AN audacious attempt by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) to undermine the new regulations in respect of culling cormorants has been foiled by the quick actions of the NFA and Martin Salter MP, they claim.
The RSPB erroneously claimed in a press release on January 7 that they were “delighted that intense lobbying by the Society has succeeded in persuading Defra to revise its policies on the control of cormorants, announced last September.
Julian Hughes, the RSPB’s head of species conservation, said: “We’re still challenging the government over its policy on cormorant control, but we are celebrating some early victories. “Significantly Defra has retreated from its initial outrageous objective to reduce the cormorant population. Additionally, some evidence of damage by cormorants to fish stocks is now required before licences to control birds will be issued.”
But NFA president Terry Fell hit back, accusing the RSPB of issuing merely propaganda to shore up their flagging position: “I can confirm that the RSPB statement is not true. DEFRA will not be changing its policy. The RSPB has put its own slant on the situation. This information has come from Martin Salter MP who I have spoken to about the claim.”
“No doubt the media will pick up on this and realise that the RSPB are trying to hoodwink them,” he added.