Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Burning The Stubble!

Lapland Bunting Martin Lofgren 

On Friday last week Lapland Bunting were found at Cockersands which were later the cause of a brief discussion on a birding website I visit daily about the conduct of someone trampling through the stubble field in order to flush and get a more accurate 'picture' of the bird/s. Obviously there were those in defence of the action and those against it in the discussion. But my post isn't about whether or not 'burning the stubble' is good or bad, right or wrong, but is to highlight something I witnessed on the very same day two fields away from the Lapland Bunting/s and which went unnoticed by the entire world and was far more damaging to wildlife than trampling in a field for a small bird.  

Wood Pigeon Warren Baker 

I've seen this car - and others - parked up at Cockersands before, and as a consequence knew what was going on. Someone was in a ditch hidden from view and from the birds he was out to kill, I'm never surprised at the lengths these people will go to but this one was a first for me. This guy had placed three dummy Wood Pigeons well spaced out, I can only assume the dummies were fitted with a mechanical device, or perhaps filled with helium, they were rising and falling to create the impression of birds taking off and coming down in order to get the real thing to follow suit. In this instance if you're a Wood Pigeon these people are dangerously crazed and have warped minds, in my view they are at the other end of the spectrum of what's right and what's wrong when it comes to the welfare of our wildlife. No amount of trampling through a stubble field to find a bird can ever be regarded as a danger to the welfare of wildlife, unlike the 'sportsman' I watched for a few minutes who gets his kicks from blasting birds out the sky as a form of enjoyment....he killed a few Wood Pigeons whilst I was in the area. 

Meanwhile, the person two fields away looking for a small bird failed to do so on several occasions that I personally know of, and when he was successful simply put the bird to flight. I think there are issues for and against 'bush bashing' and 'stubble burning' when it comes to searching for birds, though not exactly life threatening like the actions of the guy from the Dark Ages.

I'D SOONER BE BIRDING!....But no serious chance of doing so at the moment I'm afraid.


Warren Baker said...

Hi Pete,
I've seen these ''sportsmen'' use all sorts of devices to bring the Woodpigeons in to their deaths.....
......and I thought the point of shooting was to keep them off the crops, naa - they just love killing things!

Phil Slade said...

Pete, I think I would have got as clos as possible to the "sportsman", and stood in a very visible position clapping my hands and waving etc, in order to make sure no woodies came close. Presumably the shooter had the relevant permission?

Adam said...

cute pigeon

Richard Pegler said...

You realise just how much of this indescriminate shooting goes on when you look at someweb sites. I was looking for camouflage netting for a hide, and came across all sorts of gismos for attracting wildlife to be shot. Then when you look at the reviews of the equipment by their purchasers you soon see that it's the killing that attracts them, and they'll go to any lengths to satisfy their blood-lust. Sickening doesn't cover it.

Pete Woodruff said...

Warren....Yep, all for fun and positively nothing more.

Phil....Relevant permission?....Have to pass on that one Phil.

Adam....A lot cuter than the dead ones.

Richard....Yep, killing's the attraction and positively nothing more.