Further to the First Minister’s statement in the Scottish Parliament yesterday (see here) in response to Alison Johnstone’s question about when will the Scottish Government finally take action against those who continue to kill birds of prey on grouse moors, the Environment Cabinet Secretary Roseanna Cunningham has this afternoon issued a statement, as follows:
Let’s be blunt about this, because the time for niceties has long since passed.
This latest holding statement, because that’s what it is, is utter bollocks.
It offers absolutely nothing new and is no different to anything the Scottish Government has published on this very serious issue over the last 20 years. Here’s an example of a similar statement, by the same Minister, ten years ago. And here are many more examples of Scottish Ministers claiming that ‘raptor persecution won’t be tolerated’.
This is, pure and simple, persistent inaction in the face of persistent evidence.
That persistent evidence has been presented for over 20 years, stretching back to the early 1990s, well before the Government decided to commission yet another review in 2017. That latest review, the Werritty Review, was handed to the Scottish Government nine months ago (the 18th November 2019 to be precise). And yet STILL the Scottish Government has failed to publish its response.
The only thing that’s changed in the last 20 years is that the body count has increased. Here’s the latest, a white-tailed eagle that was found dead on a grouse moor inside the Cairngorms National Park, poisoned to death by a banned toxin (see here).
Actually, it’s not the only thing that’s changed. Public awareness of these crimes has grown, as has public anger, as can be seen by the volume of correspondence the Cabinet Secretary refers to at the beginning of her statement. So much correspondence in fact that the Government can’t cope in having to reply individually and has had to resort to a generic statement instead.
The title of the Cabinet Secretary’s latest missive is ‘ACTION ON RAPTOR PERSECUTION & WILDLIFE CRIME’. And action is indeed what we should continue to demand.
You can do this very easily. If you’re sick to the back teeth of illegal raptor persecution on driven grouse moors, and the Government’s persistent inaction, please consider participating in this quick and easy e-action to send a letter to your local Parliamentary representative (MSP/MP/MS) demanding change. Launched on Saturday by Wild Justice, RSPB and Hen Harrier Action, over 37,000 people have signed up so far.
This means that over 37,000 pre-written letters complaining about illegal raptor persecution and the environmental damage caused by intensive grouse moor management, are winging their way to politicians of all parties across the country. If you want your local politician to receive one, Please join in HERE