Wednesday 28 April 2010
Hunting & shooting "almost universally good" for conservation
Of course we knew it already, but it's good to have it confirmed by 40 of Britain's leading scientists in a book so important it's being called "the Domesday book of British wildlife".
Silent Summer provides a complete picture of Britain's wild animals and plants, charting the decline of many of our farmland birds, hares, voles, butterflies and other insects, due largely to the sweeping changes in farming and loss of habitat since 1957. Sir David Attenborough says in the foreword: "This book... gives us a benchmark. It is invaluable now and in the future it will be irreplaceable."
And "controversially" Robin Sharp, Chair Emeritus of the International Union for Conservation of Nature, says that "field sports ... have been almost universally good for the hunted species and the non-hunted, non-predators that thrive in the same habitat".
"...those who hunt and / or shoot provide significant conservation benefits," he says, going on to call on hunters and shooters to make more effort to explain the benefits of their activities to conservationists, policy-makers and the public.
"Overwhelmingly the target species for field sports have fared well over the last century ... More game-keeping, game crops and habitat management would undoubtedly achieve even more."
Something you might want to point out next time some animal rights numpty is whining on about saving the planet by going vegan and banning everything in sight.
The Telegraph published an excellent review of the book here.