Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Welsh Government / Labour Want To Kill Badgers (Again)

It's sad to see badgers being targeted again. This is following on from Wildlife Trusts and Forestry Commissions persecuting wildlife, livestock farmers doing the same, and an upturn in prejudice and discrimination from speciesists. Well, this is the latest:

On 28th March the Chief Veterinary Officer for Wales, Christianne Glossop, set out her plans for badger culling in Wales at a Bovine TB Symposium in London. Here is the BBC report of an interview she gave them and comments from a scientific expert that are critical of her plans. In the interview the Chief Veterinary Officer admits the proposed culling might actually increase TB.

Wales has had real success in reducing bovine TB over the past 8 years through increasing cattle measures and biosecurity without culling badgers. It has achieved a 47% reduction and now has the lowest number of new incidents for a decade with 95% of herds TB free. It makes no sense to jeopardise this success through the introduction of reactive culling of badgers which the science does not support and which has previously been shown to increase TB levels. Welsh Labour had committed to being science-led regarding bovine TB in their 2016 manifesto.

Saturday, 8 April 2017

Speciesism, Immigrants And Natives

We recently wrote about Wildlife Trusts And Forestry Commissions Persecuting Wildlife and Farmers Campaign To Kill More Wildlife. A week full of hypocritical people wanting to kill badgers, deer and other wildlife, yet calling themselves environmentalists. Following on from that, one of our members had an interesting chat about this with someone claiming to be an environmentalist yesterday. For the whole conversation the anti-squirrel person (ASP) kept focussing on "native" versus "non-native" species, yet they couldn't recognise their own speciesism. Just as with racism or sexism, it is the assigning of more value to one kind of being than another based on arbitrary preferences. Here are some parts of the discussion.

Anti-Squirrel Person (ASP): "Are you content with one non-native species causing the local or nation extinction of another?"

CIN: After this many generations non-native species ARE native species. Or do you think children of immigrants aren't "proper" citizens?

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Farmers Campaign To Kill More Wildlife

From the Cambrian News: Calls for culling of red deer

"FARMERS in the Pontsian area near Llandysul are calling on environmental chiefs to cull a rogue herd of 30 to 35 wild red deer."

(And we'd only just written about idiots persecuting wildlife...) Sigh.

Question: What do they mean by "rogue deer"?
Answer: Wildlife.

Any animals that aren't being raised and killed for profit are "rogue".

First humans cut down the forests that covered most of the country. Then we built towns and cities and roads and industrial estates and motorways and factories and power stations. Then, because there were not many totally unspoilt green spaces left, people rushed to visit and explore those remaining. Wildlife once had free reign across the land that was just as much theirs, before the larger species were persecuted and killed. Any large surviving wildlife retreated to the ever-shrinking areas, but even here farmers and idiots want to persecute and kill them.

Best answer? Go vegan. It requires far less land, and the rest could be given over to nature and wildlife. It also cuts off the income to the animal farmers who want to persecute badgers, foxes, deer, and anything else they can't send to a slaughterhouse.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Wildlife Trusts And Forestry Commissions Persecuting Wildlife

Wildlife organisations are made up of people, and therefore can be as prejudiced as any other organisation - they choose one animal to protect, another to kill. Grey squirrels are one of their more frequent targets (covered in the past here and here), since they see grey squirrels as immigrants having an effect on the wildlife organisation's favoured "pure" squirrels. Good old speciesism.

Regardless of how the apologists at the Wildlife Trusts or RSPB try to spin it: killing wildlife is killing wildlife.

We recently discovered that the Wildlife Trusts support killing grey squirrels, and have withdrawn our support from them (and I've removed them from my will, to be replaced with a more compassionate organisation!). The Wildlife Trust are part of Red Squirrels United, who will be "training" volunteers to cull greys, probably with clubs. Sounds lovely, doesn't it. There's a petition here, and more information here.

Monday, 6 March 2017

“How’s Our Wildlife Doing?” The Nature of our Village Report: Penparcau 2016

"If you want to know what a Penparcau hedgehog likes for dinner, what a Feathered Gothic is, or what bright green lizards are up to on Pen Dinas, then have a look at this report." -- Chloe Griffiths

Today we're recommending this: “How’s Our Wildlife Doing?” The Nature of our Village Report: 2016, Penparcau, Aberystwyth. Covering Wildlife Surveys from November 2015 to November 2016. Surveys and report undertaken by Chloe Griffiths for the Nature of our Village Project at Penparcau Community. Published February 2017.

Download it free here!

Amongst others, there are sections on Flowering Plants, Dragonflies, Hoverflies, Butterflies, Moths, Bees, Slugs and Snails, Sharks and Rays, Reptiles and Amphibians, Birds, Mammals, Seashore and Rock Pools, Freshwater Life.

Monday, 27 February 2017

Dwr Cymru Welsh Water Destroy A Meadow

Used to be a wildflower meadow

It was a meadow before, it's a meadow no more ... and we'd only just posted about loss of green spaces bit-by-bit.

Some Aberystwyth residents were surprised recently when one of the local meadows was dug up and laid with road surface instead. This was a wildflower meadow, part of a vital wildlife corridor, and also a route used by runners, walkers and dog walkers around the Dwr Cymru Welsh Water sewage works, that took you through fields and woods. Now it is all blocked off and built over.

A map of the meadow area as it used to be - part of
a loop around the sewage works.
It also impacts the pond area.

Friday, 24 February 2017

Protecting Green Spaces At Every Scale

Ysgol Penweddig

We've written about how, over time, more and more paths are laid, slicing up green areas. "Death by a thousand cuts". It happens at every scale. The photo above was taken recently at Ysgol Penweddig, Aberystwyth. At one point that was one large piece of grass. Then a path was laid across it "for convenience" because some people kept cutting across the grass in order to save a second or two. Then the footpath was widened. Then, as more people cut across the grass from the new path, further paths were laid (some fairly recently). A green area gets sliced up into smaller and smaller wedges. No-one takes an overview of it, no-one steps in to protect the green spaces - perhaps planting bushes, trees and flowerbeds across the areas people were cutting across, to protect them from being trampled. It's always just "one more path". And it is the same with roads and housing estates, up to the scale of things like the proposed M4 extension that would destroy huge areas of important wildlife green spaces, without even fixing the underlying problem - too many people, too many cars, and an assumption that the earth is ours to do with as we wish. In another thirty years there will be so much traffic the bypasses will need bypasses, the roads will need widening, and the same process that has been going on at an accelerating rate for hundreds of years will continue.

Most people – and most politicians too – don’t see or care about the big picture.