Upland raptor conference, Sheffield, September 2016

Raptor conference poster

This looks like it’ll be fun.

The programme includes some interesting speakers with equally ‘interesting’ presentation titles. We’re particularly looking forward to:

Stephen Murphy (Natural England): Hen Harrier Population Dynamics. Stephen has been given a 30 minute slot to explain that when hen harriers are illegally killed on grouse moors, their population disintegrates to virtual breeding extinction.

Adrian Jowitt (Natural England): DEFRA’s 2016 Hen Harrier Plan. Adrian has been given a 25 minute slot to explain the actual details of this non-plan. Quite a tall order.

Philip Merricks (Hawk & Owl Trust): The Hawk & Owl Trust’s Involvement in the Hen Harrier Recovery Action Plan. Perhaps Philip will use his slot to explain why the H&OT is still involved in the outrageous brood meddling scheme, even though one of their supposed “immoveable provisos” was breached this spring (see here).

Rhodri Thomas (Peak District National Park Authority): The Peak District’s Raptors Project – Conservation in Action. It looks like the person writing the programme has inserted an erroneous space in Rhodri’s presentation title; surely it should read Conservation Inaction, because the Peak District’s Birds of Prey Initiative has failed to meet every target set (see here) and has been totally silent on recent, local, high profile raptor persecution crimes (e.g. see here and here).

Tim (Kim) Baynes (Scottish Land & Estates): Scottish Initiatives. Those Scottish ‘initiatives’ will no doubt include repeated attempts to discredit the scientific data showing the extent of raptor persecution on driven grouse moors (here), repeated denials that raptor persecution is a big problem on grouse moors in Scotland (here), and fronting a propaganda campaign about the ‘benefits’ of driven grouse shooting (here).

Fortunately, there are others speakers lined up to cut through the spin, including Mark Avery, Pat Thompson, and Alan Fielding.

The conference is open to the public so if you have the slightest interest in raptor persecution in the British uplands, this would be a good one to attend.

The conference programme can be downloaded here:


You can register for the conference online here.

See you there!

It’ll be interesting to see how many people will have signed the e-petition to ban driven grouse shooting by then. It’ll be ten days away from its closing date. 53,000+ people have signed so far. If you’re not one of them, PLEASE SIGN HERE


2 Responses to “Upland raptor conference, Sheffield, September 2016”

  1. 1 nirofo
    July 8, 2016 at 8:14 pm

    How do these numpties get their jobs? I’m surprised Philip Merricks is still clinging on to the ridiculous Hen Harrier Recovery Action Plan, or for a better description (Brood Meddling Scheme), I thought he would have stayed under the woodwork for some considerable time after all the flak he’s received over this barmy non starter of a scheme. As for Tim (Kim) Baynes, who’s he, what does he know about Harrier recovery, oh, I forgot, he’s the one that knows first hand that if the grouse shooting estates stopped killing Hen Harriers they would start to recover naturally without any fictitious assistance from anybody?

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