The Moorland Association’s plan to block publicity about the failed Peak District Bird of Prey Initiative has spectacularly backfired.
Journalists have picked up on the news that the RSPB has terminated its involvement with the project and yesterday evening the failed Initiative, and more importantly, the reasons behind its failure, featured prominently on several BBC regional news programmes including East Midlands Today and Look North.
The videos for both programmes are available on BBC iPlayer but only until 7pm this evening.
BBC East Midlands Today (here) – starts at 4.35
BBC Look North (here) – starts 10.00
Both programmes are worth watching if you get the chance as there are similarities but also differences. For example, David Hunt from the RSPB features in both programmes (and delivers a very strong message, calling out the Moorland Association by name. Well done!) whereas Steve Bloomfield from BASC only appears in the East Midlands programme and Amanda Anderson from the Moorland Association only appears in the Look North version.
For those who missed the archived footage, here are the relevant quotes:
David Hunt (RSPB): “Instead of seeing numbers rise of peregrine and goshawk we’ve actually seen the numbers drop over the lifespan of the Initiative, and against all of that there’s been a refusal from one of the partners in the Initiative, the Moorland Association, to acknowledge that one of the leading contributing factors in this drop in numbers is illegal killing of birds of prey“.
Steve Bloomfield (BASC): “We share their [the RSPB’s] frustrations and I think this needs to be a wake up call for the shooting community that these issues are going on and causing problems. There are huge amounts of benefits to the shooting interests on these estates to other wildlife. We musn’t lose that“.
Amanda Anderson (Moorland Association): “We’re all really disappointed that they’ve [the RSPB] left this really important collaborative Initiative. We all want the same thing, and that’s a sustainable, healthy assemblage of birds of prey across the Peak District National Park. We just differ in our view of how to achieve that“.
In the Look North programme, the BBC reporter Mark Ansell closed with this:
“The Peak District National Park Authority declined to be interviewed but they have said in a recent report that the Bird of Prey Initiative has failed to meet its targets. They go on to say that there is confirmed evidence of raptor persecution, and in a statement they say they’ll be looking for an increase in birds in the breeding season before committing to working with the other organisations in the Initiative beyond 2018”.