Wednesday Website of the Week No.8 – Raptor Politics

The WWOW this time is Raptor Politics, a website and blog devoted to raising awareness of illegal persecution of birds of prey.

It’s easy to think we live in a country where birds of prey are protected, and that all is well. But recent incidents make it quite clear that the law is not well applied, does not really go far enough, and punishments within the law are too weak to act as any real deterrent. It also seems to be staggeringly hard to make a persecution stick. In England, Hen Harriers in particular are in real trouble. Even the success stories like Buzzards are not safe, as we have seen before (when we had the ludicrous concept of public money being spent culling a protected species for the benefit of the profits of private shooting estates).

There’s a pretty well-funded and well-organised campaign against our birds of prey, and they tend to be pretty dishonest about their motivations. After all, if you are told that all this raptor protection (or corvid protection) is why songbird numbers are declining, it’s easy to think there is a case. But in reality, it’s classic ‘divide and conquer’, setting two struggling groups against each other, ignoring the real causes of decline.

I won’t go on much more about this, I’m sure I’ll be back on it the next time the government makes some wooly-headed decision that benefits their friends and damages our wildlife.

For now, let me just ehartily commend the webiste to you. Raptor Politics.

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I welcome thoughts, comments and questions, so please feel free to share anything at all. Thanks, David

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