News just in Travesty England bans pigeon and crow shooting

Discussion in 'News & Announcements' started by 8 x 60, Apr 23, 2019.

  1. 8 x 60

    8 x 60 AH Veteran

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  2. Hank2211

    Hank2211 AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Little by little . . .
     

  3. Wheels

    Wheels AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    "Feed the birds. Tuppence a bag" at St. Paul's, comes to mind for some strange reason. It probably has something to do with my age.

    Over the years I have been in Trafalgar Square a number of times. At one point there had to be thousands of pigeons in the Square. Around ten years ago I walked into the square and was surprised by the paucity of pigeons. In front of Canada House was a falconry van. I visited with a hawker for a few minutes. He was being paid reasonably well to keep the pigeons out of the square. The cost of progress......

    At least London is doing a better job of keeping excrement off their streets than San Francisco!
     

  4. Alistair

    Alistair AH Veteran

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    As a point of order, the UK, or Natural England, is not banning anything. They have however suspended the 'General Licenses for certain species of bird, including pigeons temporarily. As such, if you need to control these specis for the time being, you'd need to apply for a specific license to do so. It's free, but a pain in the arse.

    I expect in due time (theoretically by the 29th of this month) the General License will be restored, perhaps with a few modifications under their revamp of the licensing laws, but for the time being, it's less than ideal. Strictly speaking this is only for England as well, not Scotland and Wales, as they hve their own equivalent agencies, although I don't think I'd want to bank on that one.

    For those interested, here is the Government press release on this: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/...ntrol-major-changes-to-licensing-requirements

    Yes, it's silly and I don't entirely see the logic behind it, but lets not get too carried away on the 'ban' thing.

    Al.
     
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  5. WAB

    WAB AH Elite

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    I’m confused, this talks about nuisance bird control. Does this apply to sport hunting of wood pigeon?
     

  6. Scrumbag

    Scrumbag AH Fanatic

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    Wood pigeons are hunted under the General License that is being discussed
     

  7. 8 x 60

    8 x 60 AH Veteran

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    It is a ban unless my definition of a ban is incorrect. Also the chances of obtaining a specific licence will be lengthy drawn out and probably unsuccessful.

    I am a member of BASC and am stunned at their not seeing this one coming.

    As to the General Licences being restored I live in hope but I for one will not be holding my breath.

    Aye
     
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  8. spike.t

    spike.t AH ENABLER SPONSOR Since 2013 AH Ambassador

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  9. Alistair

    Alistair AH Veteran

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    I think your definintion may be. You can still do it, you just have to jump through an additional hoop that may, admittedly, be difficult to clear in time to be doing it this weekend. It's no more 'banned' than driving or firearm ownership.

    The chances of getting an individual license are likely to be pretty high as long as you can demonstrate damage / danger to public health and that other methods have been explored, although I very much doubt that Natural England (NE) have the resource or man power to cope with the heightened demand, so I agree that the process is unlikely to be rapid.

    Based on the above I suspect that the general license will have to come back out of necessity, unless NE can find a lot of additional funding from somewhere, as ultimately there is a significant issue with crop damage / public health risk for these species and they will need to be controlled. As an example I work for a UK brewery and we are obliged under quality standards and various bits of legislation to control pests, including pigeons. The current default is that any pigeon that gets into a production area gets eliminated asap and I doubt that's going to change just because NE are being difficult. Food Quality standards vs. NE, I know who I'd bank on...

    BASC are crap and have been crap as long as I can remember, I expect they 'welcome this change' as per all the recent stuff that's screwed people over. Remember the medical FAC conditions debacle?
     

  10. 8 x 60

    8 x 60 AH Veteran

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    Yep The falconer was doing a great job mostly by moving the problem somewhere else.
     
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  11. Foxi

    Foxi AH Elite

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    ......since today
    I thought that was a news flash on april 1st.
    Does anyone know anything about why?
    Crows and pigeons are considered an animal pest there and now they enjoy full protection.
    The world is getting crazier and crazier.
    Whereby, not madder, it becomes less and less, because our rights are more and more cut off.
    Foxi
     

  12. 8 x 60

    8 x 60 AH Veteran

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    Interesting and detailed response from Richard Benyon MP:

    • This issue came about as the result of a legal challenge and as such there is no flexibility other than to suspend the GL. It (the GL) stems from the days of MAFF when there was apparently a requirement to do a regular assessment of the need for a GL. Defra handed the duty over to NE six years ago and it appears that some crucial paperwork did not find its way there, and it has created a loop hole that has been exploited by anti-shooting campaigners.
    • NE intend to continue with the GL as soon as possible but crucially most species WILL be able to be legally controlled within a few days.
    • On Thursday there will be a simple form to fill in available on the NE website from the moment the GL falls, to apply for and quickly receive legal authority to control a number of the 16 species covered by the GL. NE will prioritise pigeons (damage to crops) and next will be corvids. There will be three categories under which people can apply. These will be a) damage to livestock (including game), b) public health and safety and, c) conservation.
    • This is a temporary fix. A new GL will be issued in time but will require the usual processes including consultation.
    • She said that the campaigners are very keen to expose law breaking so urged all parties to follow the simple process they are putting in place and to remain within the law.
    We are expecting further information to come from Natural England and DEFRA over the next few days and as soon as we have something, I will pass it on to you.

    With best wishes

    Yours sincerely

    Michele De Angeli
    PA to The Rt Hon Richard Benyon MP
     

  13. Shootist43

    Shootist43 AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    It is too bad that no one in the administration saw this coming and moved to circumvent it. Just goes to prove that you cannot give the "antis" an inch, or they will take a mile.
     

  14. 8 x 60

    8 x 60 AH Veteran

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    True on both counts . As we know only too well the "establishment" don't really do anything pro-active and just respond - usually too late when they actually have to do something that has arisen as a direct result of them being asleep on watch. Hey-Ho
     
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  15. 8 x 60

    8 x 60 AH Veteran

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    Copy of an email I have sent to the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC). It would be perhaps good if other members of BASC did something similar.

    Dear Sirs

    I am sure you are aware that there has been a lot of negative talk about the BASC following Natural England’s sudden change to the General Licence and the BASC’s actions, or lack of both before and subsequently.

    I have to say I feel a lot of it would seem to be justified given the lack of comment from BASC and I am sure you will have massive fall off in membership as a result. Time will tell.

    One thing that would help would be if the BASC were to challenge or at least get clear clear clarification from Natural England on the wording that is being used in the new licensing. For example.

    “to prevent serious damage”

    So how is “serious” defined in this context? It is either “damage” or “not damage”. What is the scale of “damage“ we are working with here? I have no idea.. Also If I were to shoot a pigeon “here" to prevent damage “over there” would that be lawful under the vague wording that has been given?

    (Apply the same questioning process to all of the shabby wording in the Licensing please)

    I suspect that the doublespeak used by Natural England is deliberate.

    As a foremost Conservation Organisation I would expect BASC to be at the front of the debate and to be asking these questions. You may also find if you did you would not only maintain your membership but also actually increase it.

    Please get back to me with your advice on this i.e. clarify what is actually meant by “serious” under the terms of the General License and the what constitutes “damage” under the terms of the licensing to ensure I am not needing to invoke my BASC legal cover due to lack of asked for guidance.

    If however you require further clarification as to my questions please revert

    I remain, at present, a long-standing member of your organisation

    Yours faithfully
     
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  16. Shootist43

    Shootist43 AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Do you expect a reply any time soon? Have you tried calling anyone at Natural England? Is that organization something like the Department of Natural Resources in most States on this side of the pond. They have control over all fish and game matters. Here they have open meetings with interested sportsmen and organizations to discuss current and future actions and positions on wildlife matters.
     

  17. 8 x 60

    8 x 60 AH Veteran

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    Reply received.. Below
    Thank you for your email.


    I hope one of my colleagues has contacted you regarding the content of your original email. The criticism levied against BASC is completely invalid, after all NE made the decision and gave short notice, none of which was BASC’s fault. The legal challenge did not call for the cessation of the current licences, but did ask that the current licences be reviewed so more robust licences would be issued in 2020 and BASC had already made it clear to NE that were prepared to work with NE on this as previously reported.
     

  18. JKT

    JKT AH Senior Member

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    What is the latest on this?
     

  19. larry4831

    larry4831 AH Fanatic

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    Give it a little time..... Those pigeons will be pooping all over everything.
     

  20. Alistair

    Alistair AH Veteran

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    So, a summary of the current situation can be found here: https://www.cla.org.uk/general-lice...-changes-licensing-requirements-england-only#

    To my understanding, it's as I suggested in post #7. NE didn't have the resources to continue issuing specific licenses on an ad-hoc basis, so they, and later DEFRA, swiftly issued some new general ones which are basically the same as the old General Licenses, with some changes to the verbiage to address the legal challenges raised. The only change at present is that black back and herring gulls, which were on the old General license, are not yet on the new set, although apparently one is in the works for these species.

    These are currently a 'stop gap' measure pending a public consultation, but are in force for the time being.

    The 'animal welfare' (and I use the term loosely) group who issued the original legal challenge are also not happy with the new ones and are seeking legal advice to mount a further challenge to these in the not too distant. Hopefully the situation will be handled better by DEFRA this time round.
     

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