Scotland takes wildlife crime seriously, maps raptor poisoning

scotland bird poisoning map

Scotland takes crime against wildlife a bit seriously: they track and map incidents of poisoning of birds of prey. Then, even let the public see the maps so they know where the bird and animal killers are at work.

The third in a series of maps from Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime (PAW) shows that the biggest offenders were in the Scottish Highlands, where 29 of 103 poisoning happened. Tayside, which is much smaller, had 23 incidents. Poisoning birds of prey in the UK is treated as a cultural problem and the usual suspect is an estate’s gamekeeper.

“It’s especially sad that some of the victims, such as sea eagles, are part of reintroduction programmes,” Scottish environment minister Roseanna Cunningham told reporters. “There really has to be a change in attitude amongst those who are persistently involved in killing raptors.”

Sea eagles, or White-tailed eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla), are relatives of the bald eagles and were wiped out in the UK in the early 1900s, but has been reintroduced along the western coast of the Scottish Highlands.

Can you imagine the head of the US EPA (Lisa Jackson) ever mentioning farmers killing wildlife? Of course, U.S. farmers don’t have to because the USDA’s Wildlife Services unit does it for them at a cost of about $121 million.

In the US, wildlife isn’t even really considered an environmental issue. The Fish and Wildlife Service promotes hunting and its wildlife forensics lab is a couple years behind in

Sea Eagle or White-tailed eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla), Scotland

examining carcasses of endangered species.  Meanwhile, the Scottish Agriculture Agency not only works on wildlife crime, it also makes sure that Scottish families don’t get too much pesticide in their food.

Read about the USDA’s Wildlife Services unit

dolphin Where to SEE DOLPHINS
eagle Where to SEE EAGLES

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