Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Barnacle geese on Islay the forgotten cull

Whilst we have all been aware of the Badger cull in the South West of England and the backdoor efforts to continue Fox hunting the cull that is planned by the Scottish government in the Hebrides has passed largely unnoticed. Every year 40,000 Barnacle geese migrate to Islay to overwinter, that is about half the worlds population. For years the Wildfowl & Wetland Trust have been working with the locals, the geese have been managed by scaring them off certain crops on to areas set aside for them and this has been tolerated by the locals. The geese bring in a lot of money to the community through Ecotourism.

It has now been decided that their numbers must be reduced by 10,000 birds. Neither The Wildfowl & Wetland Trust or RSPB Scotland were consulted over the plans and both have submitted complaints the the EU. There is also the danger that in a cull of this size other geese may be shot in error, the endangered Greenland White fronted goose also winters within the flocks of Barnacle Geese.

On the WWT website Director of Conservation Dr Debbie Pain said:
“This is about finding a fair solution that works for farmers and for wildlife. It’s about resourcing farmers to be custodians of the countryside, and about finding out what works best in everyone’s interests, rather than shooting a significant portion of a species without finding out first if other methods are just as or more effective.”

Their full complaint can be read at   Goose Complaint

We all need to work together to try and stop this cull going ahead.


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