Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Ireland bans poisons

Credit where it's due, I saw this story on the Raptor Politics blog. Ireland has banned poisons for pest control, other than the regular rat and mouse baits. Story in the Irish Independent here.

Not surprisingly this is being hailed as a victory, not just for Ireland's birds of prey but also for Scotland - much of the poison used illegally in Scotland comes across the water. Raptor Politics is hopeful that supplies will eventually dry up, although I somehow doubt it will have any noticeable effect in the foreseeable future. Apart from anything else, anyone keen to kill birds of prey illegally will find a way.


Sooty said...

Hi James I find it incredible that almost everyone thinks that each new idea or law or rule will stop B O P deaths however much people dislike it the chance of catching someone who committed the crime is negligible and the saying more than one way of killing a cat springs to mind.The only way it will stop is changing peoples attitude who commit the crime and I find it incredible that RSPB members are happy to pay management fees on Scotland's west coast for Sea Eagles but butcher me on the forum if I suggest a similar scheme for large estates really your idea of course.In my opinion although no one else seems to agree is that the known numbers of B O P deaths is really the tip of the iceberg and my guess is that only 10% are ever found due to the wildness of the moors etc.

James Marchington said...

Hi Sooty, good to see you back here! Yes, I'm afraid you're probably right. It's impossible to know the true extent of the problem, but I'm sure we only see the tip of the iceberg. Plus there are so many factors that muddy the waters - rivals/enemies looking to get an estate or individual into trouble, the widespread use of poisons by farmers against foxes and crows (conveniently overlooked by the bird mafia) which catches huge numbers of BoP as collateral damage, idiots with guns who can't tell the difference between a pigeon and a peregrine... the list goes on. In fact the big commercial shooting estates should be the easy ones to deal with - it's the other lot that will be really difficult. And all the while, these raptor types imagine that shooting is some big conspiratorial 'industry' where we're all in it together and keeping schtum. Honestly, if they have so little clue, how can they ever tackle the problem? The silly thing is, their best hope is to talk to keepers, but they couldn't bring themselves to collaborate with the bogeyman they've created.

Alan Tilmouth said...

Isn't that exactly what RSPB and GWCT are doing at Langholm? (Talking to keepers and each other)

James Marchington said...

It'd be nice if the RSPB could refrain from trying to shaft shooting at every opportunity while they're doing it, but you have a point.

What makes me laugh is the nutcases that hang around places like Raptor Politics, accusing the RSPB of being in cahoots with gamekeepers!