Scottish Land & Estates appear to have some explaining to do re statement on ‘missing’ hen harriers

Last week the RSPB revealed that two more satellite-tagged hen harriers had ‘disappeared’ in suspicious circumstances on two grouse moors in the Cairngorms National Park (see here).

Scottish Land & Estates, the grouse moor owners’ lobby group, issued this statement in response. Pay close attention to the sentence underlined by RPUK:

For those who don’t know what the Heads Up for Hen Harriers Project is all about, a good place to start is by reading previous blogs see hereherehereherehereherehereherehere and here. Basically its a greenwashing exercise. The idea is that everybody pretends not to know why hen harrier nests are failing in certain areas (yes, really!) but by putting cameras on nests we might learn more about these ‘mystery issues’. The focus then becomes on natural predation events caught on camera and everybody can point to that as the main cause for hen harrier population decline instead of having to address the illegal persecution that continues far from any official nest camera scheme.

Scottish Land and Estates have been challenged before about publishing what looked to be inaccurate assertions about some of the estates involved in this sham (e.g. see here) but the organisation’s complete lack of transparency, coupled with SNH’s refusal to tell us which estates are involved in this project funded with taxpayers’ money, meant that SLE’s claims were allowed to stand.

Now it seems another of SLE’s claims about this project has been challenged. Have a look at this very interesting twitter exchange that was posted yesterday:

We’ll be following this with interest….

Watch this space.

13 thoughts on “Scottish Land & Estates appear to have some explaining to do re statement on ‘missing’ hen harriers”

  1. They (SLE) are part of the grouse cabal and nothing they say should be taken at face value and that goes for all the pro grouse shooting groups throughout the UK be that SLE, MA, NGO, BASC, GWCT, SGA, Countryside Areliars, Moorland Groups or C4PMC. They have all been caught out twisting the truth and sometimes telling complete untruths .

  2. Heads up for harriers……another talking shop going nowhere.

    It apparently has willing partners…..but SLE are there in name only. They represent their members but have never been able to persuade them to participate en masse and those that do participate either have an existing relationship with SRG or insist on a cloud of secrecy.

    The shame of having to allow harriers to breed on their ground is too much for most.

    BASC, GWCT, SLE, SGA, NGO, MA CA…..all claim to represent their members, but none of them seem to have control or influence over the behaviour of their members. So everything they commit too is hot air. They are a smoke screen made up of overlapping members which gives a false impression of depth to the dwindling killing for fun community.

    Its had its day.

    1. ‘but none of them seem to have control or influence over the behaviour of their members.’
      I doubt they even want to. I would even go further than that but again it wouldn’t be printable.
      The clue is in why they want the data and you can be sure it is live data they want.

  3. ‘Our members are outrightly opposed to any form of wildlife crime and there is an urgent need for greater transparency and collaboration over satellite tag data which could help out what happens to birds that disappear.’

    I have to hand it to them they are getting more cunning. The usual ‘but’ has been replaced with an ‘and.’ but it is the same trick, first comes the lip-service then comes the real demand and we all know what they really mean. They want the live data and we don’t need to wonder why.
    My translation of what comes after the ‘and’ would not be printable.

  4. The arrogance is astounding. They demand that police hand over evidence to them midway through an investigation, before any charges were brought. Can you imagine that in any other criminal scenario? Swap SLE for Billy Burglar, or a drug dealer, or the Driver who knocks down a cyclist and see how it looks. “Please hand over everything you have on me officer……”

    Evidence is only disclosed once charges are brought and legal proceedings have commenced, not during enquiries. Suspects may sometimes be challenged with evidence during a formal police interview but Billy Burglar can’t just demand to see what the cops come round and reveal what they have on him just cos he’s sweating a little bit on a recent “job.” SLE want access to the Satellite Tag data in the same way a car thief might like to have live information on where all the traffic units are patrolling before he sets off to steal a your Range Rover. One can only draw the conclusion that these people are so used to having privileged access, getting their own way and have ordinary folk doing their bidding in their everyday lives that they expect wider society to bow down and do the same, including the Old Bill. They think they own us all. Their statement speaks volumes, although the message being received is very different from the one they tried to send.

  5. Just out of interest – when the cameras are showing that the nests are being predated by foxes etc, is that not a pretty significant indicator of that being a problem – in a similar way to the nest of Harriers that was raided by a fox recently, caught on camera – on RSPB managed ground?

    1. It depends how many nests are predated by foxes. Though I’m sure I remember grouse shooting organisations recently saying how safe harriers are from ground predators (foxes) on grouse shooting estates.

      It is also what one might call a hugely skewed sample – estates that know there are cameras on a harrier nest are hardly likely to do anything to the nest.

      And finally, have a check of the reserve finder on the RSPB website. Spoiler alert – you’ll struggle to find an RSPB reserve in Bowland…. You’re welcome!

    2. Aside from your bullshit about the RSPB, is it “not a pretty significant indicator of that being a problem” when a Blackbird’s videod pulling a worm from a lawn, or a Kingfisher taking a Minnow?
      Anyone who’s not a complete f**kwit understands that natural predation of Hen Harrier nests only increases in importance when the English population has been reduced (by criminal scum that infest our uplands) to a level below which it can be easily absorbed.

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