Eagle, Goshawk, Peregrine, Short-eared Owl, Buzzard or Marsh Harrier!) Well knock me down with a feather for most of them it has changed nought (or nowt as we say in Yorkshire). Harriers are still, far too often, dying on our grouse moors in ways that are only too obviously criminal. At least 18 of them since 2018, despite claims of zero tolerance to crime. Quite clearly an awful lot of the grouse botherers and their criminal employees haven’t got the message, probably never will, won’t heed the calls to desist, even from their own side.
    There is and has been for sometime only one answer, kick the bastards where it hurts until they stop moving by banning their foul effing pastime, hobby, business or perversion of hunting take your pick of names. WE KNOW IT MAKES SENSE, EVEN IN THEIR HEARTS THE SUPPORTERS OF OTHER OPTIONS KNOW ITS THE ONLY WAY, BAN DGS. no ifs buts or maybes.

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