Activist trespasser Guy Shrubsole sabotages legal trap on biodiversity rich estate
Activist trespasser, Guy Shrubsole, has been boasting about his sabotage of a legal larsen trap on a recent trip on the South Downs.
Boasting to his followers, Shrubsole posted a picture of himself tampering with the trap and removing a crow, which is illegal.
The 4,500 estate where the sabotage took place has been widely applauded by conservationists for its remarkable increase in endangered birds, such as corn bunting, lapwing, curlews and grey partridge. This is as a result of habitat, food sources and predator control.
Shrubsole’s actions were widely condemned on social media by conservationists and ornithologists.
One reader commented: “Your lack of understanding and need to interfere, regarding targeted crow control is very disappointing, Guy. In essence you’re undoing the great work of many conservationists.”
Commenting on Larsen traps, Wildlife crime officer, PC Andy Marsden, said: “It is important that legal traps are not interfered with, as they play a part in reducing the predation of eggs and chicks of ground nesting birds such as lapwings and curlews. If you discover one of these traps and you are not certain of its use, please do not take it upon yourself to interfere with it.”
According to research by the GWCT predation control of corvids can improve the breeding success of farmland hedgerow-nesting songbirds. Scientists carried out a large field experiment between 2011 and 2014, which is described in a recently published scientific paper.
Over the four years, they worked with farmers and estate managers in southern England at 32 paired sites each around 4 km2 in area, studying four different pairs per year. At random within each pair of sites, crows and magpies (corvids) were removed at one site by gamekeepers or other trained staff during the breeding season using best-practice trapping techniques; no removal took place at the other site. The nesting success of breeding birds was measured by the GWCT research team using a new fledged-brood counting method.
Another viewer angrily commented: “Aren’t you aware of the negative impact of your actions & the consequences of the terrible example you’re setting? Huge unintended negatives can arise from this ‘free for all’ attitude”.