Help stop wildlife criminals
THE north west has a bad reputation for wildlife crime – it is something The Wildlife Trust and its members have been trying to shake off for more than 50 years.
I am sure we are supported by the majority of Mancs, Lancs and Scousers, but there are still some people intent on illegally doing damage to the wonderful creatures that surround us.
Over the past month we have had reports of hare coursing on Little Woolden Moss in Cadishead.
Then a group of men were seen carrying guns on the same nature reserve.
Let’s lay our cards on the table here – unlicensed shooting is not allowed on our nature reserves. Hare coursing and hunting are also banned on Wildlife Trust properties.
In my opinion the people doing this are indulging in activities which are cruel and selfish.
If you want to hunt hares on our mosses then you are depriving future generations of the delights of seeing these wonderful animals.
In April I watched as hares boxed and chased each other for more than half an hour, my immediate emotions were delight and wonder, not ‘I must shoot these creatures or set my dog on them’.
The people who illegally go out hare coursing are not likely to be your average, friendly types and if you see them you should not approach or reproach them.
Similarly, it is unwise to warn off people carrying shotguns if they appear to be in places they shouldn’t be.
They know they shouldn’t be there and wouldn’t appreciate your involvement.
However we do want you to report these activities to the police.
If you see a small group of people – even two – with lurchers heading on to one of our nature reserves please inform the police on 101. If you see people with guns on public or Wildlife Trust property dial 999.
We understand that in the present climate, wildlife crime is not high on the police agenda and resources are stretched to the limit, but this type of crime still needs reporting and officers will investigate serious cases like this.
Just to stress, our message is report these activities but, please, do not approach the people involved.
Your actions could eventually help us to put an end to illegal activities like hare coursing on nature reserves that are maintained to protect wildlife.
Most of us want to watch brown hares in the wild, most of us appreciate the creatures that make the north west such a beautiful place.
To support the work of the Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside, text WILD09 with the amount you want to donate to 70070.
Hare coursing on Wildlife Trust properties is illegal