nature s voice BIRDCRIME 2009 Offences against wild bird legislation in 2009

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1 nature s voice BIRDCRIME 2009 Offences against wild bird legislation in 2009

2 Contents Contacts The RSPB UK Headquarters The Lodge, Sandy, Bedfordshire SG19 2DL. Tel: Northern Ireland Headquarters Belvoir Park Forest, Belfast BT8 7QT. Tel: Scotland Headquarters Dunedin House, 25 Ravelston Terrace, Edinburgh EH4 3TP Tel: From November 2010, Ground Floor, 2 Lochside View, Edinburgh Park, Edinburgh, EH12 9DH Wales Headquarters Sutherland House, Castlebridge, Cowbridge Road East, Cardiff CF11 9AB. Tel: The Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime (PAW) PAW is a multi-agency body comprising representatives of the organisations involved in wildlife law enforcement in the UK. It provides opportunities for statutory and non-government organisations to work together to combat wildlife crime. Its main objective is to promote the enforcement of wildlife conservation legislation, particularly through supporting the networks of Police Wildlife Crime Officers and officers from HM Revenue and Customs and UK Border Agency. Please visit for more information. The views expressed in Birdcrime are not necessarily those of the RSPB or PAW. Introduction 20 years of tackling wild bird crime 2 Foreword 4 Summary of reported incidents RSPB recommendations 7 Birds of prey updates 8 Map of confirmed UK bird of prey persecution incidents Poisoning 16 Map of confirmed UK bird of prey persecution incidents in Shooting and destruction of birds of prey 26 Egg collecting and disturbance 30 Trade in wild birds and taxidermy 34 Prosecutions 36 Review of National Wildlife Crime Unit 40 Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime 42 Legal issues 44 International update 48 Appendix I Incidents reported to the RSPB Appendix II Regional breakdown of incidents reported in Appendix III Confirmed and probable bird of prey and owl persecution during Appendix IV Confirmed poison abuse incidents during Appendix V Schedule 1 nest robberies during Appendix VI Bird-related prosecutions in

3 Introduction Contents Grahame Madge (rspb-images.com) I was Director of Conservation when the RSPB produced its first annual Birdcrime report in Twenty years on, and as my time at the RSPB draws to a close, it is worth reflecting on what has changed for the better and what still needs to be done. Overall, the fortunes of our birds of prey have improved markedly in that time. In 1990, if a buzzard flew over the RSPB s HQ in Bedfordshire, people would come out of their offices to see what was then a rare bird locally. Today, seeing buzzards circle over The Lodge is a common occurrence. Buzzards and sparrowhawks have made a remarkable comeback and continue to spread into former haunts in the east of the country. We believe this is due to reduced persecution and warmly welcome the changes in attitude in the countryside that have allowed this. Ospreys and marsh harriers have more than tripled their numbers the former proving a huge hit with visitors to viewing schemes in England, Scotland and Wales. Scottish white-tailed eagles have slowly increased from a precarious handful to almost 50 breeding pairs. Red kites, helped by a re-introduction programme, now number more than 1,500 pairs and can be seen in all four countries of the UK. These conservation advances should be celebrated. The fight to tackle wildlife crime has also seen notable successes. The illegal taking of peregrine and goshawk chicks from the wild for falconry reduced dramatically after the RSPB pioneered the use of DNA profiling to challenge bogus captive breeding claims. Unfortunately, this success has been tempered by the previous government s decision to relax registration requirements for these birds and there are worrying signs of an upturn in nest robberies involving peregrines in recent times. The sustained reduction in the curious practice of egg collecting, following the introduction of custodial sentences in 2001, is very pleasing. I am proud of the RSPB s track record in tackling egg thieves, and of the experience, developed over many years, that we can bring to police investigations to ensure successful prosecutions. Although the prospects for many of our birds of prey are now quite bright, we must remain mindful of the sickening impacts of illegal persecution. This has pushed the hen harrier to the brink of extinction as an English breeding species for a second time and continues to threaten the status of Scotland s golden eagles. Widespread illegal poisoning presents an insidious threat to scavenging birds of prey. This is principally why red kites re-introduced to the Black Isle number a fraction of those in south-east England, in a re-introduction project that began at the same time and involved the same number of founder birds. Poisoning has also led to the loss of two white-tailed eagles re-introduced into eastern Scotland. The gathering of more than 210,000 pledges calling for an end to the illegal killing of birds of prey illustrates the depth of public feeling on this issue such barbaric practices have no place in the UK in the 21st century. The degree of overlap between the killing of birds of prey and driven grouse moor management in the uplands of England and Scotland is striking and needs to be robustly addressed by government if we are to see meaningful progress. Encouragingly, the statutory agencies take wildlife crime much more seriously than they did 20 years ago. Significant developments include the formation of the National Wildlife Crime Unit, the development of the Wildlife Crime Officers network and agreement on UK wildlife crime priorities, to guide intelligence gathering and enforcement activity. Close working relationships have been forged between government and voluntary sector organisations, and this partnership approach to tackling wildlife crime strengthens our cause considerably. Success should ultimately be measured in terms of healthy populations of those species currently blighted by persecution. It may take another 20 years, but I would dearly love to see golden eagles breeding in and soaring over the hills of northern England once more. Such a sight is a feature of our upland landscape that has been denied to too many for too long. And it is one that can be simply reinstated, through a meaningful commitment from those who persist in killing our wonderful birds of prey to put their prejudices to one side, act in the public good and stop the killing. That s all we ask. Sir Graham Wynne Ian McCarthy (rspb-images.com) 2 3

4 Foreword Courtesy of Lincolnshire police It is 12 months since I assumed the lead on wildlife crime for the Association of Chief Police Officers. Before then, like the majority of police officers, wildlife crime had been an issue that seldom appeared on my professional horizon. If nothing else, the past year has served to show me that wildlife crime is an issue that the police need to pay regard to. There is ample evidence to demonstrate (and I am personally convinced) that such criminal activities can be linked with other areas of crime, are serious and frequently motivated by financial gain. It is now some years since UK wildlife crime priorities were first identified; they are reviewed every year. Each year the persecution of birds of prey remains a priority; sadly Birdcrime 2009 once again paints a very clear picture why. Let me make my position quite clear: the illegal killing or persecution of birds of prey is totally unacceptable, the protection offered to birds of prey by the law is clear and the police will enforce that legislation. The bird of prey wildlife crime priority focuses on five iconic species (golden eagle, whitetailed eagle, red kite, goshawk and hen harrier). That said it is clear that those who persecute those species are equally likely to persecute other birds of prey. For that reason I am determined to ensure that all incidents of persecution, whether they involve hen harrier or buzzard, goshawk or sparrowhawk, will be investigated in an effective professional manner. The police service is committed to maintaining public confidence amongst all the communities we serve. I lead a force with a large rural area and I understand the concerns that some sections of rural communities may have. Understanding those issues does not, however, mean that we turn a blind eye to activities that are not socially or legally acceptable. Our duty is to enforce the law and we will bring the same level of resource and professionalism to bird of prey persecution that we do to other criminal investigations. Of course one incident of bird of prey persecution is one too many and it is entirely appropriate that the police service enjoys a good working relationship with the RSPB. I speak regularly to a wide range of groups and organisations who represent other sections of the rural community and those who are interested in countryside sports. I am particularly pleased to see such groups coming to the table: their influence and expertise can be of great assistance. Bird of prey persecution is a complex matter but the police position is quite clear. The way forward must involve all interested groups working to resolve the issues associated with birds of prey. Such work has to include the unequivocal message that persecution is illegal and unacceptable. Richard Crompton, Chief Constable, Lincolnshire Police and ACPO lead for wildlife crime Mark Sisson (rspb-images.com) 4 5

5 Summary of reported incidents in 2009 RSPB recommendations on priorities for government action This report summarises offences against wild bird legislation reported to the RSPB in Further copies are available on request from the RSPB Investigations Section at The Lodge, Sandy, Bedfordshire SG19 2DL, or from the RSPB website, This report differs slightly from previous Birdcrime reports, as there is no total figure reported regarding all categories of wild bird crime. The National Wildlife Crime Unit (NWCU) receives data on incidents of wild bird crime from police forces across the UK, as well as the RSPB and RSPCA. This enables the NWCU to publish a total figure for wild bird crime in the UK in its annual report, at the end of each financial year. With this process now in place, RSPB Investigations are able to focus their finite resources on wild bird crime affecting species of higher conservation concern, and crime that is serious and organised. Incidents are recorded in three categories: 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. Confirmed the circumstances indicate an illegal act has taken place. These incidents are typically substantiated by evidence such as post mortem or toxicological analysis (eg shooting and poisoning cases), or reliable eye-witness evidence. During 2009 the RSPB received: 158 reports of poisoning incidents, including 85 confirmed incidents of abuse (see Appendix IV) involving the poisoning of at least 81 individual birds or animals. 268 reports of shooting and destruction of birds of prey, with the confirmed shooting of at least 32 individual birds of prey. 63 reported egg-collecting incidents, including 10 confirmed and 23 probable nest robberies from Schedule 1 species; 34 reports related to illegal disturbance or photography of Schedule 1 birds. 65 reports of illegal taking, possession or sale of birds of prey. 99 reports of illegal taking, possession or sale of wild birds other than birds of prey, predominantly finches. The higher levels of reported incidents in recent years are due in large part to improved recording and reporting. However, it is believed that these published figures represent only a fraction of the number of incidents regarding each category, as many remain undetected and unreported, particularly those that occur in remote areas. The UK breakdown of reported bird of prey persecution incidents published in this report shows that 58% of reports come from England, 31% in Scotland, 5% in Wales and 3% in Northern Ireland (3% occurred in an unknown location in the UK). The figures reported here are only the tip of the iceberg. Persecution continues to have a conservation-level impact on several priority species, including the golden eagle and hen harrier. In 2009, the RSPB received information on 35 individual prosecutions involving wild birds. These cases involved a total of 120 charges, of which 85 were proven. Fines for the year totalled 6,895 and seven people were given prison sentences (three of which were suspended sentences). Alamy Commitment from all UK Governments to maintain legal protection for all birds of prey and to improve its enforcement. (see page 14). Conduct a full review of the enforcement of wildlife crime in England and Wales, and fully implement the recommendations of the thematic review in Scotland. (see page 15). Secure long-term funding for the National Wildlife Crime Unit (NWCU). (see page 41). Increase support for the UK Wildlife Crime Priority to tackle raptor persecution and address inadequate law enforcement. (see page 20). Add peregrine to the species covered by the raptor persecution UK Wildlife Crime Priority. (see page 13). Increase effectiveness and profile of the Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime (PAW). (see page 43). Introduction of a vicarious liability offence to make managers and employers responsible for the actions of their gamekeepers. (see page 39). Improve recording and reporting of wildlife crime and make the killing of birds of prey a recorded crime. (see page 27). Update legislative provisions in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, including controls on possession of pesticides. (see page 47). Work with the European Union to strengthen the penalties available under cross compliance so that anyone contravening EU Wildlife Directives faces having their single farm payment withdrawn. (see page 25). Modernise the regulation of game shooting. (see page 37). 6 7

6 Birds of prey: a 20 year perspective Birds of prey have a mixed history in the UK. When the first Birdcrime report was launched 20 years ago, optimism was high that, with full legal protection, birds of prey could once again prosper. Some species have recovered spectacularly in the last 20 years. However, legal protection has not seen the end of persecution, and other species continue to suffer greatly. The challenge now is to enforce properly the legislation protecting birds of prey, ensuring that the successes of the last 20 years can be sustained and expanded to benefit all species and areas. There is much to celebrate but the similarity of Birdcrime 2009 to every report of the last 20 years is notable is the International Year of Biodiversity. It should also be the beginning of the end of illegal killing of birds of prey. Ray Kennedy (rspb-images.com) Golden eagle The UK s golden eagle population has stayed roughly stable since 1990, although this masks significant regional variation. There remains little prospect of this iconic species of the Scottish uplands returning to its former haunts further south. As in 1990, in 2010 the main limiting factor remains illegal killing. In 2008, Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) published A Conservation Framework for Golden Eagles: implications for their conservation and management in Scotland. This was produced in partnership with other members of the Scottish Raptor Monitoring Scheme: Scottish Raptor Study Groups, Rare Breeding Birds Panel, RSPB Scotland, BTO Scotland and Joint Nature Conservation Committee. The report confirmed that some parts of Scotland no longer have viable populations of golden eagles, despite ideal habitat. There is clear evidence of decline in areas where illegal poisoning continues in the uplands of Scotland. Since 1990, at least 23 birds are known to have been poisoned. In 2009, two poisoning cases involved this species, one in Argyll and the other in the Angus Glens (see pages 17 and 18). These cases demonstrate that young golden eagles are not being allowed to pioneer into areas that should hold breeding birds and the framework report found that only three out of 16 regions, all in western Scotland, had stable or expanding golden eagle populations occupying most of the existing suitable habitat. The report looked at 10 factors affecting golden eagle populations, ranging from sheep grazing to wind farms. Results showed illegal persecution to be the most severe constraint, and incidents of persecution were more common where grouse moor management predominated. White-tailed eagle White-tailed eagles were driven to extinction in the UK by 1916, due to intense and long-standing persecution. They were brought back by a carefully planned re-introduction programme, initiated in 1975 by the Nature Conservancy Council in collaboration with the RSPB, with 82 young eagles released on the island of Rum over 10 years. This was reinforced by a second wave of 58 young birds released in Wester Ross between 1993 and A third reintroduction scheme, based in eastern Scotland, started in 2007 with a similar project getting underway in County Kerry in the Republic of Ireland in the same year. Following these re-introductions there has been a slow but steady rise in the British white-tailed eagle population, which currently stands at 46 breeding pairs. The population in west Scotland is estimated to be growing at 10% per year and is regarded as selfsustaining. Although the factors that caused its extinction are now greatly diminished and there has been a trend of steady recovery, the white-tailed eagle remains a red list species of high conservation concern. Illegal killing is sadly still a problem, largely due to the lingering but misguided belief that white-tailed eagles pose a significant threat to game management and sheep rearing interests. At least six eagles have died from poisoned baits since the start of the reintroduction projects in the UK and, although this number may seem small, this constitutes a large proportion of the total population and is a particular problem for such a long-lived, slow reproducing species. The past 20 years have seen an encouraging growth in the whitetailed eagle population and, provided that illegal killing and egg collecting do not limit breeding success and survival, this trend seems set to continue. Nevertheless, the current population remains small and the slow maturation of this species makes it particularly vulnerable. Protection and surveillance will continue to play an important role in safeguarding nesting birds from illegal disturbance and nest robbing in the future. As the white-tailed eagle s range increases, through both natural range expansion and further reintroduction projects, it will become increasingly important to communicate the negligible risk white-tailed eagles pose to human interests if these birds are to thrive alongside people, as they do elsewhere in their European range. Chris Gomersall (rspb-images.com) 8 9

7 Birds of prey: a 20 year perspective Hen harrier The 1990 Birdcrime report makes interesting reading, highlighting 29 reported incidents involving hen harriers and noting that a high proportion of these incidents occurred on managed grouse moors. At this time, a national survey found only 578 territorial pairs in the UK and Isle of Man, with just 18 in England. Fast forward 20 years and there is some good news, as the 2004 national survey found 806 territorial pairs an encouraging increase. However, this is where the good news stops. The persecution of hen harriers on land managed for driven grouse shooting remains rife. A scientific study from 1988 to 1995 confirmed the impact of persecution in Scotland. Nest success was much lower on moorland managed for grouse than on other heather moorland or in young conifer plantations. Human interference was recorded on half the grouse estates studied. Annual survival of breeding female hen harriers on these estates was about half that on other moorland. efforts of the RSPB and Natural England. Numbers have remained perilously low with only six successful nests in 2009, and the very real risk of losing it as a breeding species. Across the UK it is believed the land managed for driven grouse shooting is sufficient to support 500 pairs of breeding hen harriers in 2008 there were just five successful pairs. Prosecuting these offences remains incredibly difficult. A prolonged RSPB surveillance operation in 2000 led to the first conviction for the killing of a hen harrier, with a further success a few years later. Unfortunately, subsequent enforcement work by the statutory agencies has seen few successes. The RSPB believes that rapid progress is required in several respects, described in a discussion paper published in the Journal of Applied Ecology in Importantly, hen harriers must be allowed to settle and breed successfully on grouse moors, in a context of firmer law enforcement and the application of novel legislative tools. Diversionary feeding must also be tested more widely. Any serious attempt to resolve this conflict needs to account for the wider context of environmental delivery and public opinion, and seek solutions across the range of management options available, including alternative models of grouse shooting. Andy Hay (rspb-images.com) Goshawk The goshawk was the first bird of prey to be driven to extinction in the UK, in Following re-establishment in the 1950s, goshawks recovered substantially in some areas, once again haunting remote areas of wild woodland across much of the UK. Indeed in areas such as the New Forest, use of nest cameras now allows visitors to experience a rare glimpse into the private life of the phantom of the forest. However, despite this recovery, illegal killing has remained a problem, particularly on land managed for shooting interests. The situation in the north-east of the Peak District National Park is unfortunately typical. During the period 1991 to 2006, previously stable populations of up to 13 pairs of goshawks (and peregrines) in the area crashed. Prior to this, the area had been popular with birdwatchers as an unusually good site to see the normally elusive bird. The goshawks fortunes took a serious downturn in 1999, when several nests failed for no obvious reason. By 2001, only one goshawk territory remained, and peregrines had completely disappeared. In 2002, no territories of either species were found. There is no indication that there is less food, less suitable habitat, fewer nest sites, or any other natural explanation to account for the catastrophic decline of these birds in the north-east Peak. Given the shocking scale and suddenness of the decline, conservationists feel it is highly likely that illegal persecution is the cause. Worryingly, previously reliable goshawk and peregrine nests in the neighbouring Derwent Valley have now also begun to fail, despite a partnership nest protection scheme. It appears the problem is spreading. Work on the smaller English population, between 2002 and 2008, showed similar results with only 26% of nests on grouse moors outside of the Bowland Fells fledging chicks. The situation in England is of particular concern despite the After 1996, peregrine and goshawk territories began to disappear from the north-east Peak Moors. By 2006, there were none left and they have not bred here since

8 Birds of prey: a 20 year perspective Red kite The recovery of the red kite, from the brink of extinction to more than 1,500 pairs, is one of the UK s greatest conservation success stories. In 1990, the same year as the first Birdcrime report was launched, the first re-introduced red kites were released into the UK. The first two red kite projects were situated in the Chilterns, England, and the Black Isle, Scotland. Over the three year release periods, the same number of birds were released in both sites. By 2009, the Chilterns population had taken off. There are well over 300 pairs and kites are once again seen regularly in the countryside. However, red kites do still face threats. Although the recoveries could not have occurred without significant progress from the intolerance and persecution of the 19th century, illegal poisoning remains a major concern in some areas. As excellent scavengers, kites are very vulnerable to poisoning. At least 139 red kites are known to have been poisoned in the last 20 years. Despite all the similarities between the Chilterns and Black Isle populations, the red kite population in the latter remains at around 40 pairs. A recent study found that 40% of the 103 red kites found dead in northern Scotland during the project had been killed illegally, mainly by direct poisoning. This study used population models to show that if the effects of illegal poisoning were removed, the Black Isle population would have increased to 300 pairs by 2006 very similar to the population growth seen in the Chilterns. It therefore seems clear that, in northern Scotland, illegal poisoning continues to severely hamper population recovery of red kites. Nor is the problem limited to northern Scotland. Elsewhere in Europe, red kites are declining markedly. The new European species action plan identifies illegal poisoning as the single most important cause. Other UK introductions, including the ongoing project in Northern Ireland, have also lost birds to poisoning (see page 22), but here these few cases do not appear to be slowing population growth. Clearly, despite the huge successes of the last 20 years, red kites continue to face unacceptable threats from the illegal use of poison baits. Although kites continue to flourish across much of the UK, the northern Scotland population remains severely depressed by this. Given the declines in the rest of the kite s range, the importance of our increasing UK population will continue to rise (the UK now holds around 7% of the global red kite population) and every possible step must be taken to finally bring about an end to illegal poisonings. Chris Gomersall (rspb-images.com) Peregrine Peregrines are probably now doing better than they have been at any time in the last 100 years. After dropping to a low of only 360 pairs in the 1960s, the ban on organochlorine pesticides, such as DDT, has allowed peregrines to recover to over 1,400 pairs during the most recent UK survey in Indeed many have now moved into city centres, nesting on major landmarks and provide thousands of people with the opportunity to experience this spectacular bird at close quarters. The first Birdcrime report 20 years ago highlighted the work of German falconers taking eggs and chicks of UK peregrines. Indeed, at this time the level of reported egg and chick thefts of peregrines was nearly twice as high as any other species. In 1991, the RSPB undertook its last private prosecution involving the first use of DNA profiling in a wildlife case to challenge breeding claims of a bird of prey keeper. Following this success, the RSPB was instrumental in pushing forward several high profile cases, most involving peregrines, which revealed widespread criminality across the UK. Significant custodial sentences were awarded in two cases. Encouragingly, there appeared to be a dramatic deterrent effect with a reduction in wild nest robberies and convictions. Whilst this remains one of the most significant wildlife crime success stories in the last 20 years, recent controversial changes to the statutory Schedule 4 registration scheme have threatened to undermine this work. Despite the forensic advances in DNA profiling, the failure to expand the registration scheme to take advantage of this work and improve enforcement capability has been particularly disappointing. The reduction in protection for peregrines is of particular concern, and initial indications show an increase in raids on wild nests. At the time of preparing Birdcrime, a man was charged with taking 14 live peregrine eggs from sites in Wales and attempting to smuggle them out of the EU. Such events show there is still a demand in the falconry world for birds of wild origin. Throughout the last 20 years, peregrines have remained unpopular on many upland grouse moors, and this continues to affect breeding density and productivity across large areas. Peregrines remain conspicuously absent from some areas, such as the north east Peak District (see page 11) due to suspected persecution. Danny Green (rspb-images.com) Peregrines have suffered from human persecution for many decades and this continues to negatively affect populations particularly in the UK s uplands. It is therefore odd that peregrine is not included as one of the species under the raptor persecution wildlife crime priority. RSPB recommendation Add peregrine to the species covered by the raptor persecution UK Wildlife Crime Priority

9 Confirmed bird of prey and owl persecution incidents ,567 say: Stop killing birds of prey! Steve Knell (rspb-images.com) On 3 February 2010, the then Wildlife Minister, Huw Irranca- Davies, accepted a petition signed by more than 200,000 people demanding an end to the killing of birds of prey: at that time, the largest petition ever collected by the RSPB. The campaign was also supported by 30 organisations, including statutory agencies, conservation bodies, countryside user groups and shooting organisations, illustrating the huge depth and breadth of support for improved efforts to tackle the illegal killing of raptors. Huw Irranca-Davies said, I m delighted to support this RSPB campaign and it s great to see that hundreds of thousands of people want to see these marvellous birds of prey protected. Most bird of prey populations are doing well but the persecution of birds of prey is one of the priorities dealt with by our Wildlife Crime Unit who work to protect these very special birds. A further hand-in took place in Edinburgh on 2 March, with RSPB Scotland handing over 21,500 bird of prey pledges, and a petition to the Scottish Parliament s petitions committee. The petition document, which was presented by RSPB Scotland director Stuart Housden, also urges the Scottish Parliament to give wildlife crimes greater priority and for more resources to go towards tackling the problem. Hand-ins also took place with relevant ministers in Wales and Northern Ireland. This support is obviously welcome, but it is now vital that it is borne out in the actions of all governments, to defend the strong legal protection afforded to birds of prey and ensure positive steps are taken to improve its enforcement. The map clearly shows the extent and intensity of bird of prey persecution over the past 20 years. Whilst most species continue to recover from the effects of historical persecution, several remain badly affected. Legal protection for all species remains vital. McHugh (RSPB) The huge coalition on individuals and organisations who demanded a long overdue end to the illegal killing of birds of prey clearly demonstrates the extent of support for more to be done. At a time when funds are very tight, a review that identifies the most effective approaches to tackling wildlife crime is vital. RSPB recommendation Commitment from all UK Governments to maintain legal protection for all birds of prey and to improve its enforcement. 14 Note: The number of mapped incidents is fewer than the number of confirmed incidents recorded by the RSPB as not all incidents can be allocated a grid reference. Persecution incidents are defined as the illegal poisoning, shooting, trapping and nest destruction of birds of prey and owls. The total figure given at the top of this page is the total number of confirmed incidents. The numbers in brackets are the number of squares in each category on the map. Huw Irranca-Davies (left) accepting the RSPB petition outside the Houses of Parliament from the RSPB s Director of Conservation, Dr Mark Avery, in front of a giant peregrine mosaic held aloft by supporters of the campaign. RSPB recommendation Conduct a full review of the enforcement of wildlife crime in England and Wales, and fully implement the recommendations of the thematic review in Scotland. 15

10 1 Poisoning Case studies Golden eagle Alma poisoned Scottish bird of prey poisonings rise to near record levels Gamekeeper escapes jail Hen Harrier. Persecution is prime cause of disappearance, says Natural England Second Golden eagle found dead poisoned in Scotland this year Scotland s Red Kites under threat from illegal killing Police raid Scottish grouse moor after poisoned Red Kite is found dead Golden eagle tagged in conservation plan found poisoned to death North Yorkshire Police: Appeal to trace Red Kite killers Peregrine persecution incidents increasing Anger as peregrine falcon poisoned in Cumbria Gamekeeper admits killing buzzard In 2009, there were 158 reported incidents of wildlife poisoning and pesticide-related offences. This is higher than the 136 incidents reported in 2008 and also above the average number of incidents reported over the last five years ( average of 142 incidents). There were 85 incidents where abuse of a pesticide was confirmed by analysis of victim and/or bait ( average of 68 confirmed abuse incidents). The confirmed abuse incidents in 2009 involved the poisonings of at least 81 individual birds or animals. In addition to the 85 confirmed pesticide abuse incidents, there were also eight confirmed incidents of illegal possession of pesticides and seven confirmed incidents of birds of prey dying through secondary rodenticide poisoning. When examining which pesticide was involved in each of the reported incidents, it was found that the trend from previous years has prevailed and the most commonly abused pesticide was carbofuran, with 37 confirmed incidents. The tragic poisoning of Alma was not the only shocking golden eagle death in In 2007, a golden eagle, known as Alma, was fitted with a satellite-tag on the Glenfeshie estate in the Cairngorms National Park. This was part of a Scottish government-funded long-term conservation project. Alma was a young female golden eagle whose daily movements had been tracked on a website managed by Roy Dennis MBE, one of Scotland s leading conservationists. The daily records showed that Alma had travelled widely, going north to Wester Ross before the signal indicated she had stopped moving on an Angus grouse moor, more than 100 miles from her birthplace. The body was recovered by police and the RSPB, and analysis confirmed this bird had been poisoned. On 30 July 2009, Tayside police, again supported by the National Wildlife Crime Unit, government officials and the RSPB, searched the Millden estate near Brechin in Angus. The grouse moor, keepers cottages and vehicles were subject to an extensive search and investigations continue. Roy Dennis said, It's just tragic because, as the months went by, this bird became more and more interesting. Hundreds of people had been following her online, and she is nationally known. It just beggars belief that she has been poisoned. Scottish environment minister Roseanna Cunningham said, I am truly appalled that yet another golden eagle has been illegally killed in Scotland the second this summer. Illegal poisoning is simply inexcusable and while the perpetrators are certainly beneath contempt they are in no way above the law Ewan Weston

11 Golden eagle poisoned Glen Orchy, Argyll White-tailed eagles still under threat Mark Hamblin (rspb-images.com) RSPB 2009 was a terrible year, with at least two golden eagles poisoned in Scotland. The RSPB is concerned at the lack of police action following the poisoning of a second white-tailed eagle in Angus. In June 2009, walkers spotted a dead golden eagle on Beinn Udlaidh in Argyll, and reported the incident to RSPB staff, who alerted Strathclyde police. Chemists from Science and Advice for Scottish Agriculture, a division of the Scottish Government, confirmed that the eagle had died from poisoning caused by ingesting toxic insecticide. Officers from the Oban Community Policing Team, with specialist wildlife officers from Strathclyde, Lothian and Borders and Central Scotland police, and the National Wildlife Crime Unit, assisted by the RSPB, the Scottish SPCA and pesticide experts from the Scottish Government, made an extensive search of the Beinn Udlaidh area. The operation included searches of premises in Glen Orchy and Bridge of Orchy. Police now have a positive line of enquiry. Bob Elliot, Head of Investigations with RSPB Scotland, said, 2009 was a terrible year, with at least two golden eagles poisoned in Scotland. It s shocking to think that such iconic birds can still suffer such a terrible death. It s shocking to think that such iconic birds can still suffer such a terrible death On 6 August 2009, a dead white-tailed eagle was found on the Glenogil Estate. It had been poisoned by the banned pesticide carbofuran. This bird was one of the eagles donated by Norway to Scotland in June 2008 as part of the ongoing East Scotland Release Project, a partnership between RSPB Scotland, Scottish Natural Heritage and Forestry Commission Scotland. In May 2006, a dead rabbit laced with carbofuran was discovered on the same estate and in June 2006, a follow-up operation by Tayside police and partner organisations yielded another poisoned bait, and found that samples taken from estate vehicles and equipment tested positive for carbofuran. The estate owner had 107,000 withdrawn from his single farm payment. This decision is currently being appealed. In May 2008, a white-tailed eagle was found poisoned just outside the estate. Three days later, a follow-up by Tayside police and the RSPB discovered a dead buzzard and remains of a hare in the same area. On estate boundary fence posts, 32 pieces of meat were found. All these tested positive for carbofuran and other pesticides. Despite the seriousness and scale of the incidents, the RSPB was concerned at the time that there was no follow-up enforcement action. In March 2009, Tayside police and the RSPB recovered two further dead buzzards from the estate; both tested positive for carbofuran. Duncan Orr Ewing, Head of Species and Land Management at RSPB Scotland, said it was an utterly despicable crime and pointed out that once again it has been found in an area where sporting estates dominate the 18 19

12 Peregrines still under pressure landscape. Orr-Ewing said the litany of incidents in certain parts of the Angus Glens should justify the deployment of all possible resources to identify those responsible and then consider the full range of sanctions to tackle the perpetrators. An utterly despicable crime. Scottish environment minister Roseanna Cunningham condemned the appalling crime against a magnificent bird of prey. It is a cruel irony that the sea eagle, reintroduced following extinction, is still being persecuted. The most recent incident involving the death of the second white- tailed eagle in this area has yet again been met by a lack of enforcement effort by Tayside police. RSPB staff and others have again expressed concern following this long series of incidents. In light of recommendations in the 2008 Natural Justice report, which highlighted areas where more needs to be done to effectively tackle wildlife crime, the response has been particularly disappointing. The RSPB has written to the Chief Constable of Tayside police asking for clarification over the continued lack of action and seeking reassurances that future incidents will be taken more seriously. Unfortunately, the inconsistent approach to enforcement shown in this incident is far from unusual. The priority and support given to the raptor persecution wildlife crime priority has to date been insufficient. This inevitably results in inadequate responses by some police forces, even in response to serious offences. RSPB recommendation Increase support for the UK Wildlife Crime Priority to tackle raptor persecution and address inadequate law enforcement. David Tipling (rspb-images.com) Peregrines continue to be victims of pesticide abuse. Disgruntled pigeon fanciers are believed to be responsible for a proportion of these. There were further incidents in In Cumbria during April 2009, a tethered pigeon was discovered at a breeding site near Cockermouth. Subsequent analysis of a sample of feathers discovered that the pesticides aldicarb, carbofuran (both no longer approved) and bendiocarb were present. The adult birds had disappeared from the site, and were suspected to have been poisoned. A peregrine was previously poisoned at the same site in In Walsall in the West Midlands during February 2009, a stray racing pigeon, with a small capsule strapped to its leg, was picked up by a member of the public. The capsule was sent for analysis and found to contain the pesticide aldicarb. It is believed this was a deliberate attempt to poison any peregrine that might have predated the bird. It is believed this is part of a concerted campaign by some pigeon fanciers in the West Midlands. Geoff Horne Three attempts were made at this site to poison peregrine falcons in This pigeon was destined to be a peregrine s last meal a capsule of the banned pesticide aldicarb had been strapped to its leg. G Shorrock (RSPB) G Shorrock RSPB 20 21

13 Poisoned bait kills Northern Ireland kite Gamekeeper convicted Robert Straughan (RSPB) I Thomson RSPB One of Northern Ireland s recently introduced red kites was found poisoned near Newry. Kerr admitted shooting this buzzard, found in the back of his Land Rover, only half an hour earlier. December 2009 began with the discovery of the body of one of Northern Ireland s re-introduced kites, released only five months earlier. Robert Straughan made the discovery while radio tracking kite Y in the Newry area after this female had distanced herself from the main group of kites. Less then one year old, she was found lying next to a rabbit, which had been laced with the poison alphachloralose. Kites are scavengers by nature and a dead rabbit lying in an open field would have been too good to miss for a hungry kite. It is unknown whether whoever laid this poisoned meat bait intended to kill this red kite. The chances are the poison was intended for crows or foxes. Regardless of the target, laying poisoned meat baits in Northern Ireland is illegal. Red kites, like all birds of prey, are protected by law in NI and penalties for killing them can reach a 5,000 fine. The RSPB is working with the Police Service of Northern Ireland, partner organisations and political representatives to ensure that illegal killing is stopped. However, until this is achieved, Northern Ireland s kites continue to be at risk. The people of Northern Ireland clearly expressed their views through the RSPB s bird of prey campaign (see page 15). Many of the kites re-introduced into Northern Ireland have been adopted by schools, whose pupils receive regular updates on their kite s progress. The project is still in its early stages, two years after first releases. Small populations such as this are particularly vulnerable to any increase in mortality, which can have a significant impact on the population. While Northern Ireland s kite population continues to expand, illegal poisons in the countryside continue to pose a risk of others befalling the same fate as Y. Mr Graham Kerr, formerly a gamekeeper at Redmyre, Longforgan, Perthshire, was sentenced at Perth Sheriff Court on 24 March 2010 after pleading guilty to shooting a buzzard at Redmyre on 9 September 2009, and of possession of carbofuran and alphachloralose. He was fined 400 for killing the buzzard and admonished for possession of the illegal poisons. This court case was the result of a successful operation co-ordinated by Tayside police, in partnership with the Scottish Government and RSPB Scotland, following the finding of a poisoned buzzard and a pheasant carcass laced with carbofuran and alphachloralose. An RSPB Scotland spokesperson said, We welcome the successful conviction of this individual who has been involved in the killing of a protected bird of prey. We will continue to work with other PAWS partners to stamp out these crimes which have no place in Scotland in the 21st century. The two agricultural pesticides, recovered from a tub in Mr Kerr s vehicle, both feature regularly in incidents of illegal poisoning of protected wildlife. Indeed, figures released earlier this month by the Scottish Government indicated that 2009 was one of the worst years on record for known incidents of this sort of crime. Earlier in August, RSPB Scotland lodged a petition with the Scottish Parliament drawing attention to the problem of the illegal killing of birds of prey and calling for an end to such activity. (See page 15.) 22 23

14 Poisoner let off lightly On 25 October 2009, a freshly dead buzzard was discovered next to a predated pheasant carcass by young children out walking with their family on a public footpath on the Sufton Estate near Hereford. On returning home, the family immediately informed the RSPB. On visiting the site, five dead ravens, and two more pheasant baits were found although the original dead buzzard and bait were missing. Later enquiries indicated that the RSPCA had also been independently contacted about the buzzard and an Inspector had recovered it together with the pheasant bait. Faced with the strong likelihood that individuals on the estate were placing poison baits to kill birds of prey, RSPB staff undertook a surveillance operation over the next four weeks. During the surveillance period evidence indicated that additional baits had been placed. These were immediately removed by RSPB officers but further dead ravens and buzzards were also found indicating that poisoning was more widespread on the estate than initially thought. Once suitable evidence identifying the suspect was obtained, the RSPB contacted PC Bryan Wood, a Wildlife Crime Officer at West Mercia Police. On 25 Novermber 2009 a Wildlife and Countryside Act search warrant was executed on the estate by West Mercia Police, assisted by the RSPB and Natural England. Gamekeeper Ben Walker (26), of Lower Farm, Westhide, Hereford, was intercepted on his morning rounds of the estate and when faced with the surveillance evidence freely admitted placing baits to kill birds of prey. Walker indicated that he was the only person involved and that the head gamekeeper was unaware of his actions. Walker took officers to a location on the estate where he produced a poison cache from within a grain sack hidden under a hedge. This was found to comprise of several containers of the insecticide FICAM W (Bendiocarb) and a knife used to apply the insecticide to dead pheasants. On 21 April 2010, at Hereford Magistrates Court, Walker pleaded guilty to 17 offences under the Wildlife and Countryside Act. These included the poisoning of five ravens and two buzzards, laying nine poisoned baits and possession of bendiocarb to commit offences. He was fined 1,000. Walker told the court he was worried about losing his job if he could not keep pheasant numbers up and that he had been using poisoned baits for more than nine months. A massive amount of effort went in to this investigation involving multiple agencies and the RSPB wishes to thank West Mercia police, RSPCA, Natural England, CRD and FERA. Sadly, despite the seriousness of the offences, the light sentence again highlights the inconsistencies in wildlife sentencing. James Leonard (RSPB) RSPB Gamekeeper Ben Walker (centre) shows West Mercia police and RSPB staff the location of his illegal pesticide cache. This poisoned buzzard started a major enquiry that led to the conviction of gamekeeper Ben Walker for multiple poisoning offences. RSPB Many sporting estates receive significant sums of public money under the single farm payments scheme. However, this places an onus to comply with various environmental and wildlife legislation. Where bird of prey persecution is taking place on certain estates, it seems highly inappropriate, particularly in the current economic climate, that they should receive the full benefit of this public money. A mother took this photo with her child sitting next to a buzzard s last meal, not knowing it was laced with a deadly insecticide. RSPB recommendation Work with the European Union to strengthen the penalties available under cross compliance so that anyone contravening EU Wildlife Directives faces having their single farm payment withdrawn

15 Shooting and destruction of 2 birds of prey Confirmed bird of prey and owl SDBP and poisoning incidents 2009 Note: the number of mapped incidents is fewer than the number reported as not all incidents can be allocated a grid reference. Where more than one incident occurred in the same 10 km grid square, the relevant symbols have been moved slightly for clarity. In 2009, there were 268 reported incidents of illegal shooting, trapping and nest destruction of birds of prey (see Appendix I). This is higher than the 232 incidents reported in 2008, and above the last fiveyear average ( average of 200 incidents). Of the 268 reports, 46 were confirmed and 79 were probable. The most commonly reported crime was shooting, with 147 reports of incidents involving the shooting or attempted shooting of raptors and owls. Of these, 34 were confirmed and a further 33 were probable. There were 26 reported incidents relating to destruction of bird of prey nests, eggs or chicks and a further 95 reported incidents of other offences such as trapping. In 2008, the RSPB launched its Bird of Prey Campaign, to raise awareness of the unacceptably high levels of bird of prey persecution and to press for government action to tackle these crimes and reduce their causes. In February 2010 we handed in more than 210,000 signatures to the Houses of Parliament on behalf of all the people who signed the pledge saying the persecution of birds of prey must stop. Read more about this on page 15. Despite the number of confirmed offences during the last 20 years, only a small fraction are ever discovered. This makes recording and reporting of known offences particularly important. Unfortunately, statutory efforts to do this remain disjointed and inconsistent. Whilst crimes such as minor theft are recorded by the Home Office, serious conservation offences, such as poisoning a golden eagle, are not. RSPB recommendation Improve recording and reporting of wildlife crime and make the killing of birds of prey a recorded crime. Danny Green (rspb-images.com) 26 27

16 Another bad year for peregrines and red kites G Shorrock (RSPB) Graham Eaton (rspb-images.com) RSPB Investigations Officers found traps set on a ledge to kill peregrines In Birdcrime 2008 we reported on a series of persecution incidents targeted at peregrines. Tragically, this pattern appears to have continued in 2009, with a spate of incidents around the country. Red kites also continue to suffer and, in addition to poisoning cases, there were five confirmed shooting incidents. Here is a summary of some of the worst cases of shooting and nest destruction from March A male peregrine crashlanded in a garden near Lichfield, Staffordshire, with a metal spring trap on its leg. The bird later died from its injuries. RSPB investigations staff searched a number of nearby quarries and eventually located and removed three set springtraps placed on a cliff ledge being used by peregrines. Three traps had been lightly covered with soil in an attempt to disguise them. May At a breeding site near Cannock, Staffordshire, where a male peregrine was trapped in 2008, further evidence of illegal trapping was found and it is suspected one or more birds may have been killed at this site. June An injured juvenile red kite found in Northamptonshire later died and a post mortem confirmed it had been shot. A peregrine was shot dead at a nest site in a quarry near Coleford, in Gloucestershire. September Raptor Rescue recovered a grounded peregrine near Richmond, North Yorkshire. The bird had been shot and had to be euthanased due to its injuries. A peregrine was also reported shot on a grouse drive in the Forest of Bowland, Lancashire. The RSPB remains concerned about the lack of a proper police investigation into this matter. December The year ended badly for red kites with a further three confirmed as shot in England and Scotland. One of these involved a 2009 bird from the most recent English red kite release scheme near Gateshead, Northumberland. Unfortunately, the peregrine continues to suffer sustained persecution from several quarters. There remain problems with egg collectors and elements connected with pigeon fanciers and falconers. This species remains unpopular on some game shooting estates and has low breeding productivity on many moors managed for grouse shooting. The RSPB believes the peregrine must be added to the five species already forming the priority list (golden and whitetailed eagle, hen harrier, red kite, goshawk) for the UK Wildlife Crime Priority Raptor Persecution, if this continuing threat is to be addressed

17 3 Egg collecting and disturbance Case studies Photographer on Isle of Man fined for disturbance of hen harriers In 2009, there were 63 reported incidents of egg collecting and egg thefts, and two reports of eggs being sold ( average of 58 incidents). Despite an encouraging long term decrease in egg collecting activity, there is still work to do. There remain a number of persistent egg thieves operating in the UK and abroad who hold significant illegal collections of birds eggs, some of which will no doubt come to light in future enquiries. Of particular concern during 2009 were three major egg trading enquiries that came to light. These cases have been highly complex and have necessitated a significant input of time from the RSPB. One of these has been concluded (page 32) and it is hoped the two remaining cases will be brought to court in the near future. There were 10 confirmed and 23 probable nest robberies of Schedule 1 species reported in 2009 (see Appendix V). These include the taking of eggs and chicks for the live bird trade. Confirmed robberies included the nests of seven peregrines, one goshawk and one osprey. Probable robberies included the nests of 19 peregrines, two goshawks and one hobby. With the exception of the increase in peregrine robberies, many of which are likely to be connected with the live bird trade rather than egg collectors, these relatively low figures are a good sign. They illustrate that since the early 1990s the numbers of egg collecting incidents have significantly reduced. It is believed this is due in part to increased police effort, through national strategies such as Operation Easter, and regional initiatives such as Operation Compass in Norfolk. However, the RSPB believes the most significant factor has been the introduction of custodial sentences. These were introduced in England and Wales in early 2001 under the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000, and in Scotland in 2003 under the Criminal Justice (Scotland) Act In 2009, there were also 34 reported incidents of photography and disturbance of Schedule 1 species, four of which were confirmed. The four confirmed incidents included a white-tailed eagle disturbance and a case of hen harrier disturbance on the Isle of Man that resulted in a conviction (see page 31). There were two cases of peregrine falcon disturbance. Courtesy Manx Constabulary On 26 January 2010, John Andrew Cottier appeared at court in the Isle of Man charged with two offences of the reckless or intentional disturbance of hen harriers. Cottier pleaded guilty and was fined 500 with 150 costs. The offences came to light in July 2009 when a network of hides and paths was located, cut through gorse and heather moorland adjoining a conifer plantation in a remote hillside area of the island. One of the improvised paths led out into the moorland to a hen harrier nest containing four chicks. PCs Ian Scott and Mark Kerruish, assisted by RSPB Investigations Officer James Leonard, investigated and, under surveillance authority, installed a covert camera covering the hide closest to the nest. Recordings obtained showed the defendant visiting the hide daily for several hours at a time. While there is no doubt disturbance such as this is not a major factor driving hen harrier decline, the perilous state of the species means any avoidable problems such as this must be eliminated, particularly in areas such as the Isle of Man, where the harrier population is still relatively healthy. Photograph taken by Cottier of hen harrier chicks during an unlicensed nest visit

18 Suspended sentence for international egg trader G Shorrock (RSPB) S Spasov A griffon vulture egg was amongst those purchased by Seed. Eggs of red-shouldered hawks were smuggled from the USA by Seed On 6 May 2010, Peter Andrew Seed, of Low Willington, County Durham, was sentenced at Durham Crown Court following an earlier plea to 17 offences. These included four offences relating to the smuggling of CITES-listed birds eggs from the USA and Australia contrary to the Customs and Excise Management Act, 11 charges of trading in birds eggs contrary to the Control of Trade in Endangered Species (Enforcement) Regulations and two charges contrary to the relating to the possession of 223 birds eggs and collecting equipment. He also asked for a further 22 offences to be taken into consideration. He received a nine-month sentence, suspended for two years, plus a confiscation order with costs totalling 3, In 2008, a local authority reported that Seed, one of their employees, had extensive correspondence on his computer relating to birds eggs. In February 2009, the Durham Constabulary executed a warrant at Seed s address and seized more than 2,000 eggs, along with a quantity of datacards, correspondence and packaging. Whilst it appeared Seed s main interest was in trading eggs, his datacards also indicated he had done a little collecting himself. This included osprey eggs taken from a site in Scotland in 2000, something he later denied. Seed had smuggled CITES-listed eggs to and from the USA, and packaging showed that eggs received had false declarations of contents suggesting they were Christmas ornaments or knitwear. The CITES-listed species supplied included raptors, owls and egrets. There were also Australian CITES-listed parrot eggs, which Seed had purchased from local contacts who were believed to have smuggled them into the UK. The information most important to the enquiry was nearly 6,000 s relating to birds eggs, going back to 2004, sent and received by Seed whilst with his former employer. It was his failure to delete these that led to his downfall. The detailed examination of these by the RSPB was a lengthy process but eventually revealed much of his trading activities and those of other individuals in the UK and abroad. Intelligence packages prepared by the RSPB were disseminated by the NWCU and enquiries into other individuals are ongoing. Trading in eggs has generally been considered rare and it may be that the increasing use of electronic communications and the Internet have opened up new trading opportunities for these types of offences. Eggs of great egrets were smuggled from the USA. Julian Hough 32 33

19 4 Trade in wild birds and taxidermy Case studies DNA profiling back in the spotlight In 2009, there were 175 reported incidents involving the taking, sale and possession of live and dead birds ( average of 94 incidents). As with previous years, the majority of 2009 incidents were cases of taking, selling and possessing live nonbirds of prey (mostly finches) accounting for 99 incidents. There were 65 incidents involving birds of prey and 11 incidents of illegal taxidermy. The RSPCA and SSPCA continue to be the lead agencies investigating the taking and trading in cage birds such as finches. An intention to review the controls in England on the keeping and trade in such birds has recently been announced. It is clear that current controls are failing to prevent criminality, and hopefully the temptation to deregulate the legislation, as has been done with Schedule 4 controls, will be resisted. DNA profiling confirmed this goshawk had changed its identity. M Findlow, Cheshire police More than a decade has passed since DNA profiling was last used in a raptor laundering prosecution. On 6 August 2009, John Keith Simcox of Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, and his son John Kevin Simcox of Great Sutton, Cheshire, appeared at Chester Magistrates Court. Simcox Snr pleaded guilty to possessing a wild goshawk and making false representations to register the bird and to obtain an Article 10 certificate. He was sentenced on 9 September 2009 to eight weeks in prison. His son pleaded guilty to possessing a goshawk and was given a two-year conditional discharge plus 65 costs. In 1987, Simcox Snr took possession of a pair of goshawks that had been imported from Hungary. The birds were properly ringed and registered, and he used them as a breeding pair, selling the offspring to other keepers. Significantly, both birds had been fitted with microchips. In 2007, Simcox Snr contacted Animal Health and informed them that a cable-tie had fallen off the female parent goshawk. A new Swiss ring was fitted: however, there was no reading from the microchip. Simcox suggested it must have failed and a vet fitted a new microchip to the bird. Suspicion was then raised about the provenance of the breeding female, believed to be around 23 years old. In November 2008, Cheshire police, supported by NWCU, Animal Health Wildlife Inspectors and the RSPCA, visited Simcox and his son and obtained a blood sample from the female goshawk. At the same time, blood was taken from an alleged offspring sold in 2002 to a keeper in the Midlands for 500. DNA profiling undertaken by Wildlife DNA Services indicated that Simcox s female parent bird could not be the parent of the 2002 offspring. As failure of the original microchip was extremely unlikely, the circumstances suggested that the identity of the female parent had changed rather than the usual scenario of declaring a wild taken bird as a legitimate offspring. The declared female parent was seized and an x-ray showed only one microchip, when there should have been two the original one which had stopped working, plus the new one fitted following the visit of Animal Health. The evidence clearly indicated that the ageing female goshawk had died and had been replaced with a younger wild taken bird some time in 2007 or 2008 and that Simcox Snr had misled the authorities trying to register the new goshawk. In sentencing District Judge Nick Sanders said, What you did was a deliberate attempt to deceive the authorities that the bird you had ringed and chipped was the same bird. Following the government s failure to support the legislation, the goshawk remains one of only nine species left on Schedule 4 and required to be registered if kept in captivity. This case demonstrates how important the records held under registration scheme are if DNA profiling is to be effectively used. Similar enquiries into non-registered species, or peregrines and merlins (where registration requirements have been relaxed) are likely to be far more difficult or impossible

20 5 Prosecutions in 2009 Case studies Gamekeeper set spring trap in the open The RSPB maintains a record of prosecutions involving offences against wild birds. In 2009, the RSPB was involved with, or informed of, the prosecutions of 35 individuals, including prosecutions taken by the Crown Prosecution Service, Procurator Fiscal and the RSPCA. The 35 prosecutions involved at least 120 charges. The majority were charges under the Wildlife and Countryside Act. Of these, 85 charges resulted in a guilty outcome (71%). Fines for the year totalled 6,895 and seven people were awarded custodial sentences (three of which were suspended sentences). Birdcrime 2008 looked at the profile of persons convicted of bird of prey persecution related offences between 1996 and This work has been extended to look back over the last 20 years to comprised 95 gamekeepers (nearly all full-time), two game shooters and one game dealer. Other major groups included taxidermists (8%), farming interests (6%) and pigeon fanciers (5%). Encouragingly, the proportion of cases involving taxidermists appears to have dramatically reduced in the last 10 years. The profile of those convicted continues to highlight the conflict between management practices on certain sporting estates and bird of prey conservation. The proportion of confirmed incidents of bird of prey persecution and prosecutions varies across the UK. Whilst England has a lower overall percentage of confirmed persecution incidents than Scotland, the number of successful prosecutions is significantly higher. Occupations and interests of 141 persons convicted of offences related to bird of prey persecution (1990 to 2009) Game bird interests Unknown/other Taxidermists Farming interests Pigeon Fanciers Bird keeper Pest controller Courtesy of SSPCA On 12 January 2009 at Dumfries Sheriffs Court, part-time gamekeeper Jonathon Charles Galbraith of High Road, Hightae, Lockerbie, pleaded guilty to two charges under the Wildlife and Countryside Act relating to the illegal use of a spring-trap against wild birds and animals listed on Schedule 6 of the Act. He was fined 1,400. On 21 August, the SSPCA had an anonymous call about an injured bird in a trap near Kirkhill Farm, Dalton, Dumfries and Galloway. Galbraith, with 40 years experience in gamekeeping, was solely responsible for the management of a pheasant shoot there. The following day SSPCA Inspectors visited the area to look for the injured bird. In a wood on Kirkhill Farm they found an active pheasant pen and, close by, an unset Springer 4 spring-trap next to a dead pheasant poult. The spring-trap had a fox snare attached to it. The inspectors searched the area, and observed Galbraith resetting the spring-trap and placing it on top of the dead pheasant poult. The setting of spring-traps in the open is illegal and these devices should be covered to exclude any non-target animal. The SSPCA Inspectors approached Galbraith, identified themselves, and interviewed him about the trap. Galbraith accepted setting it claiming something was killing his pheasants. This incident is typical in that it occurred on land managed for gamebird shooting. There is currently no licensing system in place for shooting estates in the UK, making it difficult to target illegal practices effectively. RSPB recommendation Modernise the regulation of game shooting. This could include removing the rights to shoot of an individual convicted of bird of prey persecution or other environmental crimes, or removing the right for shooting to take place over an estate if an employee is convicted, for a fixed period. These options would provide a significant deterrent without imposing a burden on the lawabiding majority. Of 141 convictions recorded by the RSPB, 98 individuals (70%) had game bird interests. These Percentage of confirmed bird of prey persecution incidents Percentage of convictions related to bird of prey persecution Scotland England Wales Northern Ireland 2 1 Galbraith illegally set this spring-trap out in the open

21 Case studies Gamekeeper let off lightly for pesticide abuse G Shorrock (RSPB) G Shorrock (RSPB) Red-legged partridge baits laced with alphachloralose were laid out. Partridge rearing pens where the two baits were laid out. A conviction for the illegal use of pesticides continues to highlight the inconsistencies in sentencing for these crimes compared with other wildlife cases. In June 2009, experienced gamekeeper Mark Partridge of Llwydiarth, Tylwch, Powys, pleaded guilty at Welshpool Magistrates Court to unlawful storage of rodenticides and alphachloralose, and unlawful use of the latter contrary to the Food and Environment Protection Act He was fined 100 with 100 costs. He was later acquitted of three charges under the Wildlife and Countryside Act relating to the preparation of poisoned baits to kill birds of prey. In September 2008, during an investigation into a poisoned buzzard, the police, assisted by the Welsh Assembly Government (WAG) and RSPB staff, undertook a search at Partridge s home. Partridge was caught red-handed in possession of a container of unapproved alphachloralose and two dead partridges. When informed that a search would be carried out, Partridge asked to put some items away and set off towards his house. When challenged about a small container he was carrying under his arm, he claimed it was Emtryl, a banned veterinary product for gamebirds. When challenged again, he ignored requests to stop and was intercepted on his doorstep. The container was found to contain an unapproved pesticide containing pure alphachloralose. Two partridge baits laced with alphachloralose had only just been prepared and were found laid out on the roofs of two partridge rearing pens. An experienced pathologist believed the two dead birds carried by Partridge had been killed by having their necks stretched, and it was suspected these were intended as further poisoned baits. Partridge accepted preparing two illegal baits, but denied trying to kill raptors, claiming he intended to put the baits inside the pens to kill rats, but had been interrupted by the arrival of the police search team. He refused to reveal where he had got the alphachloralose from, but realized it was dodgy and said it was purchased for rat control. Despite evidence of raptor persecution and alphaschloralose being provided during the trial, the court accepted this account. It is disappointing that the illegal use of indiscriminate poisons such as alphachloralose continues to attract such a small fine, with minimal deterrent value. Tighter controls on the possession of certain pesticides (see pg 47) are required if progress is to be made in the fight against illegal poisoning. The profile of convictions on page 36 graphically illustrates that the majority of those convicted of crimes relating to bird of prey persecution are gamekeepers. However, the RSPB believes it is primarily their managers and employers who are the underlying cause of the problem, and should be made more accountable. RSPB recommendation Introduction of a vicarious liability offence to make managers and employers responsible for the actions of their gamekeepers

22 6 Review of 2009 National Wildlife Crime Unit NWCU In 2009, the strategic high level meeting expanded the hen harrier priority to encompass five key species of raptors (golden eagle, goshawk, hen harrier, red kite and white-tailed eagle) as these were the species which showed the most cause for concern. It was agreed that the priority would look at all forms of persecution, including poisoning, egg and chick theft, nest destruction/disturbance and illegal taking from the wild. Since raptor persecution was adopted as one of the UK s top wildlife crime priorities, the NWCU has continued to work with its key partner agencies, seeking ways to prevent wild bird crime, whilst also gathering intelligence and undertaking enforcement on those who continue to commit these offences. The NWCU works closely with the RSPB and a host of other partner agencies through the raptor persecution priority delivery groups. The main objective for these two priority delivery groups is to: raise community trust and awareness to facilitate intelligence and incident reporting, leading to increased prevention and enforcement activity relating to Raptor Persecution. The groups are tackling this through a range of prevention, intelligence and enforcement actions. They might: 1. Draw up an agreed strategy for prevention under which all agencies can work together to achieve the overall objective of the group 2. Utilise PAW Publicity Group for all media engagement 3. Produce maps to highlight the key areas where raptor persecution occurs 4. Develop a secondment opportunity for a police officer to work within Scottish Natural Heritage 5. Build on existing evidence gathering protocols from all partner agencies and bring them all together 6. Prepare an awareness-raising campaign highlighting dangers of pesticides on open ground 7. Encourage the submission of incident returns and intelligence to the NWCU. The last year has seen the NWCU continue to build on a good working relationship with the RSPB and combined enforcement efforts have resulted in a number of offenders being put before the courts. This includes such high profile cases as: 1) May 2009 an operation in South Wales which supported the enquiry into a major European investigation into allegations of laundering wild taken birds of prey 2) June 2009 a cross border operation which resulted in the seizure of 14,000 birds eggs in Scotland 3) August 2009 NWCU and RSPB worked with Staffordshire Police to investigate the prohibited sale of two barn owls. Derek Shaylor pleaded guilty and was fined 600, and forfeited a female barn owl he still had in his possession. As outlined here, the National Wildlife Crime Unit plays a vital role in the fight against wildlife crime. It is therefore a major concern that funding is not guaranteed beyond March Securing long-term funding is vital if the NWCU s co-ordination and operational capabilities are to be protected and enhanced. RSPB recommendation Secure long-term funding for the National Wildlife Crime Unit (NWCU). The then Wildlife Minister Huw Irranca-Davies visits Lincolnshire Police (left to right Andy McWilliam (NWCU), Huw Irranca-Davies, Alan Campbell, Alan Roberts and Brian Stuart (NWCU). S.Spasov An ongoing operation which started in South Wales during 2009 is looking into allegations of laundering of European raptor species such as the lesser kestrel

23 Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime (PAW) Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime (PAW) The Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime (PAW) enables statutory and nonstatutory bodies to work together to combat wildlife crime. PAW is co-chaired by Defra and the police. Good progress has been made in raising political awareness of wildlife crime including the work of PAW and the National Wildlife Crime Unit (NWCU). Former Defra Biodiversity Minister Huw Irranca-Davies addressed the PAW Seminar at Kew in 2009, thanking everyone for their work and announcing wildlife crime priorities for 2009/10. He met the Home Office Minister for Crime Reduction, Alan Campbell, to discuss the best way to jointly support wildlife law enforcement. Mr Campbell visited the NWCU to see its work for himself and Mr Irranca-Davies visited Lincolnshire Police, where he received a briefing from police officers and NWCU staff and took part in the launch of Operation Gallileo (aimed at tackling hare-coursing). The Ministers collaborated over a letter and leaflet for MPs outlining the work of the NWCU, complimenting them on their passion and commitment and emphasising the important role played in supporting the enforcement agencies in tackling wildlife crime. PAW Co-Chair Richard Brunstrom, Chief Constable of North Wales, retired after eight years with PAW. He made a major contribution to raising awareness of and strengthening the enforcement of wildlife legislation and played a key role in setting up the NWCU. Richard Crompton, Chief Constable of Lincolnshire Police, now cochairs PAW with Francis Marlow, Deputy Director, Wildlife and Countryside Directorate, Defra. With the NWCU established and crystallising its role, PAW Scotland settling in and the PAW Northern Ireland and PAW Cymru groups setting their priorities, it became clear that a review of PAW UK was needed to ensure that it continued to make an effective and focused contribution to wildlife law enforcement. A new mission statement for PAW UK has been agreed: Working in partnership to reduce wildlife crime through effective and targeted enforcement, better regulation and improved awareness. New objectives have also been agreed for PAW UK: i) enforcement PAW UK will facilitate effective enforcement to ensure that wildlife crime is tackled professionally; ii) legislation and regulation PAW UK will influence the improvement of wildlife enforcement legislation; iii) raising awareness PAW UK will raise awareness of wildlife legislation and the implications of wildlife crime. All PAW partners must demonstrate that they are taking action to further one or more of these objectives. Details of how this information can be collected and assessed, and how delivery against these objectives can be measured, are being drawn up. New criteria for organisations wishing to join PAW UK will also be drawn up. Prospective partners will be asked to specify what they will be doing to further the objectives of PAW. As chair of the Coalition Against Wildlife Trafficking (CAWT), the UK Government hosted a side event at the 15th Conference of the Parties to CITES. Representatives of all partners and potential recruits to the organisation attended and were greeted by an introduction from the former Minister, Huw Irranca- Davies, followed by an address from Richard Crompton and from the Executive Director of TRAFFIC, Steve Broad. G Shorrock (RSPB) Guy Clarke receives the Wildlife Enforcer of the Year award from Heather Sohl, WWF. Richard Crompton (centre) chats to Nick Crampton (CPS) on the PAW Wildlife Stand. PAW plays a pivotal role in the fight against wildlife crime. However, there are steps that can be taken to further improve its effectiveness and profile. For example, by playing a leading role in developing novel enforcement techniques and ensuring the partnership communicates its excellent work to the widest possible audience. RSPB recommendation Increase effectiveness and profile of the Partnership for Action Against Wildlife Crime (PAW)

24 Legal issues Schedule 4 bird registration General licences Mark Hamblin (rspb-images.com) G Shorrock (RSPB) Starlings are one of the species proposed for removal from Welsh general licences due to its poor conservation status. Despite advice from the Police, conservation organisations, the PAW Forensic Working Group and JNCC, the Government s own scientific advisers, the failure to maintain and expand Schedule 4 is very disappointing. Following highly controversial changes to Schedule 4 bird registration in England, which came into force on 1 October 2008, similar amendments have been made in Wales and Scotland. In Wales, on 23 April and 27 July 2009, Statutory Instruments 2009 No 780 and No 1733 came into force. On 21 December 2009, Scotland issued Statutory Instrument 2009 No 419. These changes mean there are only nine registerable species on Schedule 4 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act, with no requirement to register hybrids. The remaining species are golden and white-tailed eagles, marsh and Montagu s harriers, honey buzzard, goshawk, osprey, peregrine and merlin. For peregrine and merlin, these species are considered registered if they hold a valid Article 10 Certificate. Unfortunately, under this system once these species have been sold, the authorities may have little chance of tracing them if they become the subject of an investigation. The RSPB is aware of problems already and has asked Animal Health to record cases where effective enforcement has been impaired by the lack of full registration. Additionally, it is necessary to consider what other species would benefit from registration controls. This will be of value if there are future opportunities to review possession controls. Against this background, the recent increased interference at peregrine breeding sites reported on page 13 is of particular concern. It was an eventful year in 2009 for those with an interest in general licences, as both Natural England and the Welsh Assembly reviewed the licences in their respective countries. General licences, issued under the, permit authorised persons to kill certain species of bird for specific purposes (eg to prevent serious damage or disease) without the need to apply for a licence. The RSPB welcomed proposals, in both countries, to remove species of conservation concern from the licences. Natural England has removed herring gull from certain licences, as this is a priority species in the UK Biodiversity Action Plan owing to a population decline of more than 50% in the last 25 years. The great black-backed gull has been removed from all general licences in England with the exception of the air safety licence. We await the outcome of the consultation in Wales, but that too included positive proposals to remove house sparrow, starling, herring gull, lesser blackbacked gull and great blackbacked gull from the licences, owing to their conservation status. Natural England has also followed the welcome precedent set by the Scottish Government and introduced a condition that prohibits the use of general licences by persons convicted of a wildlife crime. For more information, go to the relevant statutory agency s website

25 NGO surveillance under the spotlight Possession of pesticides In November 2009, a trial took place in Dorset involving a hunt employee charged with interfering with a badger sett. The evidence included covert surveillance footage from the League Against Cruel Sports (LACS). Following a defence submission, a District Judge expressed an opinion that this evidence should have been subject to an authorisation under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA). The Country Land and Business Association subsequently wrote to Chief Constables expressing concern that if the police and CPS used evidence gathered by NGOs, through directed surveillance not authorised under RIPA, both the police and the CPS may be liable under the Human Rights Act. The Policy Directorate of the CPS subsequently issued guidance (www.cps.gov.uk/legal/h_to_k/hun ting_act/index.html#a666). In summary this states that no authorisation under RIPA or the Police Act needs to be sought where an NGO conducts surveillance for its own purposes and then passes surveillance footage to the police. Where the police task the NGO to conduct directed surveillance and intend making use of any evidence gathered, it would be appropriate to seek an authorisation. No G Shorrock RSPB authorisation would be required where the police neither initiate nor encourage the surveillance even though they may be aware of it. Where the court determines that surveillance should have been the subject of an authorisation, it does not mean that the evidence will be automatically excluded; it will be a factor for the court to consider when exercising its discretion under Section 78 of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act. The RSPB first used covert surveillance evidence in a pole-trapping case in Since then, of the 95 full and part-time gamekeepers convicted of offences relating to bird of prey persecution, some 25 (18 in England, five in Scotland, two in Wales) have been as a result of surveillance evidence. All but one was from evidence gathered by the RSPB. These offences are often extremely difficult to investigate and the RSPB believes that this type of evidence has an important role to play, provided it is gathered in a reasonable and proportionate manner. The RSPB welcomes the guidance from the CPS. RSPB surveillance caught Ben Walker checking one of his many poison baits on the Sufton Estate, near Hereford (see pages 24 and 25). As this report graphically illustrates, the illegal poisoning of wildlife remains a major problem in the UK. In an effort to combat this, in 2006 Defra enacted controls on possessions of pesticides, under Section 43 of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act, which would make it an offence to be in possession of one of a list of poisons that have no legitimate use. However, four years later, the list of proscribed substances has still not been populated, and so this potentially useful tool in the fight against illegal poisoning remains dormant in England and Wales. In contrast, the Scottish Government enacted such controls in the Nature J Leonard (RSPB) Conservation (Scotland) Act 2004 and it is now considered a vital piece of legislation, with several resulting convictions. Those who carry out poisoning have shown themselves very adaptable in terms of poisons used. Most of the products with a long-term history of abuse were originally approved products. Although the approval of several of these has now been withdrawn (because of wider health concerns rather than abuse in wildlife cases), many have not. With Section 43 enacted, it would provide the mechanism for being able to rapidly add ingredients to the list once a legal pesticide becomes Controls on the possession of pesticides are an important tool in the fight against illegal poisoning in Scotland, yet are not currently available elsewhere in the UK. Creating a list of proscribed ingredients under Section 43 of the NERC Act 2006, is a straightforward and vital step in the right direction. RSPB recommendation Update legislative provisions in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, including controls on possession of pesticides. This poison cache was recovered during the investigation into wildlife poisoning on the Sufton Estate in Herefordshire in 2009 (see pages 24 25). popular with the criminal fraternity and starts being regularly used to poison wildlife. Several substances commonly used in wildlife crime have not had approval withdrawn. In 2008 there were 22 confirmed poison abuse incidents in the UK, involving 26 victims, using substances that are on the Scottish list of proscribed substances, but have not yet had their approval withdrawn. Possession of pesticides controls are also currently lacking in Northern Ireland. Enacting such controls could help fight Northern Ireland s ongoing problem with illegal poisoning

26 RSPB International update Consistent failure to prevent illegal persecution According to the Federation of Associations for Hunting and Conservation in the EU there are 15,000 hunters in Malta this amounts to a staggering 40 hunters per square kilometre of territory. The world s third smallest country has the highest density of hunters in the EU: a blackspot for bird persecution. Malta is the only EU member state where a flock of 12 black storks were reduced to four within a day in 2008, where lesser spotted eagles were shot down within hours of their arrival over the past two years, and where maimed protected birds with festering wounds are commonly discovered in the countryside. Over the course of two days last September, BirdLife Malta and CABS teams uncovered a graveyard of more than 200 dead protected birds in a woodland used by large numbers of hunters and which Malta s hunting federation, the FKNK, claims to manage. Harriers, buzzards, herons, even hoopoes and a nightingale, were discovered hidden under rubble or vegetation. Some of the birds had been recently shot, others killed over the previous days or seasons. The search was carried out in the presence of police officers and all remains were handed over to the authorities. To date, not a single person has been charged and no details of the investigation have been forthcoming if one has indeed been held. Controlling hunting and trapping illegalities is the Administrative Law Enforcement (ALE) Unit s remit. With 24 officers and only a handful of vehicles, the ALE is supposed to prevent the twice yearly persecution of protected migratory birds. The ALE is not a dedicated unit and must assign its limited resources to other duties apart from hunting. When the ALE manages to investigate and prosecute offenders, many get off with nothing more than a slap on the wrist. BirdLife Malta analysed 388 court cases between 2006 and 2008, finding that the majority of offenders were given fines below the legal minimum. Licences were suspended in only 14 cases despite there being over 100 cases in which such a suspension should have been ordered. It is not only first time offenders who get off lightly. The law requires repeat offenders licences to be cancelled, but this was not done in any of the cases analysed. To aid the ALE in their duties, BirdLife Malta runs regular surveillance and investigations of illegal hunting and trapping, also running an international conservation camp during every spring and autumn peak migration period. Through this support, offenders are identified and evidence gathered which helps the ALE prosecute offenders. However, on numerous occasions, BirdLife Malta fieldworkers did not have the necessary support from the ALE. Last March, the ALE failed to respond to more than 60% of reports placed by BirdLife Malta surveillance teams, and only apprehended offenders on 5% of reports placed. After evaluating the resources available to local enforcement authorities and consulting with This marsh harrier, a protected species, was photographed in flight with shotgun damage to the tail on 25 April at Gharghur. Neil Wright/BirdLife Malta local and international experts on wildlife crime, lawyers, police and army staff, BirdLife Malta presented the Office of the Prime Minister with recommendations on how to improve the effectiveness of law enforcement. The proposals were submitted in 2008 but no answer was ever received. Since no serious effort was made by the authorities to improve enforcement, BirdLife Malta submitted the proposals again last year. To date, no response has been received. The Maltese government this year opened a six-day spring hunting season. One of the conditions member states are obliged to meet to derogate from the Birds Directive is strict supervision and enforcement. The government s track record to date shows very little commitment to cutting down on illegalities. Until the government takes wildlife crime seriously, the targeting of protected migratory birds in Malta will continue. BirdLife Malta will persist with its efforts for the implementation of effective law enforcement in the country, by documenting and exposing illegalities, advocating for investment in law enforcement and demanding the full implementation of the Birds Directive. Geoffrey Saliba, BirdLife Malta Campaigns Co-ordinator Neil Wright/BirdLife Malta This kestrel, seen on 12 April, is one of more than 45 protected birds recorded by BirdLife Malta this spring in flight with gunshot injuries. This honey-buzzard is one of over 200 dead protected birds, mainly raptors, found last September in the Mizieb woodland by BirdLife Malta Raptor Camp and CABS teams. Rob Cardell/BirdLife Malta 48 49

27 Appendix I Incidents reported to the RSPB Appendix II Regional breakdown of incidents reported in 2009 The table below shows the number of incidents reported to the RSPB for each year for the categories specified. In 2009 the RSPB ceased recording certain categories of incidents, such as the shooting and destruction of non bird of prey species. The figures supplied do not therefore give a total figure for wild bird crime in the UK and are not comparable with figures provided for years previous to Incident type Shooting & destruction of birds of prey Theft, sale & possession of birds of prey Poisoning and use of poisoned baits Import and export of live or dead birds Theft, sale & possession of non bird of prey species Taxidermy & possession of dead wild birds Egg collecting and egg thefts Sale of eggs Photography and disturbance Total UK breakdown for above incident types in 2009: England 442 Scotland 172 Wales 43 Northern Ireland 20 UK unspecified 24 Total no. UK incidents recorded by RSPB in 2009: 701 Note: Reported incident totals for previous years may have changed due to a number of belated reports or additional information received after the publishing date for Birdcrime of that year. Region County Birds of prey or owls Other * Total Eastern England Bedfordshire Cambridgeshire Essex Hertfordshire Lincolnshire Norfolk Suffolk Total Central England Derbyshire Herefordshire Leicestershire Northamptonshire Nottingham City Nottinghamshire Oxfordshire Shropshire Staffordshire Stoke-on-Trent City Telford and Wrekin Warwickshire West Midlands Worcestershire Total Northern England Cheshire County Durham Cumbria East Riding of Yorkshire Greater Manchester Isle of Man Lancashire Merseyside North Yorkshire Northumberland Redcar and Cleveland South Yorkshire Tyne and Wear West Yorkshire York City Total

28 Appendix II Regional breakdown of incidents reported in 2009 Region County Birds of prey or owls Other * Total South East England Brighton and Hove East Sussex Greater London Hampshire Isle of Wight Kent Surrey West Berkshire West Sussex Total South West England Bath and North East Somerset Bristol City Cornwall Devon Dorset Gloucestershire Somerset South Gloucestershire Wiltshire Total Northern Ireland Antrim Armagh Belfast County Borough Down Fermanagh Londonderry Tyrone Total East Scotland Aberdeen City Aberdeenshire Angus Fife Moray Perth and Kinross Total Region County Birds of prey or owls Other* Total North Scotland Highland South & West Scotland Argyll and Bute Clackmannanshire Dumfries and Galloway East Ayrshire East Lothian Edinburgh City Falkirk Glasgow City North Lanarkshire Scottish Borders South Ayrshire South Lanarkshire Stirling West Dunbartonshire West Lothian Total Wales Blaenau Gwent Bridgend Caerphilly Carmarthenshire Ceredigion Conwy Gwynedd Isle of Anglesey Newport Powys Rhondda Cynon Taff Wrexham Total Note: Incidents where the location was only given as England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales or United Kingdom were not included. *In 2009, the RSPB ceased recording certain categories of incidents, such as the shooting and destruction of non bird of prey species. The figures supplied for each region in the other column do not therefore give a total figure for non bird of prey incidents and are not comparable with figures provided for years previous to

29 Appendix III Confirmed and probable bird of prey and owl persecution during 2009 Persecution Type Month Species Confirmed Probable County SHOOTING January Barn owl 1 0 Bedfordshire Birds of prey 0 1 Bedfordshire Buzzard 1 0 Cumbria Buzzard 0 1 Hertfordshire Buzzard 1 0 West Lothian Kestrel 1 0 Lincolnshire February Buzzard 0 1 Northumberland Buzzard 0 1 Northumberland Buzzard 1 0 West Yorkshire Buzzard 1 0 North Yorkshire Buzzard 1 0 North Yorkshire Kestrel 0 2 East Sussex March Buzzard 1 0 North Yorkshire Buzzard 1 0 Cumbria Buzzard 0 1 North Lanarkshire Buzzard 1 0 North Yorkshire Tawny owl 1 0 Hertfordshire April Birds of prey 0? North Yorkshire Buzzard 1 0 East Riding of Yorkshire Buzzard 1 0 Lancashire Long-eared owl 0? South Yorkshire Peregrine falcon 0? Derbyshire Peregrine falcon 0? Dumfries and Galloway Peregrine falcon 0? Derbyshire Red kite 1 0 North Yorkshire May Kestrel 1 0 North Yorkshire Red kite 0 1 West Yorkshire June Buzzard 1 0 Aberdeenshire Peregrine falcon 1 0 Gloucestershire Red kite 1 0 Northamptonshire Tawny owl 0? Lincolnshire July Sparrowhawk 0 1 South Yorkshire August Buzzard 1 0 Norfolk Buzzard 1 0 Cumbria Hobby 0 1 Somerset Red kite 1 0 Northumberland Tawny owl 0 1 North Yorkshire September Buzzard 1 0 Perth and Kinross Buzzard 1 0 Northumberland Buzzard 1 0 Herefordshire Hobby 1 0 Greater London 54 Persecution Type Month Species Confirmed Probable County Peregrine falcon 1 0 North Yorkshire Peregrine falcon 0 1 Lancashire Peregrine falcon 0 1 North Yorkshire October Barn owl 1 0 Cornwall Buzzard 0 1 North Yorkshire Buzzard 1 0 Leicestershire White-tailed eagle 0 1 Belfast County Borough November Barn owl 0 1 West Sussex Buzzard 0? Shropshire Buzzard 0 1 Nottinghamshire December Buzzard 1 0 Norfolk Kestrel 0 1 Northamptonshire Red kite 1 0 Angus Red kite 1 0 Northamptonshire Unspecified Birds of prey 0? Derbyshire Birds of prey 0? North Yorkshire Birds of prey 0? Norfolk Goshawk 0 2 Derbyshire Little owl 1 0 Norfolk Montagu's harrier 0 1 Norfolk Peregrine falcon 0 2 Derbyshire Sparrowhawk 0 1 North Yorkshire Total DELIBERATE April Barn owl 0? Bedfordshire NEST DESTRUCTION May Goshawk 0 1 Gwynedd Goshawk 0 1 North Yorkshire Peregrine falcon 0? North Lanarkshire Peregrine falcon 1 0 Staffordshire June Golden eagle 0? Falkirk Goshawk 0 1 North Yorkshire Goshawk 0 1 North Yorkshire Hen harrier 1 0 Aberdeenshire Hen harrier 0? East Ayrshire July Hen harrier 0? East Ayrshire Total 2 4 ILLEGAL SPRING Feb Red kite 0 1 Perth and Kinross TRAPPING March Peregrine falcon 1 0 Staffordshire April Buzzard 1 0 Aberdeenshire Birds of prey? 0 North Yorkshire 55

30 Appendix III Confirmed and probable bird of prey and owl persecution during 2009 Appendix IV Confirmed poison abuse incidents during 2009 Persecution Type Month Species Confirmed Probable County Peregrine falcon? 0 Staffordshire May Peregrine falcon 0 1 Staffordshire Sept Birds of prey? 0 West Dunbartonshire Unspecified Little owl 1 0 Norfolk Total 3 2 POLE TRAPPING Sept Birds of prey 0? Highland Unspecified Birds of prey? 0 Norfolk Total 0 0 ILLEGAL TRAPPING June Birds of prey? 0 Moray (OTHER) August Sparrowhawk 1 0 North Yorkshire Oct Tawny owl 0 1 East Sussex Unspecified Sparrowhawk 0? East Riding of Yorkshire Total 1 1 OTHER OR TYPE Jan Peregrine falcon 0? Derbyshire UNKNOWN March Buzzard 0 1 Aberdeenshire Buzzard 0 1 Aberdeenshire Buzzard 0? Aberdeenshire Peregrine falcon 0? Derbyshire Peregrine falcon 0? East Ayrshire April Buzzard 0 1 South Lanarkshire Buzzard 0 1 South Lanarkshire Buzzard 0 1 South Lanarkshire Buzzard 0 1 South Lanarkshire Peregrine falcon 0? West Yorkshire Peregrine falcon 0 1 Lancashire Peregrine falcon 0 1 Lancashire Peregrine falcon 0 1 Lancashire Peregrine falcon 0 1 Lancashire May Hen harrier 0 2 Highland Hen harrier 0? Highland Peregrine falcon 0? Lancashire Short-eared owl 0 12 South Yorkshire June Kestrel 0? Kent Peregrine falcon 0? Shropshire Peregrine falcon 0 1 Lancashire Unspecified Birds of prey 0? Northumberland Peregrine falcon 0? West Yorkshire Total 0 25 For definitions of the categories confirmed and probable please see page 6.? no bird found, but the most likely/known target is listed. Month Victim Number Poison County Bait January Tawny owl 1 Alphachloralose Angus - January Blackbird 1 Alphachloralose Armagh - January Dog 1 Alphachloralose Armagh - January Magpie 1 Alphachloralose Armagh - January Mouse 1 Alphachloralose Armagh - January Red kite 1 Mevinphos/Phosdrin Caerphilly - January Cat 1 Carbofuran East Ayrshire - February Raven 1 Carbofuran Highland - February - B Aldicarb West Midlands Pigeon bait x 1 March Buzzard 1 Carbofuran Angus - March Buzzard 1 Carbofuran Angus - March Buzzard 1 Alphachloralose Highland - March Buzzard 1 Carbofuran Leicestershire - March Buzzard 2 Alphachloralose Perth and Kinross - March Buzzard 1 Carbofuran Scottish Borders - March Buzzard 1 Carbofuran Scottish Borders - March - B Carbofuran South Lanarkshire Rabbit bait x 1 March Raven 1 Carbofuran South Lanarkshire - March Dog 1 Methomyl Surrey - March - B Strychnine Wiltshire Apples April Buzzard 1 Alphachloralose Angus - April - B Aldicarb/carbofuran Cumbria Pigeon bait x 1 April Red kite 1 Brodifacoum Derbyshire - April Buzzard 1 Carbofuran East Ayrshire Pigeon bait x 1 April Raven 1 Alphachloralose Fermanagh - April Red kite 1 Carbofuran Highland - April Dog 1 Methomyl Kent Bread April Red kite 1 Carbofuran North Yorkshire - April Buzzard 1 Alphachloralose Perth and Kinross - April Buzzard 1 Alphachloralose Perth and Kinross - April Buzzard 1 Alphachloralose Perth and Kinross - April Carrion crow 1 Alphachloralose South Lanarkshire Grain April - B Carbofuran South Lanarkshire Rabbit bait x 1 April Raven 1 Carbofuran South Lanarkshire - April Magpie 1 Carbofuran South Lanarkshire - May Buzzard 1 Carbofuran Down - May Raven 2 Mevinphos/Phosdrin Highland - May Buzzard 1 Carbofuran Moray - May Cat 1 Aldicarb Scottish Borders - June Red kite 1 Alphachloralose Angus - June White-tailed eagle 1 Carbofuran Angus - June Golden eagle 1 Carbofuran Argyll and Bute - June Fox 1 Carbofuran Argyll and Bute - June - B Carbofuran Argyll and Bute Sheep x 1 June - B Carbofuran Cumbria Pigeon bait x 1 June - B Mevinphos/Phosdrin Moray Rabbit bait x 1 June Badger 1 Mevinphos/Phosdrin Nottinghamshire Egg bait x 1 June Red kite 1 Carbofuran Scottish Borders - June - B Carbofuran Scottish Borders Rabbit bait x 1 June - B Carbofuran Scottish Borders Pigeon bait x 2 June - B Carbofuran Scottish Borders Rabbit bait x 1 June Buzzard 1 Carbofuran Scottish Borders

31 Appendix IV Confirmed poison abuse incidents during 2009 Appendix V Schedule I nest robberies during 2009 Confirmed Month Victim Number Poison County Bait June - B Alphachloralose Tyrone Rabbit bait x 1 July Golden eagle 1 Carbofuran Angus Grouse bait x 1 July Buzzard 1 Carbofuran Antrim - August Red kite 1 Carbofuran Carmarthenshire - August Buzzard 1 Alphachloralose Perth and Kinross Pheasant bait x 1 August - B Metaldehyde Suffolk Bread August Cat 1 Alphachloralose Tyrone - September - B Alphachloralose Aberdeenshire Egg bait x 2 September Domestic chicken 11 Brodifacoum Kent Grain September Buzzard 1 Carbofuran Scottish Borders - September - B Bromadiolone Somerset Grain September Dog 3 Strychnine South Yorkshire Sausage October Red kite 1 Alphachloralose Down Rabbit bait x 1 October Buzzard 2 Carbofuran Dumfries and Galloway - October Buzzard 1 Bendiocarb Herefordshire Pheasant bait x 1 October Raven 5 Bendiocarb Herefordshire Pheasant bait x 2 October Buzzard 1 Bendiocarb Herefordshire Pheasant bait x 1 October Sparrowhawk 1 Bendiocarb Norfolk Pigeon bait October Red kite 1 Carbofuran Perth and Kinross - October Buzzard 1 Alphachloralose South Lanarkshire Rabbit bait x 1 October Red kite 1 Alphachloralose Wiltshire Partridge x 1 November - B Bendiocarb Herefordshire Pheasant bait x 1 November Raven 1 Bendiocarb Herefordshire - November - B Bendiocarb Herefordshire Pigeon bait x 1 November - B Bendiocarb Herefordshire Pheasant bait x 2 November - B Bendiocarb Herefordshire Meat November - B Bendiocarb Herefordshire Pheasant bait x 1 November - B Bendiocarb Herefordshire Pheasant bait x 1 November - B Bendiocarb Herefordshire Pheasant bait x 1 November - B Bendiocarb Herefordshire Pheasant bait x 1 November - B Alphachloralose South Lanarkshire Rabbit bait x 1 November Buzzard 1 Alphachloralose South Lanarkshire - November Buzzard 2 Alphachloralose South Lanarkshire - Total 81 Note: Items grouped in shading refer to one incident involving more than one species. B indicates that a bait but no victim was found. Species No. of nests Nest content County Barn owl 1 Chicks South Ayrshire Goshawk 1 Eggs Dumfries and Galloway Osprey 1 Eggs Highland Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks Cumbria Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Cumbria Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Cumbria Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Cumbria Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Cumbria Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks Dumfries and Galloway Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks Nottinghamshire Total 10 Probable Species No. of nests Nest content County Barn owl 1 Chicks Norfolk Goshawk 1 Chicks Dumfries and Galloway Goshawk 1 Chicks Nottinghamshire Hobby 1 Eggs Bedfordshire Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks Cumbria Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Cumbria Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Cumbria Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks Derbyshire Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks Devon Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks Dumfries and Galloway Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks Dumfries and Galloway Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Dumfries and Galloway Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Dumfries and Galloway Peregrine falcon 1 Unknown Dumfries and Galloway Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks East Ayrshire Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Edinburgh City Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Isle of Anglesey Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Lancashire Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks North Lanarkshire Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks Nottinghamshire Peregrine falcon 1 Eggs Nottinghamshire Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks Scottish Borders Peregrine falcon 1 Chicks South Ayrshire Total 23 Probable the circumstances indicate that by far the most likely explanation is an illegal act has taken place

32 Appendix VI Wild bird related prosecutions in 2009 Date Act Section Charges Prosecutor Court Surname Plea Outcome Penalty Type Penalty Penalty Type 2 Penalty 2 Details 08-Jan Jan Jan Feb Feb Feb Feb Feb Mar Mar Mar Mar Apr Apr Apr Apr May-09 Animal Welfare Act (1) & 32(1) 2 CPS Scarborough Magistrates Wilkins NG D The charges related to razorbills and guillemots being trapped in fishing nets at Filey Bay on the Yorkshire coast. The case was discontinued at court on the grounds that the Animal Welfare Act 2006 currently has no jurisdiction at sea. Wildlife and 5(1)a 1 Fiscal Dumfries Sheriff Galbraith G G Fine 1,400 Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of setting a spring trap in the open to injure a Countryside Act wild bird and one charge of setting a set spring trap to kill a Schedule 6 animal (badger). Wildlife and Countryside Act 11(2)b 1 Fiscal Dumfries Sheriff Galbraith G G NSP Wildlife and Countryside Act 18(2) 1 RSPCA Trafford Magistrates Kilday G G Fine 930 Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of possession of equipment to trap wild birds and two charges of illegal possession of wild birds (five goldfinches, two siskins). Ordered to pay 1,294 costs. Wildlife and 1(2)a 2 RSPCA Trafford Magistrates Kilday G G Fine Countryside Act Wildlife and Countryside Act 1(2)(a) 2 RSPCA Camberwell Green Magistrates Wildlife and 18(2) 1 RSPCA Camberwell Green Countryside Act Magistrates Wildlife and 8(1) 1 RSPCA Camberwell Green Countryside Act Magistrates Wildlife and 1(2)a 1 RSPCA Camberwell Green Countryside Act Magistrates Wildlife and 18(2) 1 RSPCA Camberwell Green Countryside Act Magistrates Wildlife and 8(1) 1 RSPCA Camberwell Green Countryside Act Magistrates King (Snr) NG G Jail 10 weeks Defendant found guilty of two charges of illegal possession of wild birds (28 goldfinches), one charge of possessing equipment to trap wild birds and one charge of confining a wild King (Snr) NG G King (Snr) NG G Cannot be disclosed Cannot be disclosed Cannot be disclosed bird to a cage of insufficient size. Defendant was sentenced to ten weeks in prison and was banned from keeping animals for ten years. G G CSO 120 hours Defendant found guilty of one charge of illegal possession of wild birds (28 goldfinches). Sentenced to 120 hour Community Service Order (unpaid work). Defendant name cannot be released due to youth status. U D U D Wildlife and 15(a) 1 Fiscal Aberdeen Sheriff Cowe NG NG Defendant found not guilty on one charge of possession of a proscribed pesticide Countryside Act (carbofuran) Wildlife and 8(1) 1 RSPCA Carlisle Magistrates Fisher G G CD 6 months Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of illegally confining a bird (goldfinch) in a cage of Countryside Act insufficient size. Other charges relating to possession of equipment to trap wild birds and attempting to trap wild birds were discontinued. Wildlife and 18(2) 4 RSPCA Carlisle Magistrates Fisher U D Countryside Act Wildlife and 18(1) 1 RSPCA Carlisle Magistrates Fisher U D Countryside Act Wildlife and 1(1)a 2 RSPCA Didcot Magistrates Gale G G CD 6 months Defendant pleaded guilty to two charges of intentionally killing two mute swans. Ordered Countryside Act to pay 1,093 costs. Wildlife and 1(2)(a) 3 RSPCA Newark Magistrates Dennis G G Fine 125 Defendant pleaded guilty to three charges of illegal possession of wild birds (nine Countryside Act goldfinches, two siskins and one bullfinch). Ordered to pay 125 costs

33 Appendix VI Wild bird related prosecutions in 2009 Date Act Section Charges Prosecutor Court Surname Plea Outcome Penalty Type Penalty Penalty Type 2 Penalty 2 Details 28-May May Jun Jun Jun Jun Jun Jun Jun Jun Jul Jul Jul Jul Jul Jul Jul-09 Animal Welfare Act (1) & 32(1) 1 CPS Newport Magistrates Lucy U D Defendant pleaded guilty to intentionally killing crows in a crow cage trap in 2007, contrary to the general licence conditions. The case came to light after video footage of the incident was posted on the website YouTube. Wildlife and Countryside 1(1)(a) 1 CPS Newport Magistrates Lucy G G Fine 300 Act Food and Environment Protection Act 1985 Food and Environment Protection Act (12)a 3 CPS Welshpool Magistrates Partridge G G Fine 100 The fine relates to one charge of the illegal use of alphachloralose. NSP for the further guilty pleas to charges relating to the incorrect storage of 16(12)a 1 CPS Welshpool Magistrates Partridge NG D Wildlife and Countryside 5(1)a 1 CPS Welshpool Magistrates Partridge NG NG Act Wildlife and Countryside 5(1)b 1 CPS Welshpool Magistrates Partridge NG NG Act Wildlife and Countryside 18(2) 1 CPS Welshpool Magistrates Partridge NG NG Act alphachloralose and brodifacoum. One further charge relating to the incorrect storage of alphachloralose was discontinued. Defendant found not guilty on one charge of possessing an item capable of being used to commit an offence and two charges relating to setting an article in position with the intention of injuring a wild bird and using an article to kill a wild bird (two partridge baits laced with alphachloralose). Ordered to pay 100 costs. Wildlife and Countryside 1(2)a 2 RSPCA Greenwich Magistrates Oloyede G G CSO 120 hours Defendant pleaded guilty to two charges of illegal possession of wild birds (32 Act goldfinches, two linnets) and one charge of illegally confining birds in a cage of insufficient size. Ordered to pay 1,000 costs. Wildlife and Countryside 8(1) 1 RSPCA Greenwich Magistrates Oloyede G G CSO Act Wildlife and Countryside 1(1)a 1 RSPCA Chelmsford Magistrates Ekmekcioglu U D None One charge of illegally killing a wild bird (mute swan) discontinued. Act Wildlife and Countryside 1(2)(a) 3 RSPCA Rotherham Magistrates Fitzpatrick G G Jail 16 weeks Act suspended for 1 year Wildlife and Countryside 6(1)(a) 2 RSPCA Rotherham Magistrates Fitzpatrick G G Jail 16 weeks Act suspended for 1 year Wildlife and Countryside 18(2) 1 RSPCA Stratford Magistrates Muscat G G CD 18 months Act Wildlife and Countryside 1(2)a 2 RSPCA Stratford Magistrates Muscat U D Act Wildlife and Countryside 18(1) 1 RSPCA Stratford Magistrates Muscat U D Act Wildlife and Countryside 5(1)d 2 RSPCA Stratford Magistrates Muscat G G CD 18 months Act Wildlife and Countryside 1(2)a 1 RSPCA Stratford Magistrates Muscat G G CD 18 months Act Curfew Order 2100 to 0800 Defendant convicted of three charges of illegal possession of wild birds (20 red-backed shrikes and three stonechats) and two charges of selling wild birds (ten red-backed shrikes). On 25 September 2009, defendant appealed against Curfew Order 2100 to 0800 the 16 week suspended sentence initially handed down by the judge - and was promptly sentenced to an immediate custodial sentence of eight weeks in prison. Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of illegal possession of wild birds (five greenfinches, one goldfinch), two charges of using wild birds as live decoys and one charge of possession of equipment to trap wild birds. Two further charges of illegally possessing wild birds and one charge of attempting to take a wild bird were discontinued. Defendant was ordered to pay 693 costs

34 Appendix VI Wild bird related prosecutions in 2009 Date Act Section Charges Prosecutor Court Surname Plea Outcome Penalty Type Penalty Penalty Type 2 Penalty 2 Details 14-Jul Jul Aug Aug Aug Aug Aug Aug Aug Aug Sep Sep Sep-09 Control of Trade in Endangered Species (Enforcement Regulations) 1997 Control of Trade in Endangered Species (Enforcement Regulations) (1)a 4 RSPCA Bodmin Magistrates Crowle G G Fine 2,500 Defendant pleaded guilty to four charges of the illegal sale of wild birds (28 goldfinches). Four charges of illegal possession of wild birds were discontinued. Ordered to pay 2,000 costs. 1(2)a 4 RSPCA Bodmin Magistrates Crowle U D 1(2)(a) 1 CPS Chester Magistrates Simcox John Keith 3(1)a 1 CPS Chester Magistrates Simcox John Keith 17(b) 1 CPS Chester Magistrates Simcox, John Keith 1(2)(a) 1 CPS Chester Magistrates Simcox John Keith 8(1) 3 CPS Kidderminster Magistrates G G CD 12 months Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of illegal possession of a wild bird (goshawk). Ordered to pay 60 costs. G G G G Jail Jail 8 weeks 8 weeks conc Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of illegal possession of a wild bird (goshawk), one charge of recklessly making a false statement in an attempt to register the wild bird and one charge of making a false statement for the purpose of obtaining a certificate for a wild bird at an earlier date. G G Jail 8 weeks conc Shaylor G G Fine 200 per charge Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of purchasing a barn owl without an Article 10 certificate and two charges of selling barn owls without Article 10 certificates. 1(2)(b) 2 CPS Llandudno Magistrates Dyche G G CSO 80hrs Curfew Order 28 days Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of illegal possession of 466 wild birds eggs and one charge of illegally possessing eight eggs belonging to Schedule 1 species. Sentenced to 80 hours Community Service Order, 28 day curfew order with electronic tag and ordered to pay 63 costs. 18(2) 1 RSPCA Skegness Magistrates Littlewood G G Fine 160 Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of possession of equipment to trap wild birds and one charge of illegal possession of wild birds (six goldfinch, two bullfinch, three siskin, one linnet). 1(2)a 1 RSPCA Skegness Magistrates Littlewood G G Fine Ordered to pay costs of (1)(c) 2 CPS South Shields Magistrates 1(2)(a) 1 CPS South Shields Magistrates 1(2)(b) 2 CPS South Shields Magistrates Dodsworth NG D Dodsworth NG D Dodsworth U D Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge in relation to the illegal possession of 78 wild birds eggs (12 belonging to Schedule 1 species). All 78 eggs were forfeited. Ordered to pay 300 costs. On 18/01/2010 the defendant lodged an appeal against his sentence. This was successful, and the judge quashed the 100 hour CSO (despite 80 hours having already been served), reducing the sentence to an absolute discharge. 14-Sep-09 1(2)(b) 3 CPS South Shields Magistrates Dodsworth NG D 14-Sep-09 1(2)(b) 1 CPS South Shields Magistrates Dodsworth G G CPS 100 hours unpaid work 14-Sep-09 18(2) 1 CPS South Shields Magistrates Dodsworth NG D 64 65

35 Appendix VI Wild bird related prosecutions in 2009 Date Act Section Charges Prosecutor Court Surname Plea Outcome Penalty Type Penalty Penalty Type 2 Penalty 2 Details 15-Sep Sep Sep Sep Oct Oct Oct Oct Nov Nov Nov Nov-09 Control of Trade in Endangered Species (Enforcement Regulations) 1997 Control of Trade in Endangered Species (Enforcement Regulations) (1)(a) 2 CPS Scarborough Magistrates Cannot be disclosed 5(1)(e) 2 CPS Scarborough Magistrates Cannot be disclosed 1(2)a 1 CPS South East Staffordshire Magistrates 8(1) 1 CPS South East Staffordshire Magistrates G G G G Jail Jail 4 months Defendant pleaded guilty to two charges of intentionally killing wild birds (two mallards) and two offences of using a mechanically propelled vehicle to kill wild birds. Defendant received a four month custodial sentence, a training order and a 12 month driving ban. A subsequent appeal to Crown Court resulted in the sentence being reduced. Defendant name cannot be released due to youth status. Wilkinson G G CPO 12 month supervision order Wilkinson G G CPO 12 month supervision order Curfew Curfew 16 wks 7pm-7am 16 wks 7pm-7am Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of illegal possession of four wild birds (sparrowhawks) and one charge of illegal purchase of wild birds. Defendant also fined 50 for breach of bail. Ordered to pay 65 costs. 8(1) 1 CPS Penrith Magistrates Milnes G G CSO 6 months Defendant pleaded guilty to offering two barn owls for sale without Article 10 certificates at the Appleby Horse Fair, Cumbria, in June The sentencing took place at Bolton Crown Court on 02/06/2010 (case moved due to other, unrelated matters the defendant had been awaiting trial for). 1(1)(b) 1 CPS Loughborough Magistrates 1(1)(b) 1 CPS Loughborough Magistrates Reek G G Fine 150 Defendants were jointly charged with intentionally destroying two active house martin nests. Both defendants pleaded guilty, were fined 150 each and ordered to pay 45 costs each. Snowden G G Fine 150 5(1)(f) 1 Fiscal Perth Sheriff Macdonald G G Fine 300 Defendant pleaded guilty to causing and permitting the destruction of 50 active house martin nests. 1(2)a 2 RSPCA Harrow Magistrates Beneder G G CSO 150 hours unpaid work 5(1)b 1 RSPCA Harrow Magistrates Beneder G G CSO 18(2) 1 RSPCA Harrow Magistrates Beneder U D 7(1) 1 CPS Knowsley Magistrates Fitzpatrick G G CD 12 months Defendant pleaded guilty to two charges of illegal possession of wild birds (six goldfinches, one siskin) and one charge of using equipment to trap wild birds. A charge of being in possession of equipment to trap wild birds was discontinued. Ordered to pay costs of 1,979. Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of the illegal possession of an unringed and unregistered Schedule 4 bird (goshawk). Ordered to pay 85 costs. 17-Nov-09 1(2)b 2 CPS Runcorn Magistrates Martins G G Jail 12 wks suspended for 12 months CSO 200 hours Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge relating to the illegal possession of 501 wild birds eggs and 43 eggs belonging to Schedule 1 species. Ordered to pay 80 costs

36 Appendix VI Wild bird related prosecutions in 2009 Date Act Section Charges Prosecutor Court Surname Plea Outcome Penalty Type Penalty Penalty Type 2 Penalty 2 Details 27-Nov Nov Nov Nov-09 1(1)(a) 18(2) 1 1 CPS CPS South Shields Magistrates Reed South Shields Magistrates Reed G U G D Jail 5 weeks Both defendants pleaded guilty to one charge of intentionally killing nine kittiwakes. A further charge of possessing items capable of being used to commit an offence was discontinued for both defendants. 1(1)(a) 1 CPS South Shields Magistrates Ord G G Jail 5 weeks 18(2) 1 CPS South Shields Magistrates Ord U D 17-Dec Dec-09 Firearms Act (1)(a) 1(1)(a) 1 1 CPS CPS Berwick Magistrates Berwick Magistrates Trotter Trotter G G G G Fine NSP 180 Defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of possessing a firearm without a certificate and one charge of intentionally killing a wild bird (herring gull). Ordered to pay 85 costs. 17-Dec Dec Dec-09 Customs & Excise Management Act (1979) Control of Trade in Endangered Species (Enforcement Regulations) 1997 Control of Trade in Endangered Species (Enforcement Regulations) CPS Durham Crown Court Seed G G Jail 9 months suspended for 2 years 8(1) 9 CPS Durham Crown Court Seed G G Jail 6 months suspended for 2 years 8(2) 2 CPS Durham Crown Court Seed G G Jail 6 months suspended for 2 years 17-Dec-09 Wildlife & Countryside Act 1(2)b 1 CPS Durham Crown Court Seed G G NSP Defendant pleaded guilty to four charges in relation to the import and export of raptor eggs; eight charges relating to the purchase or offer to purchase wild birds eggs; three charges relating to the sale of wild birds eggs and one charge relating to the possession of wild birds eggs. This prosecution forms part of an ongoing international egg trading enquiry. A confiscation order was made for the eggs and associated equipment and the defendant was also ordered to pay 1500 costs. 17-Dec-09 Wildlife & Countryside Act 18(2) 1 CPS Durham Crown Court Seed G G NSP Key to Appendix VI CD CSO D G NG NP NSP TIC U YRO Conditional Discharge Community Service Order Discontinued Guilty Not Guilty Not Proven No Separate Penalty Taken Into Consideration Unknown Youth Referral Order 68 69

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