11
Aug
16

40 eagles, 10 years, 0 prosecutions

In April 2012, we wrote an article called ’21 eagles, 6 years, 0 prosecutions’ (see here).

In September 2012, we updated it and called it ’26 eagles, 6 years, 0 prosecutions’ (see here).

In July 2013 we updated it again. This time, ’27 eagles, 7 years, 0 prosecutions’ (see here).

In December 2013 we had to do another update: ‘31 eagles, 7 years, 0 prosecutions’ (see here).

In April 2014 we had to do another update: ’32 eagles, 8 years, 0 prosecutions’ (see here).

Fearnan Angus Glens Dec 2013 - Copy

After this morning’s news (here) that eight young satellite-tagged golden eagles have ‘disappeared’ on grouse moors in the Monadhliath Mountains over the last five years, we thought it was time for another update. This time it’s called: ’40 eagles, 10 years, 0 prosecutions’.

36 of these 40 eagles have either been found dead on, or have ‘disappeared’ on, Scottish grouse moors. (The other 4 have either died or have ‘disappeared’ in other habitat types).

Three of these 40 eagles have ‘disappeared’ in 2016. So much for the grouse-shooting industry claiming that they’ve cleaned up their act and that persecution is a thing of the past. The tactics of how to kill an eagle have clearly changed (see here) but the persecution continues.

As before, a number of eagles included in this list (16 of them, to be precise) may not be dead. However, they are included here because their satellite tags unexpectedly stopped functioning (i.e. they’d been transmitting perfectly well up until the eagles’ last known location, often a known persecution hotspot). Two further satellite-tagged eagles (‘Angus’ and ‘Tom’) are not included in this list as although their transmitters stopped functioning, there had been recognisable problems with their tags prior to the final transmissions and so the benefit of the doubt has been applied.

Many of these listed eagles from recent years have only been discovered because the eagles were being satellite-tracked. Much kudos to the dedicated teams of fieldworkers who have put in hours and hours of skilled hard work to allow this to happen. Obviously there are many other eagles out there that have not been sat-tagged and on the balance of probability will have been killed at the hands of the game-shooting industry. 40 eagles in the last 10 years is the bare minimum. The number of prosecutions (zero) is indisputable.

MAY 2006: A dead adult golden eagle was found on the Dinnet & Kinord Estate, near Ballater, Aberdeenshire. Tests revealed it had been poisoned by the illegal pesticide Carbofuran. Grampian Police launched an investigation. No prosecution.

JUNE 2006: A dead golden eagle was found on Glen Feshie Estate in the Cairngorms. Tests revealed it had been poisoned by the illegal pesticide Carbofuran. Northern Constabulary launched an investigation. No prosecution.

AUGUST 2007: A dead adult female golden eagle was found on an estate near Peebles in the Borders. She was half of the last known breeding pair of golden eagles in the region. Tests revealed she had been poisoned by the illegal pesticide Carbofuran. Lothian & Borders Police launched an investigation. No prosecution.

NOVEMBER 2007: Tayside Police received a detailed tip-off that a young male white-tailed eagle (known as ‘Bird N’) had allegedly been shot on a grouse moor estate in the Angus Glens. The timing and location included in the tip-off coincided with the timing and location of the last-known radio signal of this bird. The eagle has not been seen again. With no carcass, an investigation isn’t possible.

MAY 2008: A one year old male white-tailed eagle hatched on Mull in 2007 and known as ‘White G’ was found dead on the Glenquoich Estate in the Angus Glens. Tests revealed he had been poisoned by an unusual concoction of pesticides that included Carbofuran, Bendiocarb and Isofenphos. A police search in the area also revealed a poisoned buzzard, a baited mountain hare and 32 pieces of poisoned venison baits placed on top of fence posts on the neighbouring Glenogil Estate. Laboratory tests revealed the baited mountain hare and the 32 poisoned venison baits contained the same unusual concoction of highly toxic chemicals that had killed the white-tailed eagle, ‘White G’. No prosecution.

JUNE 2009: An adult golden eagle was found dead at Glen Orchy, Argyll, close to the West Highland Way. Tests revealed it had been poisoned by the illegal pesticide Carbofuran. Strathclyde Police launched a multi-agency investigation. Three years and 3 months later, estate employee Tom McKellar pled guilty to possession of Carbofuran stored in premises at Auch Estate, Bridge of Orchy and he was fined £1,200. No prosecution for poisoning the golden eagle.

JULY 2009: A two year old female golden eagle known as ‘Alma’ was found dead on the Millden Estate in the Angus Glens. Tests revealed she had been poisoned by the illegal pesticide Carbofuran. Alma was a well-known eagle  – born on the Glen Feshie Estate in 2007, she was being satellite-tracked and her movements followed by the general public on the internet. Tayside Police launched an investigation. No prosecution.

AUGUST 2009: A young white-tailed eagle was found dead on Glenogil Estate in the Angus Glens. Tests revealed it had been poisoned by the illegal pesticide Carbofuran. Tayside Police was criticized in the national press for not releasing a press statement about this incident until January 2010. No prosecution.

MAY 2010: #1 of three dead golden eagles found on or close to Skibo Estate, Sutherland. Tests revealed they had been poisoned; two with Carbofuran and one with Aldicarb. Northern Constabulary launched a multi-agency investigation. One year later (May 2011), Sporting Manager Dean Barr pled guilty to possession of 10.5 kg of Carbofuran stored in premises at Skibo Estate. No prosecution for poisoning the golden eagle.

MAY 2010: #2 of three dead golden eagles found on or close to Skibo Estate, Sutherland. Tests revealed they had been poisoned; two with Carbofuran and one with Aldicarb. Northern Constabulary launched a multi-agency investigation. One year later (May 2011), Sporting Manager Dean Barr pled guilty to possession of 10.5 kg of Carbofuran stored in premises at Skibo Estate. No prosecution for poisoning the golden eagle.

MAY 2010: #3 of three dead golden eagles found on or close to Skibo Estate, Sutherland. Tests revealed they had been poisoned; two with Carbofuran and one with Aldicarb. Northern Constabulary launched a multi-agency investigation. One year later (May 2011), Sporting Manager Dean Barr pled guilty to possession of 10.5 kg of Carbofuran stored in premises at Skibo Estate. No prosecution for poisoning the golden eagle.

JUNE 2010: #1: Leg rings with unique identification numbers that had previously been fitted to the legs of four young golden eagles in nests across Scotland were found in the possession of gamekeeper James Rolfe, during a multi-agency investigation into alleged raptor persecution at Moy Estate, near Inverness. It is not clear how he came to be in possession of the rings. The bodies of the eagles from which the rings had been removed were not found. No further action was taken in relation to the discovery.

JUNE 2010: #2: Leg rings with unique identification numbers that had previously been fitted to the legs of four young golden eagles in nests across Scotland were found in the possession of gamekeeper James Rolfe, during a multi-agency investigation into alleged raptor persecution at Moy Estate, near Inverness. It is not clear how he came to be in possession of the rings. The bodies of the eagles from which the rings had been removed were not found. No further action was taken in relation to the discovery.

JUNE 2010: #3: Leg rings with unique identification numbers that had previously been fitted to the legs of four young golden eagles in nests across Scotland were found in the possession of gamekeeper James Rolfe, during a multi-agency investigation into alleged raptor persecution at Moy Estate, near Inverness. It is not clear how he came to be in possession of the rings. The bodies of the eagles from which the rings had been removed were not found. No further action was taken in relation to the discovery.

JUNE 2010: #4: Leg rings with unique identification numbers that had previously been fitted to the legs of four young golden eagles in nests across Scotland were found in the possession of gamekeeper James Rolfe, during a multi-agency investigation into alleged raptor persecution at Moy Estate, near Inverness. It is not clear how he came to be in possession of the rings. The bodies of the eagles from which the rings had been removed were not found. No further action was taken in relation to the discovery.

JUNE 2010: A golden eagle was found dead on Farr & Kyllachy Estate, Inverness-shire. Tests revealed it had been poisoned by the illegal pesticide Carbofuran. Northern Constabulary apparently did not search the property until July 2011. No prosecution.

JUNE 2010: A white-tailed eagle was found dead on Farr & Kyllachy Estate, Inverness-shire. Tests revealed it had been poisoned by the illegal pesticide Carbofuran. Northern Constabulary apparently did not search the property until July 2011. No prosecution.

DECEMBER 2010: A decomposing carcass of a white-tailed eagle was found and photographed on Logie (Lochindorb) Estate, Morayshire. It was reported to Northern Constabulary. By the time the police arrived to collect it, the carcass had disappeared. The police said they couldn’t investigate further without the body.

FEBRUARY 2011: The signal from a young satellite-tracked golden eagle ( ‘Lee’, hatched in 2010) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after a final signal from the North Angus Glens. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

MARCH 2011: The body of a young golden eagle was discovered on North Glenbuchat Estate, Aberdeenshire. Tests revealed it had been poisoned by the illegal pesticide Carbofuran. Grampian Police launched an investigation and raided the property in May 2011. A poisoned buzzard, a poisoned bait and a shot short-eared owl were found. No prosecution.

APRIL 2011: The body of a white-tailed eagle was found at the base of cliffs on Skye. The person who discovered it (a professional medic) considered it to have been freshly shot with a rifle, decapitated with a sharp implement and thrown from the cliff top. He took photographs and alerted Northern Constabulary and RSPB. There was a delay of two weeks before the now probably decomposed carcass was collected. A post-mortem was inconclusive. This incident was not made public until one year later after a tip off to this blog. No prosecution.

SEPTEMBER 2011: The signal from a satellite-tracked young golden eagle (‘Strathy’, hatched in 2010) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after a final signal from an Aberdeenshire grouse moor. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

NOVEMBER 2011: The signal from a one-year-old satellite-tracked golden eagle (#57124) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after a final signal from a grouse moor in the Monadhliaths. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

MARCH 2012: The body of a young golden eagle being tracked by satellite was discovered in Lochaber. Tests revealed it had been poisoned with the banned pesticides Aldicarb and Bendiocarb. Information about this incident was not made public until three months later. No prosecution.

MARCH 2012: The signal from a satellite-tracked young golden eagle (‘Angus 26′, hatched in 2011) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after a final signal from a grouse moor in the Angus Glens. This bird’s suspiciously damaged sat tag was found in the area. No prosecution.

MAY 2012: The signal from a young satellite-tracked golden eagle (#32857) unexpectedly stopped transmitting when the bird was north-east of the Cairngorms National Park. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

MAY 2012: The dead body of a young satellite-tracked golden eagle (hatched in 2011) was discovered near a lay-by in Aboyne, Aberdeenshire. The data from its satellite tag & the injuries the bird had when found (2 broken legs) suggested it had been caught in an illegal trap on a grouse moor in the Angus Glens and then removed, under cover of darkness, to be dumped in another area where it was left to die, probably a slow and agonising death. Information on this incident was not released until almost five months later, by the RSPB. It appears the police failed to properly investigate this incident as we understand that no search warrants were issued and no vehicles were searched. No prosecution.

JULY 2012: The signal from a one-year-old satellite-tracked golden eagle (‘Foinaven’) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after a final signal from a grouse moor in the Monadhliaths. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

OCTOBER 2012: An adult golden eagle was found shot and critically injured on grouse moor at Buccleuch Estate, near Wanlockhead, South Lanarkshire. The bird was rescued by the SSPCA and underwent surgery but it eventually succumbed to its injuries in April 2013. No prosecution.

MAY 2013: The signal from a two-year-old satellite tracked golden eagle (‘Angus 33′, hatched in 2011) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after its last signal from North Glenbuchat Estate in Aberdeenshire. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

JUNE 2013: A dead golden eagle was found under power lines on an RSPB reserve on Oronsay. This bird had been shot although it is not known whether this was the cause of death or an historical injury.

JULY 2013: The signal from a young satellite tracked golden eagle (‘Cullen’, hatched 2010) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after its last signal in Aberdeenshire. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

DECEMBER 2013: A two year old satellite tracked golden eagle (‘Fearnan’) was found dead on a grouse moor in the Angus Glens. Tests revealed he had been poisoned with the banned pesticide Carbofuran. No prosecution.

MARCH 2014: The signal from a one-year-old satellite-tagged golden eagle (#129002) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after a final signal from a grouse moor in the Monadhliaths. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

APRIL 2014: The signal from a young satellite tracked white-tailed eagle (the first fledged sea eagle chick in East Scotland in ~200 years) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after its last signal from the North Glenbuchat Estate in Aberdeenshire. Police raided the property a couple of weeks later. No prosecution.

OCTOBER 2014: The signal from a one-year-old satellite-tagged golden eagle (#107133) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after a final signal from a grouse moor in the Monadhliaths. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

OCTOBER 2014: The signal from a two-year-old satellite-tagged golden eagle (#119886) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after a final signal from a grouse moor in the Monadhliaths. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

MAY 2016: The signal from a less-than-one-year-old satellite-tagged golden eagle (#00000583) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after a final signal from a grouse moor in the Monadhliaths. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

JUNE 2016: The signal from a two-year-old satellite-tagged golden eagle (#129010) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after a final signal from a grouse moor in the Monadhliaths. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

JULY 2016: The signal from a two-year-old satellite-tagged golden eagle (#129015 ‘Brodie’) unexpectedly stopped transmitting after a final signal from a grouse moor in the Monadhliaths. A technical malfunction or another mysterious ‘disappearance’?

THE UNTOUCHABLES: 40; JUSTICE: 0

Cabinet Secretary for the Environment Roseanna Cunningham has responded to this morning’s news (read her statement here) by calling for an analysis of the satellite tag data from around 90 surviving and missing eagles “to discover if there is a pattern of suspicious activity“. It just beggars belief. We’ll shortly be blogging in more detail about her response and that of the Scottish Moorland Group, which is equally as fatuous.

In the meantime, please sign this petition (here) calling on the Scottish Government to introduce a licensing scheme for gamebird shooting.

And then please sign this petition (here) calling on the Westminster Government to ban driven grouse shooting.

ALMD

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31 Responses to “40 eagles, 10 years, 0 prosecutions”


  1. August 11, 2016 at 12:55 pm

    It’s a disgrace. Like most blood sports, they are untouchable it would seem. It’s not difficult to understand why when it is the so called upper echelons of our society that are responsible for these crimes. The police either don’t have the knowledge or manpower to deal with these incidents properly or (and more likely) they are part of the problem.

  2. 2 Jimmy
    August 11, 2016 at 1:00 pm

    Clearly a root and branch reform of police scotlands rural units is needed if these crimes against Scotlands Natural Heritage are to be tackled properly

  3. 4 Chris Roberts
    August 11, 2016 at 1:35 pm

    It is well past time to ban the vile practice of Gamekeeping, or to give them their correct title ‘Killers of our protected and non-protected wildlife’. This SNP government is proving to be as useless as Westminster in taking a stand against the gamekeeping criminals in our countryside.

  4. 5 tom
    August 11, 2016 at 3:31 pm

    One law for one, one for the other,

  5. 6 chris lock
    August 11, 2016 at 4:11 pm

    The law is not interested as senior police and judges go grouse shooting and they want to keep it that way, it will need a revolution. Chris Packham and Mr Dyer are doing good work though.

  6. 7 AnMac
    August 11, 2016 at 4:14 pm

    Chris Roberts talks of the Gamekeepers as having a vile practice. Is this same people that call themselves the Doctors and Nurses of the countryside.

    I am confused if we describe our countryside guardians in two completely different ways. Where then lies the truth.

    Thanks to RPUK the general public now have all the information required to make a good assessment of our countryside managers and all who are employed within the industry.

    We now await Roseanna Cunningham our environment minister in taking forward some real ‘action’ on the conclusion of her investigation to all of those disappearing raptors in Scotland.

    Perhaps I am too positive about that!

  7. 8 chris lock
    August 11, 2016 at 4:14 pm

    Chris Packham and Dominiq Dyer are doing good work, the trouble is a lot of police and senior judiciary are involved in grouse shooting which makes things very difficult.

  8. 9 Ros Berrington
    August 11, 2016 at 4:15 pm

    That made difficult reading and it is sometimes very hard to continue to comment on such grim details.However,I want to applaud R.P.U.K for their dedication and tenacity in amassing all this evidence against the shooting industry.In years to come,people will be shocked to discover the law enforcement agencies were so lacking in commitment and courage in fighting wildlife crime.At some point they will have to answer for there pitiful lack of care towards our native wildlife.After all, if this was people being poisoned in this way,imagine how differently these crimes would be investigated.

  9. 10 Michael May.
    August 11, 2016 at 4:50 pm

    They are out of control

  10. August 11, 2016 at 5:29 pm

    Giving the SSPCA extra powers would be a massive move in the right direction.

  11. 12 Peter Shearer
    August 11, 2016 at 6:50 pm

    Meanwhile one wonders how the plans to re-introduce Golden Eagles into south-west Scotland is going to get around the “there must be no persecution” stipulation in any re-introduction plan!

  12. 13 Nimby
    August 11, 2016 at 7:36 pm

    IF (ha) the shooting estates are ‘serious’ about cleaning up their act then would they have a problem with micro-chipping the gamekeepers (and or other estate workers)?

  13. August 11, 2016 at 7:46 pm

    The CA’s response is one an Ostrich would be proud to have written including the revealing comment that “finger pointing at the shooting community, based on no evidence, must be resisted”. No evidence? Can’t they read? See http://countryside-alliance.org/scot/campaigns-shooting/sca-joins-call-for-information-on-missing-golden-eagles

  14. 15 Merlin
    August 12, 2016 at 12:12 am

    Massive thanks to RSPB Scotland for releasing this information this week, bringing unwanted publicity onto the organised criminal gangs operating in the Scottish highlands, RSPB England where are the crime statistics for England, we already know of a dozen crimes in Yorkshire alone. What a wasted opportunity! As Mark Avery’s petition closes in on the magical 100,000 required will you be backing him by targeting and educating politicians who will be sympathetic to our cause, As an example of why I think this is very important I’ll remind you of the cynical remarks of Richard Benyon who was Environment minister when asked about vicarious liability for England
    On 30 June 2011, Labour MP Angela Smith (Penistone & Stocksbridge, South Yorkshire) asked the following question: Only two weeks ago, a gamekeeper was convicted for illegally killing birds of prey in my constituency. Is it not time to think about introducing a vicarious liability offence to ensure that landowners and estate managers supervise their gamekeepers more closely and more effectively?
    Richard Benyon’s response: There are very good laws in place to punish the illegal killing of any animal. If they are not being effectively enforced, they must be and we will take steps to make sure that happens. However, this is a good opportunity to applaud gamekeepers for the wonderful work they do in providing excellent biodiversity across our countryside.
    From what I can gather that more or less stopped the debate!
    I would also remind you Benyon also sneaked through licenses to kill Buzzards and refused to ban the possession of deadly poisons regularly used to kill Raptors
    The latest Environment minister Andrea Leadsom wants to lift the ban on fox hunting , she will want all the help she can get from anyone connected with fieldsports who in turn will want favors back from her
    Hitting the 100,000 mark might be winning a major battle but it is still a long way from winning the war

  15. 16 Andrew
    August 12, 2016 at 12:13 am

    Re the CA statement
    “Contrary to claims that transmitters are reliable, research papers published in 2013 studied three decades of wildlife radio telemetry and concluded that failure rates could be as high as 49%”
    Clarify that please as it could mean 30 years ago failure rates were 49%. Looking at 30 years of mobile phone technology and taking averages would not give anything like a clear picture of today’s technology.

    Is that the best they can do?

  16. 17 Andrew
    August 12, 2016 at 12:18 am

    I note the Ca website has omitted to post any information about the north Yorks pole trap/caution fiasco. Nice factual, indisputable information. I wonder why? NOT!

  17. 18 chris lock
    August 12, 2016 at 5:45 am

    The law is involved with much of the grouse shooting and the judicary are some of the guns so an uphill struggle

  18. 19 PC 1776 Josh Marshall Wildlife Crime Officer
    August 12, 2016 at 7:55 am

    The facts are indisputable that raptor persecution continues at an alarming rate. The issue with the transmitters is problematic, we cant say for sure what has taken place but the high level of birds being found dead through shooting, poisoning etc is completely unacceptable and ILLEGAL.

    You could definitely argue that resources for the investigations are thin on the ground, believe me they are here. In Devon and Cornwall as in the majority of other forces we do this as a voluntary role alongside our main role. I wish I could do it full time but the forces are stretched but that is not the fault of the officers on the ground but that needs addressing at higher levels than me and probably one for persons to lobby their MP’S about.

    I cannot believe that for one second though that these crimes are not being investigated because people believe that the high brass police shoot grouse. I cannot believe that is a factor and to the PC on the beat, this is irrelevant as a professional police officer. This would be a potential job loser to a constable, and with most having families, mortgages etc not to mention huge pride in the job its just not going to happen. I appreciate the frustration everyone feels with how these listed incidents have resulted in very little prosecution. But, do not let this frustration boil over into allegations that Police are corrupt or don’t want to investigate jobs properly. Anyone with issues over how something has been investigated can make a complaint and believe me officers know this happens and its not an enjoyable process therefore officers and their supervisors do their best to ensure every reasonable line of investigation is carried out within their current capabilities. Current capabilities being the key phrase as I have already discussed. I would love to be out all day pro-actively protecting wildlife but at this current time is not possible but I can assure that every wildlife crime that comes my way is fully investigated and I know having attended meetings at national level the passion is their also from other WCO’s around the country.

    To address the frustrations of the lack of prosecutions against individuals. I note a few here where persons have been convicted of possession of illegal poisons etc and has not resulted in prosecutions of birds found poisoned nearby. Again I appreciate the frustrations felt by members of the public and looking from afar you would think that this would be easy to do but the level of evidence needed to prove this is more than some believe.

    You would essentially need to capture this person in the act of setting the poison on the bait then monitor the bird that ingested that poison to see if it died. Who’s to say that it ingested poison at another location set by another person? That’s what any decent defence lawyer would argue. How do you prove otherwise. If you could do this then you have a really strong case of convicted a person of destruction of that bird through the poison set by them. But as you can probably appreciate this isn’t going to happen realistically.

    ‘Police raided a property – no prosecution ‘ Just maybe their was no evidence within the property? It happens all the time with drugs warrants, we go in, don’t find what we are looking therefore no prosecution goes ahead.

    That’s just one example and their are many others. Please be assured that we do care and we do want to do the job to the best of our abilities but due to the nature of these incidents and the actual level of evidence needed to take this forward to prosecution it is just not there. And that level of evidence is assessed by CPS and they in most cases, make the decision to prosecute at court.

    With more people out and about who are increasingly aware of wildlife crime it can only help in the prevention and detection of these types of offences.

    Cheers

    PC 1776 Josh Marshall
    Devon and Cornwall Police

  19. August 13, 2016 at 9:25 am

    These are the real criminals of the world. Fines can never undo crimes against nature. I wouldnt even put them in jail the answer is simple. You take away the licence on the land for shooting. Any land owner found found to have condoned this has more guilt than his staff. Take away the shooting rights. Simple.

  20. 23 Pat
    August 13, 2016 at 10:45 am

    Gotta hit them in the money folks…and find out who they are paying not to investigate

  21. 24 Derek Thompson
    August 13, 2016 at 2:01 pm

    Give the landowners 6 months in Barlinnie I’m sure the inmates there would dish out some real punishment.

  22. August 13, 2016 at 5:01 pm

    Grim reading and it’s obvious who is protecting who and it’s not the birds. The police are criminally negligent and are perverting justice to these culprits. One big cover up after another.

  23. August 13, 2016 at 6:00 pm

    I can not believe that the RSPB nor any of the anti fields ports organisations have been able to supply proof that any of the 40 eagles have been illegally killed, just make allegation s (unsubstantiated) that gamekeepers are responsible. It is a pity that they need to rely on innuendo to drum up support for their campaign to curtail legal field sports, The serving police officer makes valid and sensible points , allegations should not be made without proof and their time not wasted by activists seeking to further their own class driven agenda.

    • 27 Nimby
      August 13, 2016 at 7:41 pm

      So, in your expert opinion Mr Davies how were these birds killed? Presumably you subscribe to the views that scientific post postmortems are rigged? That tagged birds simply fall out of the skies and birds caught in illegally set pole traps fastened the traps themselves before committing suicide?

      Class drive agendas, there’s enough of them in places like westminster, conservationists stick to fact not fiction – ‘Sir’ offered up an excellent example of that when he tried to offer scientific reports by the BTO (who issued a press release challenging his ‘evidence’), but let’s be charitable – it could be all the toxic lead he’s ingested and all the spin he’s experience?

      Even Andrew Gilruth admits gamekeepers are to blame, so perhaps you should have a quiet word with him?

    • 28 Marco McGinty
      August 13, 2016 at 8:46 pm

      “I can not believe that the RSPB nor any of the anti fields ports organisations have been able to supply proof that any of the 40 eagles have been illegally killed, just make allegation s (unsubstantiated) that gamekeepers are responsible.”

      WTF! Did you read the article text? I’d suggest that you back and re-read the text, and you will soon discover that alongside those that have been shot or trapped, there are many that succumbed due to ingesting various poisons, namely Carbofuran, Bendiocarb, Aldicarb and Isofenphos. These poisons are mainly kept by two professions – gamekeeping and farming, so if you don’t believe that gamekeepers are committing these criminal acts, then I must assume that you are pinning the blame entirely on the farming industry. Or are you trying to suggest that these are naturally occurring poisons? Or, like many of your other nonsensical colleagues in the shooting industry, are you now trying to suggest that these deaths can be attributed to windfarms?

      And just to add to the growing evidence, why do you think that all of these deaths and disappearances occur on land managed for driven grouse shooting? The lower lying land in Perthshire and Fife holds White-tailed Eagles, yet surprisingly few of these birds, if any, have been found poisoned or shot. Would you care to explain such a discrepancy?

      “It is a pity that they need to rely on innuendo to drum up support for their campaign to curtail legal field sports,”

      No, that’s a lie. The petitions are to ban only the driven aspect of grouse shooting, or for the introduction of a licencing system for shooting estates in Scotland. It’s a pity that you can’t read or understand plain English.

      • 29 Nimby
        August 13, 2016 at 9:52 pm

        Marco, poor Mr Davies appears to be suffering delusional episodes so perhaps we might feel sympathy for him as the illiteracy might be a side effect of eating game with high levels of toxicity (lead and other gamekeeping associated chemicals)?

        BDGS rapidly approaching the 104,000 mark. At this rate with another 38 days left to run ….

        They ignore, then laugh, then fight and now we are starting the next phase;)

  24. August 22, 2016 at 7:07 pm

    Sadly until public pressure is applied to the landowners and their employees through publication of names and faces absolutely no progress will be made. Psychologically nothing hurts (influences) the human mind more than being publicly vilified and the naming of ‘such-and-such estate’ holds no fear for anyone.

    The names of the ‘guilty by implication’ estate owners with lists of vested interests (plc share holdings, businesses in the public domain, and the like) should be published. Then let public distaste take its course and let these people be the subject of public awareness. This is not the same as threatening recrimination, just making public the facts which can then be defended by evidence presented to counter these claims, if it exists. There is enough evidence here to shame half a dozen estate owners or businesses into defending their positions over these deaths. Who, for example, owns the Monadhliath estates where the most recent ‘disappeared’ have occurred?

    That the police don’t seem to be able (willing) to do anything substantive simply appears to those of us ‘not in the know’ as cronyism coupled with the centuries old habits of landowners, gentry and the justice coupled with a lack of budget and government-imposed targets for catching pick-pockets and speeding cars on the A9. Achieving appropriate policing and appropriate and applicable law is probably going to be tougher to crack than the stopping of the immoral killing of these birds, but it is the key.


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