Chairman of the Scottish Gamekeepers Association speaks his mind about RSPB tactics.

This is what Alex Hogg, Chairman of the Scottish Gamekeepers Association had to say recently about the RSPB in his latest blog. All very interesting stuff Alex.

AUTUMN MAGAZINE – Managing Scotland’s Wild Places.

So you were concerned that the RSPB may have been brain washing children in schools, well I’ve been handed an edition of the RSPBs Junior Birdlife magazine and in my opinion it’s on an equal footing.

The RSPB in their usual manner are out to get as much cash as possible from any source they can. Their latest ploy is to target children by feeding them emotive propaganda, ‘help our birds of prey, they are in danger because bad people are killing them’, is their simplistic appeal.

No word of the incredible success raptors have enjoyed in the countryside since the cessation of DDT or that their populations have never been higher in recorded history, despite the actions of a few misguided individuals.

500,000 raptors in the UK with a recorded 50 per year being illegally killed that’s 0000.1% of the population. Hardly a danger to their populations as they produce at least 40% plus a year.

What do the RSPB want children to do? Hand over their pocket money! Go out and raise money so they can add it to their multi million pound empire. They are possibly the biggest land owners in the UK yet feel the need to sponge of children. They have, in the past, accused the countryside lobby of Victorian values. Is this not Victorian values by sending children out to earn money for them?

It’s patently obvious that the raptor lobby thinks this type of “education” is acceptable and never question if the means justifies the end.It would have been a bit more palatable if the children were being educated in the ecology, history and economic running of our countryside and with that knowledge then decided to support RSPBs fund raising but few will have heard those aspects, especially from the RSPB.

Indeed they will be, in all probability, reacting to the over simplified and hyped up version promoted by RSPB.

Yes wildlife crime exists and yes it needs to be addressed but to address this by poisoning young minds against certain sectors of the population is worse than the crime itself. There is little education going on here it is more akin to indoctrination.

Over the years you may have come to the conclusion I am not a fan of what the RSPB stand for. You would be wrong. The work done by most RSPB workers, volunteers and members should be applauded. Their self restricted efforts to enhance bird life on these islands is second to none but even their efforts in many instances are futile under the politically correct decisions made by the hypocritical and cynically minded members in the higher echelons in this charity. All of which makes me question the honesty and sincerity this charity portrays.

They claim that they have no axe to grind with game or quarry shooting indeed their charter does not allow them to interfere. However if you check around you’ll discover how, in some areas, they have tried to close down or restrict estuary shooting for wildfowl. The amendments produced in the WANE bill by their MSP supporters, if implemented, would have been detrimental to the game industry. How much of a lobbying hand did they have in this?

Let’s face it, at the moment the only people with the wildlife experience or likelihood of challenging the wildlife management decisions of the RSPB are the troublesome shooting lobby. Without them the RSPB could do as they please

So is it me being cynical in my thinking or are the RSPB working to the old adage ‘there’s more than one way to skin a cat’.

10 comments to Chairman of the Scottish Gamekeepers Association speaks his mind about RSPB tactics.

  • John Miles

    Not many cats are skinned any more unless they are the totally protected ‘Wild Cat’ which are on the verge of extinction in Britain due to – Yes you guessed it – game keepers and their traps and snares.

  • As much as it pains me to agree with Mr Alex Hogg, I do believe that the RSPB have been guilty of “mission creep”. Legal protection for our wonderful bird life was and is an excellent cause. However, gross exaggeration and outright lies are unacceptable. You would have expected the RSPB to pin medals on those falconers such as Philip Glasier and others whom showed that all kinds of BOP could and would reproduce in captivity, especially as this occurred at a time when our raptors were at a low ebb in the wild. Instead they came out with cheap shots such as ” you never bred them, you stole them from the wild and pretended that you bred them”. Luckily DNA profiling came along and put them in their place.

    A few years ago, when some young falcons went missing from a nest in northern england, an RSPB spokesperson claimed it must be the work of wicked falconers, since some men with ropes had been seen in the area. Have the RSPB never heard of rock climbers? The investigating police officer refused to make any such claim. Even some ardent conservationists are now forming the opinion that the protectionists have gone over the top. I will always join with any individual or society to condemn illegal acts against our wildlife, but only when these are based on facts rather than supposition.

    • TerryPickford, North West Raptor Protection Group

      Doug, you will find that any data published by the RSPB regarding incidents of bird crime are backed up by facts and not supposition. In fact before an incident is included within their Bird Crime document the RSPB go over the top to make 100% sure the facts have been validated with tangible evidence. Indeed I able to say from my own experience that of those incidents that are included in this document there are as many more which the RSPB have left out because of a number of valid reasons. The numbers of criminal incidents directed against BOP published by the RSPB are certainly only a small proportion of the true number, the majority of which go undetected each year. The tip of a very large ice-burg I are sure, of which the RSPB, the police and Natural England do not have the financial or man power resources to combat, a situation which will only get worst in the present economic climate not better.

  • gamehawker

    Sorry Mr Miles your very VERY wrong on that account,the felis domesticus hybrididation with scottish wildcat will be its downfall. FACTS GET THEM RIGHT PLEASE.

  • Coop

    Alex Hogg “speaks his mind”…and what a tiny one it is!

  • Circus maximus

    Hybridisation is a real problem for the few that are left…by why are there only a few left?
    Mr Gamehawker I suggest you check the vermin diaries that the keepers have kept over the years..facts indeed….unless of course these diaries a full of lies?

  • John Miles

    Gamehawker – I know my facts. Their is no such thing as a Scottish Wild Cat. You will find that Wild Cat is part of a European base and when you use the words ‘Scottish’ it can destroy any attempts to reintroduce the species to sites where it has been wiped out like Cumbria. In fact in Cumbria there are no hybrids therefore it would be a better location for reintroduction than parts of the Highlands where hybrids do exist. A small population of Wild Cats which have been created by persecution can also be the reason for hybridization.

  • Jock Scott

    Terry Pickford, I’m afraid that the points you make to Doug Tricker are simply not true.
    In the RSPB Birdcrime Report incidents are divided into 3 categories, unconfirmed, probable and confirmed.
    Of these the first 2 definitions are –
    Unconfirmed – the
    circumstances indicate an illegal
    act has possibly taken place.
    Probable – the circumstances
    indicate that by far the most
    likely explanation is that an illegal
    act has taken place.
    The 3rd is self explanatory.
    The RSPB only report the findings of field workers and what their personal opinion is regarding a nest failure, missing pair of birds etc. It is only the “confirmed” incidents which may be relyed upon as factual.

  • paul williams

    It is against the law to climb near nesting Peregrines if the climber disturbs them. All the climbers I have met at a 24/7 Peregrine watch in Lancashire understand this and wait until the young falcons have fledged.

  • Perhaps the RSPB should have a bit more control over some of their “field workers” then as in some cases they are and have been the very cause of birds deserting their nests.

    What gave field workers the right to mark eggs, causing desertion, even when they were told this would happen. Why did a certain WCO have his photograph taken laying along side a ground nesting peregrine site containing young Peregrines in which was plastered all over the newspaper.

    The RSPB are losing control, and yes they are trying to brainwash people and I am not suprised that they are targeting young people. Is it about birds or is it about money? I think we all know the answer to that one.