Why are conservation charities letting endangered birds fade away?
The UK population of ground nesting birds, particularly red listed curlews and lapwings, continue to face severe declines and urgent conservation action is needed if we are to avoid these birds risking extinction.
This fox was shot after being seen approaching a managed grouse moor from a neighbouring wildlife reserve. It had just eaten three lapwing chicks.
With no natural predators in the UK, fox numbers have continued to increase across the country, and are widely considered to be responsible for the most detrimental impact on these birds. It is because of this that many ground nesting birds now only do well on managed grouse moors, where there is effective management of foxes by gamekeepers.
People have strong opinions about the use of lethal control, and many conservation charities continue to experiment with alternatives such as electrical fencing, however time and time again this has been proven not to work.
Indeed, one conservation charity worker recounted a story of watching a fox jump through the electric fence that had been set up to protect a curlew nest. It swiftly ate all the eggs and then casually jumped out again.
Unless conservation charities start doing what many of them know is necessary, but refuse to advocate through a misguided concern of upsetting their membership, we face a future without many of our most precious species.