Arjun Amar will be a familiar name to anyone who’s taken more than a passing interest in the illegal persecution of birds of prey in the UK.
Arj has published a number of papers linking the illegal persecution of raptors to driven grouse shooting, including the detrimental effects this can have at a population scale, particularly on red kites, peregrines and hen harriers.
Most recently he was a co-author on the important Murgatroyd et al paper (2019) which showed that at least 72% of hen harriers satellite-tagged by Natural England were presumed to have been illegally killed on or close to driven grouse moors (see here).
Arj was recently interviewed by The Biome Project for a podcast about UK raptor persecution and its link to driven grouse shooting.
As you’d expect from someone with such credentials, it’s well worth a listen.
As you might also expect, Arj’s research has drawn him to the attention of some members of the game-shooting industry who obviously don’t like what he’s doing and have tried, over a number of years, to undermine his credibility and scientific integrity with unfounded, disgraceful abuse and slurs.
Here was Arj’s response to the trolls:
As many of you will know, being targeted and harassed by some within the game-shooting industry is now commonplace (e.g. see here, here, here, here, here, here, here). Obviously, these abusive, personal attacks are designed to intimidate and silence not only those already speaking out against the criminal driven grouse shooting industry, but also anybody else who might be thinking of joining in.
Let’s turn that on its head and instead of silencing these voices let’s amplify them. If you’re on Twitter, please follow Arj and share his work: @arjundevamar
If you want to find out more about raptor persecution in the UK and what action is being taken to stand up to it, watch Hen Harrier Day this Saturday (7th August) from 10am, organised by Wild Justice & hosted by Chris Packham and Megan McCubbin. Sign up here for details.