“LAG” warns of lead ammo effect
Unsanctioned by Government, an unofficial group is attempting to sensationalise the effects of lead ammunition on birds and people
an unofficial body calling itself the lead ammunition group (lag) has published a report that sensationalises the number of birds affected by lead ammunition and its effect on the human population.
the authentic lag was created by defra and delivered a study in 2016, with conclusions that were considered and then rejected by the government. the then defra secretary stated that this rejection “marked the end of the group”.
the unrecognised lag does not report to defra nor fulfil the mission of the original lag. It is a lobby group campaigning against lead ammunition and spreading conclusions that go beyond current science. the distortions are contained in a paper called the lead ammunition report.
commenting on the coverage received by the paper, the countryside alliance’s shooting campaigns manager Jack knott said: “the Uk already has strict legislation which prohibits the use of lead shot for the shooting of wildfowl and over wetlands, and remains well ahead of many other european countries in restricting the use of lead ammunition. this is significant because most species of wildfowl are migratory and visit a number of countries during migration to and from the Uk.
“the paper posits 400,000 wildfowl suffer lead poisoning every year — this has been extrapolated from countries that have yet to restrict lead shot over wetlands and from data collected before restrictions were put in place in the Uk. the paper suggests these birds are worth £16million, generated from the expected cost of rearing the 400,000 wildfowl.
“With regards to theorised population-level impacts on red kites and buzzards, both are experiencing unprecedented population booms and a huge amount of shooting money is being put into conserving the grey partridge.
“the conservation of the pochard is of concern to us all, but we should note that it is a classic migratory species which spends much of its life in countries with no restrictions on lead shot.
“the alliance thinks it is important to note that at least 55million birds are killed annually in the Uk by cats, yet the rspb claims this has no population-level impact. even if the 400,000 figure is taken at face value, these numbers would suggest that the effects of lead ammunition are irrelevant by comparison to the 55million birds killed by cats.”
“Effects of lead are irrelevant, given numbers killed by cats”
use of lead shot is already banned for shooting over wetlands in the uk