The publication of the hen harrier satellite tag paper on Tuesday (here) that provided compelling evidence to highlight, yet again, the link between grouse moors and the illegal killing of hen harriers, has resulted in a flurry of responses from various individuals and organisations.
We’ll be looking at these responses in turn.
This time we’re examining the response of the Northern England Raptor Forum (NERF).
NERF has published a statement on its blog – see here.
It’s a powerful commentary on what has amounted to 15 years of failed partnership working in attempts to get the grouse shooting industry to oust its hen harrier-killing criminals.
The sense of frustration at its failure is palpable.
The NERF statement is a must-read for all those who keep telling us we need to engage with conflict resolution approaches and if only we could all sit down around the same table and sip tea and eat Custard Creams everything will be fine. Read the statement and you’ll understand why it won’t.
The time for more talking with those who represent and shield the criminals has just about run out (for some it already has) but NERF is prepared for one more throw of the dice and is “investing a temendous amount of goodwill” in the apparently rejuvenated RPPDG under the leadership of Supt Nick Lyall.
Hats off to the NERF membership – these are ordinary men and women who voluntarily dedicate huge amounts of time and expertise to study, monitor and try to safeguard birds of prey across the north of England, despite the appalling criminality within the game shooting industry that is allowed to continue year after year after year with devastating impacts on individual and on populations of some raptors. Many would have thrown in the towel a long time ago to avoid the aggravation – thank god the NERF members didn’t.