Thursday, December 06, 2007

Flying A Kite

The Scotsman printed most of what follows in their letter's column this morning.

The poisoning of three red kites in Perthshire has rightly been condemned by everyone from the RSPB to game keepers. But where do we draw the line? Apparently Scottish Natural Heritage think it's acceptable for wind turbines to kill these magnificent birds. Why do I say this? Because they have withdrawn their objection to a wind farm at Fairburn in Ross-shire because. According to SNH, "(the) loss of an additional one bird every one or two years, whilst not trivial, is going to be small in comparison with the likely loss of birds to the combined effects of persecution and natural mortality."

SNH admits mortality is already high enough to limit the northern population of red kites, so why support something that is going to make things worse? Simple, you introduce "appropriate mitigation" to reduce the killing. This amounts to "the bagging and removal of gralloch (deer offal) from the site." Their second 'act of mitigation' is even more bizarre. "Post construction monitoring of red kite use of the wind farm area during its operation and associated mortality." Now excuse me for being cynical but once the turbines are up it's all going to be a bit late. What do SNH propose doing, having a quiet word with the red kites? This is what Quangos do, cover their posteriors while the rest of us foot the bill.

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