Is conservation going backwards?

 

Not been getting much chance to post recently with the workload but after reading about the badger cull pilots getting the go ahead I though it was important to raise this issue.

 

 

In the world of conservation we are always being told to help the Giant Panda or Bengal Tiger yet the animals on the verge of extinction are not the only concern. Sometimes we forget about the animals and environment on our doorstep. With hindsight extinctions both locally and globally could have been prevented but society had different priorities and less scientific insight in the past. Wolves were a common predator so were exterminated from most of Europe and the US. There are 63 mammals classed as ‘conservation dependant‘ and conservation costs money.

Panda Gao Gao in San Diego Zoo, USA

In the US, wolves have been reintroduced, at a cost. Now some states are allowing hunters to shoot them, against scientific advice. In Sweden, a wolf cull was blocked legally by conservation groups since it was not a viable cull. In the UK, foxes have been labelled an urban menace by politicians who suggested a cull, against scientific advice. In the UK, a badger cull pilot has just been given the go ahead, against scientific advice. No doubt there are other examples of countries trying to cull/reduce populations of native animals even if the scientific community are against it.

 

 

This post is just a personal rant after seeing the latest badger cull get the go ahead but if we don’t maintain current populations of animals not at risk through scientifically approved methods, we run the risk of adding to the ever-increasing endangered species list and having to spread conservation budgets ever thinner.

 

 

 

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Wolves in Britain – A quickie

Back at University, I wrote an essay on wolf conservation with an emphasis on its reintroduction to Great Britain. I was hoping to get the essay onto my blog but alas, I can’t find it on this computer. If it isn’t on my old computer when I get chance to check then I will have to spend some time on writing a decent post regarding this issue. So, I thought I would write a brief one as I won’t have time to get into a reasoned argument until half term (only 2 weeks now!).

Gray wolf. Français : Loup. Nederlands: Wolf T...

Wolves were eradicated from this country around 400 years ago, largely through persecution. There is a large body of evidence showing that re-establishing a wolf population in Scotland (maybe Yorkshire is a bit optimistic) would actually be good for the Scottish ecosystem AND boost tourism. Opposition comes largely from the sheep farming industry however, a compensatory system for any sheep losses could be offset by this projected increase in tourism.  This is basically just an introduction to my main post on the matter, which I want to try and dedicate an entire day to writing so I can really hammer it home and show you where a lot of the evidence I use comes from. It would be great to hear your initial thoughts on reintroducing wolves to Scotland, and I will incorporate these into the next post 🙂