It's incredible to think that in this day and age there is a legally-protected bird in England which is on the brink of extinction. There are only 3 breeding pairs of the beautiful hen harrier left. This is partly due to illegal persecution on driven grouse moors.
It is illegal to kill hen harrier or any other bird of prey in the UK.
Earlier this year in Scotland I spent time watching these wonderful raptors and their chicks. Something which you will be lucky to see in England despite there being enough habitat for 300 pairs.
— Emily Z K Joáchim (@emilyjoachim) August 7, 2014
— RS (@CrypticMirror) August 7, 2014
The Raptors Alive website was set up by TV wildlife presenter Chris Packham, Mark Avery Birders Against Wildlife Crime, Ethical Consumer and the Sound Approach. #HenHarrierDay on Sunday 10 August 2014 is also being supported by Lush, the skincare and bodycare shop, who I greatly admire for their commitment to environmental and ethical policies.
How can you help save the hen harrier
- Join the Hen Harrier Day Thunderclap – sign in with Facebook, Twitter or Tumblr so that we can join together in sharing the same message at the same time automatically.
- Get a hen harrier twibbon (like mine) to go on your Twitter profile photo. It takes just seconds.
- Create a t-shirt using Chris Packham's fantastic design (free to download)
- Sign the petition: The hen harrier, a national icon, was once common across the moorlands of northern England. Now, in our homeland it is on the brink of extinction as a breeding bird due to the illegal persecution it suffers on driven grouse moors. They are in desperate need of our help; therefore we would like to introduce you to the Hen Harrier Royal Family… The six most important and special birds in England.
Intensive management of upland areas for the ‘sport’ of grouse shooting has led to the near-extinction of the protected Hen Harrier in England, as well as increased risk of flooding, discolouration of drinking water, degradation of peatbogs and impacts on other wildlife.
Grouse shooting interests have persecuted the Hen Harrier to such an extent that, despite full legal protection for the last 60 years, it is almost extinct as a breeding species in England (2 pairs nested in 2013) despite there being habitat available for 300+ pairs. The investigation of wildlife crimes against such protected species is time-consuming, difficult to prosecute, and ties up valuable police resources.
Grouse shooters have failed to put their own house in order, despite decades of discussion, and government has proved incapable of influencing this powerful lobby group.
The time has now come for the public to call ‘Enough!’ and require the next government to ban driven grouse shooting in England.
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