Preda­tor con­trol vi­tal pro­tec­tion for birds

Sporting Gun - - Snapshots -

En­dan­gered up­land bird num­bers on grouse moors in the north of Eng­land would nose­dive if not for the work of game­keep­ers un­der­tak­ing preda­tor con­trol, ac­cord­ing to a new study.

A re­port pub­lished by New­cas­tle and Durham uni­ver­si­ties sug­gested that with­out keep­ers to pre­vent at­tacks from foxes and other preda­tors, the num­ber of curlew chicks hatch­ing in these ar­eas could fall by around 87 per cent. The num­ber of golden plover chicks hatch­ing, mean­while, could drop by as much as 95 per cent with a pre­dicted over­all pop­u­la­tion de­cline of 79 per cent.

“We were sur­prised by just how de­pen­dent these birds are on the preda­tor con­trol pro­vided by keep­ers. If that was with­drawn I would ex­pect big falls in these species would oc­cur within a few years,” said Pro­fes­sor Mark Whit­ting­ham of New­cas­tle Univer­sity.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.