Breeding numbers of some wading birds increased in years following predator control, the GWCT's Upland Predation Study has discovered. Lapwing numbers have increased by 66%
By Will Finch
Thursday, 23 August 2012
GWCT study endorses controlling predators
A major new study has shown that grouse moor management that includes predator control is the most effective way of conserving upland wading birds.
The nine-year Upland Predation Study, which was conducted by the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT), found that the breeding success of curlews, golden plovers and lapwings was three times higher when predators such as foxes and crows were controlled.
It also found that breeding numbers of the three birds — all of conservation concern — increased in years following predator control, but declined in other years.
GWCT’s upland research director, Dr David Baines, said: “It would be sad if we lost a significant fraction of our birdlife through want of a little wildlife management. The North Pennines — almost entirely managed for grouse shooting and with many waders — stands as a testament to the difference game management can make to conservation in the uplands.”
The rest of this article appears in the 22nd August issue of Shooting Times.
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