BY NIGEL BEAN (& PAUL READ)
A couple of years back I wrote a series of articles on the part the RSPB played in helping Labour obtain a hunt ban in 2004. Today I sit back with a metaphorical cigar while reading in newspapers that supporters are now refusing to renew their membership and animal rights protesters even forced them to take down their stand at a recent event in Scotland because of the ‘sudden’ need to cull predators.
The protesters and membership deserters are not the ones to blame here. They have had institutionalised brainwashing into the belief wildlife can manage itself, foxes are not pests and they control their own number. The level of brainwashing was so deep-rooted that when they were told the truth the disbelief became such that they turned on the charity.
(One should never puff on a cigar at the thought of culled animals but there is joy to be had in watching these self-preserving liars get their comeuppance at last.)
Labour’s argument to ban hunting was non-existent. Foxes were being extensively culled keeping livestock losses to a minimum, so nothing needed to change. In true Labour tradition, if a problem doesn’t exist – invent one. This enables them to step forward declaring they have a solution.
They turn to their cohorts in animal rights namely, LACS, IFAW and the RSPCA. They in turn supply academics with lots of cash to create biased reports. Two reports emerged that allowed Labour and the animal rights groups to ‘spin’ the idea foxes are not a pest and they control their own number.
It was this ‘spin’ the RSPB proliferated through its largely urban-based, 1 million strong, left wing membership. That was all well and good 20 years before social media when information could be controlled, and people generally only read whatever supported their view. But when Andy Richardson – an Ex-Gamekeeper from Scotland – got hold of the information from the RSPB showing they can kill up to 700 foxes over two years on their reserves and these figures start turning up in your twitter timeline, it really is game over RSPB.
How the RSPB hid information from the members and the public
Imagine the scene at the Burns Inquiry evidence gathering sessions – naturally, as a charity relying on public donations and government funding, their independent and impartial evidence is crucial to the inquiry. Dr Mark Avery, the conservation director for the RSPB at the time, only has to tell the truth to remain impartial, he states – “at the RSPB we don’t use hunting dogs below or above ground to control foxes, we sometimes shoot up to 412 foxes a year across 28 reserves plus a range of other pests to protect ground nesting birds all paid for by donations from the public. We are indebted to farmers surrounding our reserves who use a mixture of methods including dogs and snares that help keep the number we shoot at 412 foxes”
The whole situation turns farcical as the RSPB now conspire with Labour and their animal rights cohorts to hide the number of foxes they kill, not only from the public but also from their duped membership in case they stop donating.
Comments such as this one give an idea of how far they were prepared to mislead their own membership:
“I know ‘they’ kill foxes – I used to know a keeper on the Dungeness marshes who they employed strictly ‘off the books’ to kill foxes on the reserves there!”
So the RSPB claimed neutrality when asked to submit evidence to the Committee of Inquiry into Hunting with Dogs in England and Wales and asked their submission be left off the website, thus making it unavailable for public scrutiny, this was honoured by the committee as shown below.
(Fig2) – The Royal Society for the protection of birds do not have an asterisk by their name indicating their submission was not available for public viewing.
Claims of RSPB neutrality were exposed shortly after as nothing more than cynical when their submission, hidden from the public, got referenced in two reports written by the main opposition to hunting namely the RSPCA, IFAW and the League Against Cruel Sports.
Exposing the myths – “The RSPB protects nesting bird colonies on its reserves by shooting foxes when necessary. This organisation does not use dogs to hunt foxes. 10 – 10 RSPB submission to the Committee of Inquiry into Hunting with Dogs”
Countdown to a ban – “The RSPB protects nesting bird colonies on its reserves by shooting foxes when necessary. This organisation does not use dogs to hunt foxes. 28 – 28 RSPB submission to the Committee of Inquiry into Hunting with Dogs”
So claims of neutrality appear to be nothing more than a ruse to hide the number of foxes the RSPB killed because if the public found out they shoot and kill up to 700 foxes over a two year period they would be laughed out of town for claiming the fox is not a pest.
At the centre of this shenanigans was the vegetarian and Defra minister Elliot Morley, a keen bird watcher and member of both the RSPB and the League Against Cruel Sports and, by association, IFAW who part-funded his secretary. At a PAWS seminar he claimed “wildlife does not need managing”, proving beyond doubt he had swallowed the lies wholesale. He was later sent to jail for being “engaged in the wholesale abuse of the expenses system”. No surprise to find he was a close friend of Dr Mark Avery, a staunch card-carrying Labour supporter and Director of Conservation at that time with the RSPB. He now leads the campaign to have grouse shooting banned and is a member of the League Against Cruel Sports.
At the centre of this crooked pool of middle-class activists, socialists and armchair conservationists lies a black heart focused on extracting a comfortable lifestyle from a gullible public. To maintain their comfortable lifestyles it is essential that funds flow in with uninterrupted regularity, hence the regular campaigning.
To be fair, organisations such as the RSPB do much good work, unfortunately they occasionally blot their copybook in the most insidious of manners.
To suggest predator management is not necessary while quietly carrying out culling, hidden from their supporters, is being economical with the truth at best.
At worst it is perpetuating a myth and allowing other organisations and individuals to take the heat for something they know is a perfectly normal and inevitable practice.