Posts Tagged ‘Leadhills Estate

12
Mar
15

Leadhills Estate confirmed as member of Scottish Land & Estates

The Leadhills (Hopetoun) Estate in south Lanarkshire has featured regularly on this blog (see here).

Since 2003, 46 confirmed incidents of wildlife crime have been discovered either on or near to the estate, but only resulting in two successful convictions (2004 – gamekeeper convicted of shooting a short-eared owl; 2009 – gamekeeper convicted of laying out a poisoned rabbit bait). Here’s the list:

2003 April: hen harrier shot [prosecution failed – inadmissible evidence]

2003 April: hen harrier eggs destroyed [prosecution failed – inadmissible evidence]

2004 May: buzzard shot [no prosecution]

2004 May: short-eared owl shot [gamekeeper convicted]

2004 June: buzzard poisoned (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2004 June: 4 x poisoned rabbit baits (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2004 June: crow poisoned (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2004 July: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2004 July: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2005 February: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2005 April: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2005 June: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2005 June: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 February: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 March: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 March: poisoned pigeon bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 April: dead buzzard (persecution method unknown) [no prosecution]

2006 May: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 May: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 May: poisoned egg baits (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 June: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 June: poisoned raven (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 June: 6 x poisoned rabbit baits (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 June: poisoned egg bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 September: 5 x poisoned buzzards (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 September: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 September: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2007 March: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2007 April: poisoned red kite (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2007 May: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2008 October: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [listed as ‘Nr Leadhills’] [no prosecution]

2008 October: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [listed as ‘Nr Leadhills’] [no prosecution]

2008 November: 3 x poisoned ravens (Carbofuran) [listed as ‘Nr Leadhills’] [no prosecution]

2009 March: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2009 March: poisoned raven (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2009 April: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [gamekeeper convicted]

2009 April: poisoned magpie (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2009 April: poisoned raven (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2010 October: short-eared owl shot [no prosecution]

2011 March: illegally-set clam trap [no prosecution]

2011 December: buzzard shot [no prosecution]

2012 October: golden eagle shot (just over boundary with Buccleuch Estate) [no prosecution]

2013 May: shot otter found on estate [no prosecution]

2013 June: significant cache of pre-prepared poisoned baits found on estate [no prosecution]

2013 August: red kite found shot and critically-injured in Leadhills village [no prosecution]

2014 February: poisoned peregrine (Carbofuran) [‘Nr Leadhills’] [no prosecution]

For a long time, we’ve been trying to find out whether this estate is a member of the landowners’ organisation Scottish Land and Estates – an organisation that regularly claims to be fighting hard against raptor persecution. All our attempts to find out have been met with a wall of silence. We knew that Lord Hopetoun served on the SLE Board, so it was quite likely that his estate would be a member of SLE, but we weren’t able to find definitive evidence.

Well, we have now. Leadhills Estate has launched its own website (see here). It’s a spectacular example of how to conduct a public relations charm offensive – lots of info about how the estate is supporting the local community: providing a new home for the volunteer fire crew, lending a hand on Gala Day, engaging in a village clean-up for Christmas, and providing support for the Leadhills Miners Library. It brings a tear to the eye. There’s also plenty of encouragement for walkers to keep to the tracks so as not to disturb the wildlife – because Leadhills Estate really cares about wildlife.

Of most interest to us is a statement on the web site’s home page:

‘Leadhills Estate is a member of Scottish Land and Estates – an organisation which promotes the work of landowners and rural businesses undertake [sic] for the benefit of rural Scotland’.

Amazing. We’d love to hear how SLE justifies the membership of Leadhills Estate in their wildlife-crime-fighting organisation.

The Leadhills Estate website also includes a gallery showing images that visitors can expect to see when they visit this most welcoming of estates. Here’s another one for them – taken at one of many stink pits hidden away on Leadhills Estate (far from the tracks that visitors are encouraged to stick to). For those who don’t know, stink pits are used (legally) by gamekeepers in which to dump the rotting carcasses and entrails of dead wildlife. They set snares around the edge of the stink pit to catch (and then kill) any animals that may be attracted to the stench of death (typically foxes). This particular stink pit includes a few fox carcasses oh, and a cat. Nice, eh? Welcome to Leadhills Estate.

Leadhills dead cat stinkpit - Copy

 

 

07
Dec
14

New venue announced for 2015 Scottish Birdfair – hurray!

Scottish BirdfairRSPB Scotland has announced its new venue for the 2015 Scottish Birdfair – Levenhall Links, east of Edinburgh.

Thank god they’ve finally ditched Hopetoun House, the controversial venue that hosted the Birdfair for the last three years.

The controversy centred on Hopetoun’s relationship with the Leadhills (Hopetoun) Estate in South Lanarkshire – a driven grouse moor with a shocking record:

2003 April: hen harrier shot [prosecution failed – inadmissible evidence]

2003 April: hen harrier eggs destroyed [prosecution failed – inadmissible evidence]

2004 May: buzzard shot [no prosecution]

2004 May: short-eared owl shot [gamekeeper convicted]

2004 June: buzzard poisoned (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2004 June: 4 x poisoned rabbit baits (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2004 June: crow poisoned (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2004 July: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2004 July: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2005 February: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2005 April: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2005 June: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2005 June: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 February: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 March: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 March: poisoned pigeon bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 April: dead buzzard (persecution method unknown) [no prosecution]

2006 May: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 May: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 May: poisoned egg baits (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 June: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 June: poisoned raven (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 June: 6 x poisoned rabbit baits (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 June: poisoned egg bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 September: 5 x poisoned buzzards (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 September: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2006 September: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2007 March: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2007 April: poisoned red kite (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2007 May: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2008 October: poisoned buzzard (Carbofuran) [listed as ‘Nr Leadhills’] [no prosecution]

2008 October: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [listed as ‘Nr Leadhills’] [no prosecution]

2008 November: 3 x poisoned ravens (Carbofuran) [listed as ‘Nr Leadhills’] [no prosecution]

2009 March: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2009 March: poisoned raven (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2009 April: poisoned rabbit bait (Carbofuran) [gamekeeper convicted]

2009 April: poisoned magpie (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2009 April: poisoned raven (Carbofuran) [no prosecution]

2010 October: short-eared owl shot [no prosecution]

2011 March: illegally-set clam trap [no prosecution]

2011 December: buzzard shot [no prosecution]

2012 October: golden eagle shot (just over boundary with Buccleuch Estate) [no prosecution]

2013 May: shot otter found on estate [no prosecution]

2013 June: significant cache of pre-prepared poisoned baits found on estate [no prosecution]

2013 August: red kite found shot and critically-injured in Leadhills village [no prosecution]

2014 February: poisoned peregrine (Carbofuran) [‘Nr Leadhills] [no prosecution]

Why RSPB Scotland ever thought that holding their prestigious event at Hopetoun House was a good idea remains a mystery – we blogged about it extensively and the RSPB’s decision to stay there caused many visitors, exhibitors and speakers to boycott the event (see here for an overview).

So we’re delighted, as probably are many others, to hear that the 2015 Scottish Birdfair will be at a new venue – Levenhall Links – a place with no known links to driven grouse shooting or any type of wildlife crime. Well done, RSPB Scotland.

RSPB press release here

Scottish Birdfair website here

18
Aug
14

RSPB finally ditches Hopetoun House as Scottish Birdfair venue

Scottish Birdfair 2014 logoWe visited the British Birdfair this past weekend – an annual three-day birding extravaganza held at Rutland Water. We met quite a few people who’d travelled down from Scotland, either as exhibitors or visitors, and it didn’t take long for conversations to turn to the Scottish Birdfair.

Regular blog readers will know that for the past three years, RSPB Scotland has organised a smaller Birdfair, controversially located in the grounds of Hopetoun House, the stately home of Lord Hopetoun.

The controversy centred on our concerns about the link between Hopetoun and the Leadhills [Hopetoun] Estate in South Lanarkshire. We’ve blogged extensively about those concerns: see here, here, here, here, here, especially here,  and a bit more here, here and here.

In a nutshell, Lord Hopetoun claimed that ‘Hopetoun Estate has no role whatsoever in the management of Leadhills‘. We disputed that, based on our own research (see links above). RSPB Scotland chose to ignore the findings of our research, apparently because they had signed up to a three-year contract, and they continued to hold their event at Hopetoun House. This led to a number of people boycotting the event, notably wildlife artist and raptor research expert Keith Brockie, who stated on this blog that he’d cancelled his exhibitor’s stand at the Scottish Birdfair – well done Keith! We also understand that Mark Avery also turned down an invitation to speak at last year’s Scottish Birdfair, a decision we believe was at least partially based on the Hopetoun/Leadhills connection. If that’s accurate, then well done Mark! The Scottish Raptor Study Group was also reported to have boycotted the event due to its location – if that’s accurate, well done them!

Well the good news, based on various sources, is that RSPB Scotland has finally given Hopetoun House the elbow and the 2015 Scottish Birdfair will be held at a different venue. That really is good news.

The question now is, where is the new venue? Apparently nothing has yet been finalised although the name of one particular site kept cropping up during last weekend’s discussions. Hmmm. We’ll have to wait for the official announcement though…..

20
May
14

A feeble, question-dodging response from the Environment Minister

Peregrine poisoned Leadhills Feb 2014In early April we blogged about the poisoned peregrine that had been found close to the boundary of Leadhills Estate in South Lanarkshire (see here). We encouraged blog readers to email the Environment Minister with a series of questions about this specific incident and the broader topic of long-term raptor persecution in this particular area. We know from our site stats that over 100 of you emailed the Minister (well done and thank you) and perhaps this volume of email traffic was the reason for his delayed response.

Anyway, last week his formal response was eventually mailed out and we’ve been sent a few copies by several readers. As usual, it’s a fairly generic response and here is a general overview of what he had to say (or to be more precise, what his civil servant had to say on his behalf) -:

“Thank you for your letters to the Minister for Environment and Climate Change, Paul Wheelhouse. I have been asked to respond.

The Minister has been appalled at the recent incidents of raptor persecution including the mass poisoning in Ross-shire which has claimed the lives of 16 red kites and 6 buzzards. Clearly there have been other incidents across Scotland involving peregrine falcons and most recently a juvenile sea eagle, the first born to the reintroduced east coast birds, has gone missing in an area where raptors have been lost before. The mass poisoning is a terrible loss for the Black Isle and has rightly been condemned by the local community as well as the wider public. The Minister was heartened however, by the contributions made by members of the public, as well as landowners and farmers, to the reward fund set up by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) for information which leads to a successful conviction.

These incidents threaten to undermine Scotland’s reputation as a country that cares for its wildlife and natural environment but reinforce the need for the new measures the Minister announced in July 2013.

In addition to these measures, the Scottish Government launched a Consultation to gather views on extending the investigative powers for inspectors in the Scottish SPCA in relation to certain wildlife offences. The Consultation will run from 31 March until 1 September 2014 and of course all views will be taken into account before a decision is made.

The possession of certain poisons is an offence in Scotland and in order to help rid our countryside of these dangerous chemicals, we shall be looking at building on existing mechanisms to remove them from Scotland’s environment.

You raised a number of specific points about the peregrine falcon poisoning incident in Lanarkshire and I will deal with each in turn below.

1. Why did Police Scotland tell a member of the public this was not a police matter? Will you launch an inquiry and publish the findings?

Police Scotland call handlers must consider the information they are given at the time of the call and not all reported incidents may be crimes. It would be inappropriate for the Minister to comment on Police operational matters.

2. Will you launch an inquiry into PC Everitt’s alleged response to this incident and publish the findings?

The Minister will not be making any statement based on speculative comments posted on social media sites about a serving Police officer. This would not be appropriate.

3. Will you launch an inquiry into why illegal raptor persecution continues to flourish in the Leadhills area, and publish the findings?

The area where the poisoned peregrine falcon was discovered was disclosed by Police Scotland as ‘the Abington area of South Lanarkshire’. The Minister will not be drawn into any speculation about a live police investigation which might prejudice the outcome of the investigation.

4. Will SNH use the new enabling clause in the General Licences to withdraw their use in the Leadhills area with immediate effect?

SNH will consider restricting the use of General Licences where they believe it is appropriate to do so, and on a case by case basis.

5. Over what period of time are you going to measure the success of the new measures introduced in July 2013?  It seems the threat of these new measures has not managed to stem the mass destruction of Scotland’s Natural Heritage.

The Minister has decided it would be inappropriate to impose exact time scales on the effect of the new measures as each measure is unique and will require its own consideration. However, it is hoped to report on the findings of the penalties review before the end of 2014.

Once SNH have had the opportunity to implement any General Licence restrictions the Minister will seek an update on how these have worked in practice. The final measure about Police Scotland use of technology can only be considered on a case by case basis and these are decisions made in the course of operational policing. It would be inappropriate for the Minister to seek to influence operational decisions of police colleagues in respect of an investigation.

Whilst current legislation and these new measures should be given due time to take effect, the Minister is on record confirming that he will take further action if it appears that current measures are insufficient. The Scottish Government takes this issue seriously and I hope that this response illustrates the extensive work that is taking place.

Yours sincerely,

Karen Hunter

Wildlife Crime Policy Officer”.

There’s nothing in his response that comes as a surprise. It’s full of the same old rhetoric that we get every time we ask for more robust action to be taken. To be fair to him, we can understand his view that the measures he brought in last July need time to take effect. The problem with that though, is that here we are, 10 months later, still waiting for many of those measures to actually be enacted and meanwhile the filthy criminals continue with their systematic persecution, knowing full well they’re still untouchable. His refusal to set a review date to assess whether his new measures have been effective is very disappointing. We’ll probably be here in the same place two years down the line, still waiting, and still counting the cost (in terms of raptor deaths) of this constant procrastination.

We were particularly disappointed with his answer to question 3. Perhaps he’s not familiar with the geography of South Lanarkshire, and especially the proximity of Abington village to the Leadhills Estate boundary. Here’s a map:

Leadhills Abington map

The big brown smudge in the middle (or, to borrow a phrase from George Monbiot’s latest excellent article, that “bare black misery“) is Leadhills grouse moor. The site where the peregrine was found poisoned with Carbofuran is closer to that grouse moor than it is to Abington village. That’s not to say that we’re accusing anyone from Leadhills Estate of being responsible for poisoning the peregrine, it’s just a clarification that the site falls within what we would describe as the ‘Leadhills area’ – an area with a 40+ year history of illegal killing, including plenty of Carbofuran abuse in recent decades. Perhaps Police Scotland chose to describe the site as being in the ‘Abington area’ to deflect attention from this being yet another persecution incident in what is one of  Scotland’s blackest areas for long-term raptor killing. It’ll make the crime stats look better is this one can’t be attributed to the Leadhills area.

We’ll look forward to hearing the results of their ‘live police investigation’….yeah, right.

28
Apr
14

More parliamentary questions asked about raptor persecution in Scotland

Claire Baker MSP 2Last week we blogged about MSP Liam McArthur’s parliamentary questions about raptor persecution in Scotland, posed after our articles on the alleged police response to the poisoned peregrine found at Leadhills (see here).

It seems he’s not the only MSP paying attention to this blog.

Claire Baker MSP (Scottish Labour’s Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs & the Environment, and MSP for Mid Scotland & Fife) has also been asking some pointed parliamentary questions:

Question S4W-20654: Claire Baker, Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 08/04/2014.

To ask the Scottish Government what steps it plans to take in response to the illegal killing of birds of prey in addition to its consultation on the powers of the Scottish SPCA.

Current Status: Expected Answer date 07/05/2014

Question S4W-20655: Claire Baker, Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 08/04/2014.

To ask the Scottish Government, in light of the Minister for Environment and Climate Change’s comment in his letter to the chief executive of Scottish Land & Estates dated 26 February 2014 [which we revealed in an FOI here] that “despite all our efforts, there remains an element of sporting managers and owners who continue to flout the law and defy public opinion”, whether it will conduct a review of the licensing and other arrangements for regulating game bird shooting in other countries, with a view to implementing stronger management and regulation.

Current Status: Expected Answer date 07/05/2014

Question S4W-20656: Claire Baker, Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 08/04/2014.

To ask the Scottish Government what recent discussions the (a) Cabinet Secretary for Justice and (b) Minister for Environment and Climate Change has had with the Chief Constable regarding resources and training for wildlife crime officers.

Current Status: Expected Answer date 07/05/2014

Not only has she been asking parliamentary questions, she’s also been writing to the Environment Minister specifically about raptor persecution (see here), and last week she used her opening address at the SEPA and SRUC conference on land use and sustainable development to highlight the Ross-shire Massacre and state that “there can be no more excuses from landowners and the Government” (see here).

The Environment Minister is coming under increasing attack for what many see as an abject failure to deal with raptor persecution, particularly that associated with game-shooting estates. We suggested on Twitter this weekend that the Scottish Government is too obsessed with the Independence Referendum to care/notice the on-going rise in raptor crime. Paul Wheelhouse has hit back this morning with a series of tweets, including:

“It [raptor persecution] stains our reputation and I promise you this is not being ignored by me or Scottish Government”

and

“We’re being robust and if new measures don’t improve, will go further”

and

“Hope to have a parliamentary debate in near future”.

UPDATE 16th MAY 2014: Answers to Claire Baker’s parliamentary questions here.

23
Apr
14

Parliamentary questions asked about poisoned peregrine at Leadhills

Peregrine poisoned Leadhills Feb 2014Three weeks ago we blogged about the discovery of a poisoned peregrine in the Leadhills area of South Lanarkshire, and the alleged response of Police Scotland & NWCU, who both seemed reluctant to handle the case (see here, here and here).

The authorities have refused to discuss the incident, claiming it would be inappropriate to comment on an on-going investigation. We argue that answering questions about how an initial telephone call was handled would have no impact whatsoever on any ‘investigation’ (and we don’t even believe there is an investigation, as the person who reported the dead bird has apparently been told by Police Scotland that a witness statement is not required!!!).

This stone-walling response is pretty common and we’re used to it by now. Many of us have written to the Environment Minister to demand an explanation about why the police and the NWCU allegedly ignored this reported crime but so far we’ve heard absolutely nothing in return. This silence doesn’t fill us with confidence that raptor persecution is being taken seriously.

One MSP isn’t satisfied with this official wall of silence.

Liam McArthur MSPLiam McArthur MSP, a Scottish Liberal Democrat representing the Orkney Islands (a very long way from Leadhills!!) has submitted a series of parliamentary questions about this Leadhills case, and more generally about the effectiveness of current enforcement measures to deal with raptor persecution. Good on him.

Question S4W-20745: Liam McArthur, Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats, Date Lodged: 15/04/2014

To ask the Scottish Government what steps Police Scotland is taking to ensure that its staff are aware of their responsibilities regarding the protection of protected species. [Current Status: Expected answer date 15/5/2014].

Question S4W-20746: Liam McArthur, Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats, Date Lodged: 15/04/2014

To ask the Scottish Government whether it will hold an inquiry into reports that Police Scotland told a member of the public that the poisoning of a peregrine falcon in the Leadhills area was not a police matter. [Current Status: Expected Answer date 15/05/2014].

Question S4W-20747: Liam McArthur, Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats, Date Lodged: 15/04/2014

To ask the Scottish Government what steps it is taking to combat illegal raptor persecution in the Leadhills area. [Current Status: Expected Answer date 15/05/2014].

Question S4W-20748: Liam McArthur, Orkney Islands, Scottish Liberal Democrats, Date Lodged: 15/04/2014

To ask the Scottish Government whether there is sufficient evidence to assess the effectiveness of the new enforcement measures to tackle raptor persecution announced by the Minister for Environment and Climate Change on 1 July 2013. [Current Status: Expected Answer date 15/05/2014].

07
Apr
14

Official statements about the Leadhills poisoned peregrine

Following on from Saturday’s blog post about the poisoned peregrine that was found in the Leadhills area and the appalling response from the police (see here), we expected to read some official statements today from the likes of Environment Minister Paul Wheelhouse, PAW Scotland, Police Scotland, National Wildlife Crime Unit, Scottish Land & Estates, the Scottish Gamekeepers’ Association etc etc.

Here’s what we found:

tumbleweed2

Why did we expect a response? Well, partly because of all the rhetoric we’ve been fed over the past few years about how stamping out wildlife crime is a priority for Police Scotland, for the Government, for SLE, for the SGA etc etc, and partly because this particular incident is number 45 on a long list of other raptor persecution incidents reported from the Leadhills area since 2003 (and we know there are many more incidents that went unrecorded because we’ve reported some of them ourselves!).

We know that over 50 of you have emailed the Minister (thank you) to demand some specific action, including an inquiry into PC Everitt’s alleged refusal to accept this incident was probably a wildlife crime, and to insist that SNH now use their new powers to restrict the use of General Licences in the Leadhills area.

The Minister has 20 working days in which to respond. For those of us who wrote to him over the weekend, that means he has to respond by 2nd May 2014. However, we know from previous incidents that the Minister usually waits until the very last day of that 20-working day period before he actually does respond. If we were cynics we would think that these delayed responses were designed to ‘wait out’ the public’s anger which will probably have subsided by the time the 20 working day deadline has expired.

We also know from past experience that the Minister will likely tell us that he can’t comment about Police Scotland procedures (e.g. “it’s a police matter and it would be inappropriate for me to comment”) and that he can’t comment about the potential withdrawal of General Licences (e.g. “it’s an SNH matter and it would be inappropriate for me to respond”).

He might surprise us but none of us are expecting him to. So, in anticipation of a feeble, question-dodging response, we thought we’d bypass him and go directly to those agencies ourselves.

If any of you are also interested in doing this, here are some useful contact details:

To find out why Police Scotland and the NWCU failed to act when this crime was reported to them, there are three key players to contact –

The Police Scotland Wildlife Crime Portfolio is led strategically by Assistant Chief Constable Malcolm Graham. Email: Acc.CrimeMCPP@scotland.pnn.police.uk

Police Scotland Wildlife Crime Portfolio Lead Officer is Det. Sup. Cameron Cavin. Email: Cameron.Cavin@scotland.pnn.police.uk

Police Scotland Wildlife Crime Coordinator is Sgt. Andrew Mavin. Email: Andrew.Mavin@scotland.pnn.police.uk

We’re sure all three gentlemen would love to have the opportunity to explain what happened (or more to the point, why nothing happened) and how their failure to respond fits in with their much-publicised approach to tackling wildlife crime (see here for details).

To ask SNH whether they will be enacting the new enabling clause in the 2014 General Licences and thus restricting their use in the Leadhills area, contact the Chief Executive of SNH, Ian Jardine. Email: ian.jardine@snh.gov.uk

We’re still interested in what the Environment Minister has to say about it all, of course. For those of you who haven’t yet emailed him to demand robust action, here’s his email address: Ministerforenvironment@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

They might all think that by keeping quiet for a few days we’ll all forget about it and move on to something else. They’d be pretty stupid to think so.




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