Facebook braggers get caught out

dead sparSome people are just very, very stupid.

A couple of days ago someone called Steve R Godfrey posted a picture of a dead sparrowhawk on a private Facebook forum called Forester’s Hunting Community. This group is for those interested in air rifles and shooting. He included the following statement with his photograph:

This was stalking my friends racing pigeons. He asked for my services“.

In response, many, many group members wrote of their utter disgust and outrage at the inference that Godfrey had killed this bird. The group’s moderators banned Godfrey from the group and reported him to the police.

An update on the group’s Facebook page yesterday stated that Derbyshire police were actively investigating the incident following the high number of complaints that had been received from the shooting community.

Steve R Godfrey’s Facebook account appears to have vanished.

Kudos to the members of the Forester’s Hunting Community for reporting him and to Derbyshire Constabulary for following up.

neknominateAnother investigation has been launched after a video of a man slitting a deer’s throat and drinking its blood was posted on Facebook last month. The ‘stunt’ was allegedly part of the ‘neknominate’ craze where someone drinks alcohol, performs a stunt and then nominates someone else to take part. The video was posted by someone called Shaun Wilson from Newcastle. An article in the Newcastle Chronicle (see here) suggests that the person in the video is a gamekeeper and that he has been suspended from his position on a Northumberland estate.

The National Gamekeepers’ Organisation has confirmed that the gamekeeper is one of their members and they have apparently launched a disciplinary investigation. A committee hearing next month will decide whether the man’s actions are ‘relevant to gamekeeping and whether he has damaged the reputation or profession of gamekeeping’. Don’t hold your breath – this is the same organisation that thinks a conviction for possession of a banned poison is not enough to warrant expulsion from the organisation because ‘it’s not a wildlife crime’ (see here).


17 Responses to “Facebook braggers get caught out”

  1. 1 Jimmy
    March 19, 2014 at 11:28 am

    The killing of protected species is glorified on many British hunting forums. This might be an extreme example but its clear from postings on these forums that the killing of raptors and other protected species is far from a rare occurence

  2. 2 Chris Thorpe
    March 19, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    I am Admin on the foresters and just to shed light after that recent comment the killing of rare and protected species is an extremely rare occurrence and is not condoned by any of our 3400+ members as shown by our response to the hawk shooting, all hunting forums I am a member on of which there is 15+ every single one is outraged and shocked and downright sickened by this so to tarnish us all with the same brush and say it is far from a rare occurrence is completely wrong and unjustified. Not all hunters are bad and irresponsible for the most part we are all extremely responsible and members of BASC. So again all I say is don’t paint us all with the same brush we’re not all idiots nor will we be labelled as such.

    Regards Chris

    • March 19, 2014 at 12:47 pm

      Hi Chris,

      Thanks for your comment and thanks especially for your decisive and prompt action against Steve R Godfrey – we are impressed.

      • 4 Chris
        March 19, 2014 at 3:39 pm

        It’s a pleasure we want just as much as you to see this guy get what he deserves. His actions are in no way condoned by any of us and are downright disgraceful! I hope they throw the book at him.

    • 5 Richard Would
      March 19, 2014 at 12:48 pm

      Unfortunately, I have to agree with Jimmy. The practice of killing raptors illegally is rife. I am a shooter and was a member of the Pigeon Watch forum for some time. It was clear from some comments and reading between the lines on there that this was going on. Could it be proved? Of course not. They’re not stupid people. They act with impunity in remote areas with little or no possibility of detection. Nobody is saying that the majority of field sports participants do it, but to deny it goes on is plain silly.

      • 6 Chris
        March 19, 2014 at 3:43 pm

        I’m not denying people do it I’m saying that on any of the forums or shooting groups I’m apart of it is far from glorified or condoned people will do stupid illegal things but the shooting community as whole are against this and in an already struggling sport idiots like this make things so much worse for the majority of us. I know there are people who do this sort of stuff but my group for one anyone seen doing anything even close to illegal is reported and details are passed on and I can say hand on heart that any other group I’ve been a part of feel exactly the same.

  3. March 19, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    What a great response by the hunting community.

  4. 8 Dave Dick
    March 19, 2014 at 12:59 pm

    Good..now lets have a similar response, including passing details to the police, from within the gamekeeping community..any glance at this site alone shows the many, many examples of unsolved wildlife crimes in Scotland alone. There must be a lot of people out there with relevant information.

  5. 9 nirofo
    March 19, 2014 at 5:17 pm

    I’m sure many of the hunters / shooters in the UK are responsible people who would never condone any of the barbaric and illegal Raptor persecution that is so well documented and known to take place. However, I am sure that this is not the feeling of many of the shooting estate owners, in particular Red Grouse moorland estates who are only interested in maintaining large overstocked numbers of game birds on their land. In their short sighted wisdom they seem to think that the only way to ensure there are unnaturally high numbers of birds for the guns to shoot, is to make sure there are very low numbers of or no Raptors and other predators at all. Many of the gamekeepers on these estates have similar views or are encouraged to have similar views regarding the removal of all predators including Raptors from their estates and are more than willing to comply.

    • 10 Dave Dick
      March 19, 2014 at 6:18 pm

      Agree with all that..so perhaps its time that those responsible shooters started putting real pressure on the grouse moor owners?..How many grouse shooters know what goes on when they attend a shoot?..Some well placed questions about vermin control might get some surprising answers…..

  6. 11 Bonnie highlands
    March 28, 2014 at 9:28 pm

    There we go again this article started off about ah person shooting ah hawk because of hassling racing pigeons , but straight away it gets swung straight back round to grouse moor owners and gamekeepers . More to the point where is it your seeing all these raptors , waders and the rest of the wildlife? Correct managed uplands and lowlands with out them you would not see half of it .

  7. 12 nirofo
    March 29, 2014 at 3:45 pm

    Dear Bonnie highlands, your name belies the fact that the Highlands would be much bonnier if it were not for the Red Grouse estates destroying the natural habitat and the wildlife that would normally live in it for their own selfish personal gain. That wildlife also includes legally protected birds of prey.

  8. 13 Bonnie highlands
    March 29, 2014 at 6:31 pm

    Dear nirofo I understand that it also includes legally protected birds of prey , but why are they there ? Because managed uplands and lowlands produce ah sub stainable food source for them . So when it gets to the point that you do away with all gamekeepers and the food source runs out what do you propose happens then , foxes , crows , stoats and weasels running riot eating ground nesting birds and everything else leaving nothing for them to feed on .
    Oh how Bonnie it would be then ah land of Bonnie nothing !

    • 14 nirofo
      March 30, 2014 at 2:05 am

      The biological history of birds of prey goes back thousands if not millions of years, long before even the oldest shooting estate and it’s gamekeepers, or maybe there were gamekeepers back then! I suppose they had a real struggle to survive that long ago without the presence of gamekeepers to help them along, I mean to say, if there was no one to control their over population before the gamekeepers came along how did they manage to evolve into the highly efficient predators who put terror up every self respecting Red Grouses backside ???

      • 15 merlin
        March 30, 2014 at 9:43 am

        I bet thats why there’s very little wildlife in the Sahara, its nothing to do with the intense heat its because there’s no Gamekeepers there. generally speaking driven shooting is a minority sport, anything can be made to seem more significant when your living at the very heart of where all the hype is coming from, the sad fact is the unwillingness to accept proven facts and to carry on with their relentless persecution of protected species is going to eventually kill your sport off, the chairman of the NGO addmitted as much in an interview before this latest attrocity in shooting times, there,s a strong need to take off the I love Gamies tee shirts and start to route the so called bad apples, No comment to the majority of the general public is an admission of guilt

  9. 16 merlin
    March 29, 2014 at 11:31 pm

    strange how they were there before the gamekeepers and the gun came along, strange that they are there from pole to pole, yet acording to any one who shoots they are only there on keepered ground, you need to go to specsavers

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