Friday, 25 May 2012
Back on a train again yesterday morning, waiting to go to London for a Hawk and Owl Trust meeting, the weather forecast had predicted the hottest day of the year in London, great! I knew I was going to be sitting in an office while the weather was glorious outside, however having said that it was raining on the way to the station. I had to leave much earlier than usual because the Olympic torch was going through Gloucester, oh joy! I then discovered to my even greater joy that having been incredibly organised the day before when waiting for some people at to arrive at the station, I bought my tickets including the car park and the tube, I left them on the kitchen table so had to start again. Not an auspicious start to the day.
Leaf is lame, I am not sure what is wrong, she has been to the vet, but is very stiff in her back legs, it is not a disc, which I am told terriers are prone to, but probably a muscle strain, but still sad to see, she is on pills and sleeping in my bed and has been told not to run about or play!! That is a challenge for a five month old puppy.
Holly is away on holiday, so everyone is covering for her, and Jan is away for two days as well – both on our 45th anniversary weekend!!!!!!!!!!!! However we are coping brilliantly as usual!! The new website is moving on slowly, I now appreciate how much work Linda did over the years, and NO Linda, it was not three years wasted, it did a great job and much of it is moving over to the new one!! Things have to change and move forward, this will be the sixth website change, and will help us in the future as did all the other ones done by good and much appreciated friends in the past. Adam Bloch is holding me together right now, as I try to get stuff done, but as my life is very fragmented and it is hard to get to sit at the computer without interruptions. However we will get there, we always do!
At the moment I have to admit to being amazed that AHVLA/DEFRA are initiating a survey/monitoring research programme to see what damage our Common Buzzard is causing the shooting fraternity in affecting their pheasants. Recently I had to fight to be able to keep alive and use at the Centre two injured wild buzzards, the reason AHVLA did not want to allow this and let the Buzzards have a life, was that I wanted to use them for commercial purposes  - that would be education!

Shooting on the other hand is totally commercial. Forty million pheasants are released every year in the UK, shooters will all admit that far more pheasants are killed by cars than those killed by all birds of prey put together, are we going to have applications to shoot drivers next I wonder? They also admit that they probably shoot less than half the 40 million birds put out there! One of the excuses for wanting to kill buzzards is under the welfare of animals act, i.e. it is illegal to upset and scare their pheasants and so they should be able to shoot the culprit, well hang on a minute, sending a whole load of men and dogs to chase them through the woods and try to make them fly, and then shoot the bejesus out of them!!!!!!!!!!!! I think that might well count and upsetting and scaring for them.
Yet the government who are now telling us they are going to charge us £68 per captive bred bird to give us an Article 10 certificate to recover their full costs (shame the service is so bad for the money) because we are commercial, are going to fund it. This study will cost the taxpayer – that is you and I, £400,000 – nearly half a million pounds and they intend to remove some buzzards (how and where one wonders) and destroy nests – for which if you and I did it, we would be seriously breaking the law and could end up in prison.
To have any effect on the wild buzzard population, thousands would have to be killed. Removing a few will just make territories available for the ones that don’t have one. So when more birds move in are they going to be killed and then the next pair and the next pair – leaving a desert of raptors  for pheasants? It’s insane, hypocritical and a complete waste of time and money.

A completely commercial activity is going to be funded to make sure that they can continue to be commercial. So one law for one commercial activity and another for another, – that is pure hypocrisy and I do not like it. Now I realise that some people have concerns about Lapwing, Curlew, Oyster Catchers and so on having their young taken by Buzzards, but my main beef here is the fact that Defra are supporting a commercial activity on one hand and actively hampering another on the other. Ah well, this is bound to make me even more popular than usual, but I am afraid it has to be said.
On a more cheerful note, the weekend is going to be lovely, we have wine, (bring mugs please) you need to bring the picnics (you can bring enough for us too if you like!) the dogs are ready and waiting, we have games organised for those who would like to partake, we have nine ducklings on the pond – yup, wild tufted ducks in a bird of prey centre – amazing – lots of great birds to fly for you, baby owls starting to come out and play, and we celebrate our actual 45th birthday this weekend, come and join us!


sue hyde said...

With rather a lot of morons on the road I rather like the idea of culling some car drivers!! Lol


I have to say that keeping a weblog can at times become compulsive and at other times a chore. Sometimes I am berrated for not keeping it up and sometimes I get wonderful comments from people who follow the news of the Centre.

It is fun to share the daily goings on here, some good and some bad, some funny and some sad, but all a part of our daily lives.
And as I said before its a pretty cool to be here and it is a great place to visit, you should try coming and watching the birds and meeting the staff and of course the dogs.

An interesting video on Lead

An interesting video on Lead

I find it staggering that people who want to hunt don't see the value in changing their ammunition from lead to a safer product. We have stopped using lead in petrol, in paint, in our water pipes, but they still want to use lead - ah well, apparently eating it not only kills birds but leads to reduced intelligence in humans......................

NO ONE is asking you to stop legal and genuine hunting, they are just asking you to change your ammunition!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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