23 Nov 2023

RSPB: Two-thirds of confirmed illegal killings of birds of prey last year linked to shooting estates

Chief Correspondent

Around two-thirds of the confirmed illegal killings of birds of prey last year are linked to shooting estates.

That’s according to the RSPB’s latest report on bird crime, which we can exclusively reveal.

Buzzards, red kites, goshawks, hen harriers, peregrine falcons and white-tailed eagles have all fallen victim to shooting, trapping and poisoning – adding to a total of 61 reported killings last year.

The Moorland Association Chairman Mark Cunlife-Lister told Channel 4 News:

“There has been a dramatic drop in incidents of around 44% from last year’s figures (provided in the 2021 RSPB Birdcrime report).

The reduction in confirmed incidents reflects an industry-wide commitment to tackle wildlife crime.

Only 19.7% of confirmed illegal persecution incidents across the UK relate to grouse shooting.

Harriers numbers are at a 200-year high in England with record numbers of chicks fledging every year.”