Ruddy Cull

Marksmen could be let loose on land and waterways in Manchester if the Government passes fast track legislation this Autumn. In their targets will be Ruddy ducks. Having already slaughtered thousands of birds in a trial cull, the environment ministry is now seeking Government permission to wipe out virtually the entire Ruddy duck population.

The ministry acknowledges that half of land-owners, including city councils, have refused to allow culls on their land. However, the new legislation would give the environment ministry and the pest control companies a free hand on anybody's land, including gardens!

Manchester Animal Protection and the Animal Aid charity are calling on residents to write to their MP and environment minister Michael Meacher to demand an alternative policy. MAP points out that there has never been a bird extinction scheme, here or in Europe. MAP add, "The cost of exterminating the Ruddy duck will run into millions, money that could be more effectively spent clearing waterways and preserving the natural habitat. Breeding areas could be set up and the duck population controlled by removing eggs from nests at the right time. This is a tried and tested method of controlling wildlife."

You can write to Michael Meacher, Minister for the Environment at Nobel House, 17 Smith Square, London SW1P 3JR or sign an online petition.

Maria Wood, Manchester Animal Protection (0845 456 2492,
[Taken from article in Area News Today (23/8-5/9).]

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