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BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman

Divis Sweeney 03 Jul 06 - 02:22 PM
greg stephens 03 Jul 06 - 02:35 PM
Rapparee 03 Jul 06 - 02:41 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 03 Jul 06 - 02:46 PM
Les from Hull 03 Jul 06 - 02:47 PM
Bunnahabhain 03 Jul 06 - 02:53 PM
Clinton Hammond 03 Jul 06 - 03:09 PM
greg stephens 03 Jul 06 - 03:12 PM
John MacKenzie 03 Jul 06 - 03:15 PM
Divis Sweeney 03 Jul 06 - 04:02 PM
robomatic 03 Jul 06 - 04:27 PM
Clinton Hammond 03 Jul 06 - 04:43 PM
Liz the Squeak 03 Jul 06 - 04:47 PM
Divis Sweeney 03 Jul 06 - 04:49 PM
John MacKenzie 03 Jul 06 - 05:06 PM
open mike 03 Jul 06 - 05:44 PM
greg stephens 03 Jul 06 - 05:57 PM
Mr Fox 03 Jul 06 - 06:13 PM
Herga Kitty 03 Jul 06 - 06:28 PM
Dave Hanson 04 Jul 06 - 01:26 AM
John MacKenzie 04 Jul 06 - 04:29 AM
Divis Sweeney 04 Jul 06 - 04:44 AM
The Shambles 04 Jul 06 - 04:59 AM
Liz the Squeak 04 Jul 06 - 05:06 AM
The Shambles 04 Jul 06 - 05:13 AM
The Shambles 04 Jul 06 - 05:18 AM
The Shambles 04 Jul 06 - 05:24 AM
The Shambles 04 Jul 06 - 05:27 AM
A Wandering Minstrel 04 Jul 06 - 08:27 AM
Leadfingers 04 Jul 06 - 08:41 AM
Raptor 04 Jul 06 - 08:52 AM
Dave Hanson 04 Jul 06 - 09:41 AM
John MacKenzie 04 Jul 06 - 09:46 AM
Liz the Squeak 05 Jul 06 - 04:25 AM
Arnie 05 Jul 06 - 04:50 AM
Liz the Squeak 05 Jul 06 - 04:58 AM
GUEST,Elfcall 05 Jul 06 - 10:35 AM
The Shambles 05 Jul 06 - 01:53 PM
GUEST,Jon 05 Jul 06 - 02:04 PM
Ebbie 06 Jul 06 - 12:31 PM
Jim Dixon 06 Jul 06 - 12:34 PM
Divis Sweeney 06 Jul 06 - 12:52 PM
M.Ted 06 Jul 06 - 01:10 PM
Divis Sweeney 06 Jul 06 - 01:42 PM
Mr Fox 07 Jul 06 - 06:51 AM
Bunnahabhain 07 Jul 06 - 07:46 AM
The Shambles 07 Jul 06 - 07:47 AM
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Subject: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Divis Sweeney
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 02:22 PM

Just saw the most shocking report on B.B.C. television news tonight.
pigeon fanciers living around the Mourne mountains have hired a hitman to wipe one one of the most beautiful birds we have over here, the Peregrine Falcon. The R.S.P.B. say around forty birds have been shot and killed recently. Birdwatchers in the area have spotted a guy in cammo with a shotgun on several occasions.Pigeon fanciers in the area say they are sick of the amount of birds they are losing to Peregrines. I remember a local guy who kept pigeons telling me that most fanciers own traps to get rid of domestic cats. I am a keen bird spotter and cat owner so you can understand my anger.

The R.S.P.B. say attacks on birds of prey by Pigeon fanciers, although rare do occur in some parts of the U.K.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: greg stephens
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 02:35 PM

They have been coming down on killers of birds of prey much heavier in recent years in Britain, which is a great thing. The buzzards have flocked back to Staffordshire and Cheshire over the last decade, they had been driven out by game keepers. Though a pair I have been looking out for by the M6 over the last few years seem to have vanished this year: there are still some unreconstucted posoners and shooters about, but I think generally things are going the right way. The red kites are settling in well and spreading all over the place.
    I am sorry to hear of this peregrine problem in Ireland. I'm afraid pigeon owners are bound to lose the occasional bird to peregrines, that's the way it is. A small price to pay for the pleasure of sharing the world with wonderful birds like peregrines. (Of course, if I was a pigeon I might not be writing this).


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Rapparee
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 02:41 PM

You do that in US and you face federal charges -- big fines, possible jail time.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 02:46 PM

The problem is that in a pigeon/peregrine encounter, the pigeon is basically "unarmed". So, why not even up the odds a bit? Outfit every tenth pigeon with little miniature air-to-air missiles....


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Les from Hull
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 02:47 PM

Yes Greg, pigeons aren't renowned for their literary prowess.

Thanks for bringing this to our attention, Divis. The more people know about it the more likely we can get something done about it. And if you are on good terms with any peregrine falcons over there you might point out that there are lots of feral pigeons in Hull who nobody would really miss.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Bunnahabhain
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 02:53 PM

The penalties exist over here, but there's one slight problem.

Wildlife exists in the countryside. The police do not exist in the countryside. Anyone shooting or poisoning birds has a greater chance of being caught by a meteorite than a policeman....


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 03:09 PM

Killing peregrine falcons to keep pigeons?

That's like throwing out good steak to eat shit......


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: greg stephens
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 03:12 PM

Actually, several successful prosecutions have happened in the last few years. Of gamekeepers, and more important, occasionally of their employers. With the results surely everyone in the countryside in Britain has noticeed: a startling increase in birds of prey numbers. Yippee. it's only a start, but we are on the way.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 03:15 PM

Problem is, a good racing pigeon is worth a lot of money, and where cash is concerned scruples tend to go out the window.
Giok

Like this


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Divis Sweeney
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 04:02 PM

Good points and support folks thanks.
Sadly as Bunnahabhain says it's hard to police our countryside as only about a third of it is populated.

As you say Greg the law has been coming down hard on these people, sadly I can't recall any charges being brought over here in recent times.

It's one of those points Les we need to highlight to see something being done. The pigeon fancier interviewed tonight on that report seemed smug when the interviewer asked him about the hitman.

I am still angry when I think about it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: robomatic
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 04:27 PM

We need to breed more and better peregrines.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 04:43 PM

"a good racing pigeon is worth a lot of money"

No.... that someone will PAY money for it, doesn't mean it's WORTH it....

Look what some people spend on comic books......


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 04:47 PM

Only good pigeon is one in a pie.. or a peregrine.

Nasty diseased creatures... will spread more and nastier diseases than your average sewer rat.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Divis Sweeney
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 04:49 PM

Agreed, I know these guys pay a lot for their birds, but because someone paid money for a bird doesn't give them the flying rights to the sky !


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 05:06 PM

Yes it's sad that one bird should have more value than another in someone's eyes. We have Red Kites and Hen Harriers being killed by poison bait here in the highlands where gamekeepers regard grouse as being worth more than these birds.
I know that if I had my way, it would be the gamekeepers who were fed the poison baits.
Giok


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: open mike
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 05:44 PM

what is R.S.P.B?


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: greg stephens
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 05:57 PM

Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Mr Fox
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 06:13 PM

That's 'protection of BIRDS', not pigeons which are, of course, rats with wings.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Herga Kitty
Date: 03 Jul 06 - 06:28 PM

And for a moment I thought this was an Archers-related thread....

Kitty


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 01:26 AM

Gamekeepers must be a moronic type, here in Yorkshire they kill red kites to protect game birds, red kites being mainly carrion feeders, consequently do more good than harm.

eric


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 04:29 AM

Please for the sake of accuracy can we distinguish between feral pigeons which ARE vermin, and loft/racing pigeons which are clean, well fed and well looked after.
Giok


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Divis Sweeney
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 04:44 AM

The all still crap on my shirts on the washing line Giok, disregardless of class.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 04:59 AM

Not sure that the label of 'vermin' is helpful.

Such labels can be changed to suit. As the case here. During WW2 - pergrines were labelled the 'vermin' and were shot to protect the pigeons carrying important messages from British secret agents.

Just as numbers were recovering from this - they and all of our pirds of prey were then hit by DDT etc.

So the ratio of prey to predator has always been an artificial one. Which is why moves to cull any birds of prey now should be resisted - no matter how pursuasive the agrument used to justify it may sound.

Fanciers must accept the few birds that they may lose to peregrines in the same way as they accept the many more that just get lost, choose other homes, add the feral population or water down the few remaining populations of Rock and Stock doves by breeding with these.

It is bad enough that the position of BOP at the top of the food chain will always mean their population levels will be subject to any unintentional risks caused by the human population - without us intentionally setting out to cull them.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 05:06 AM

I've an idea... rather than kill the peregrines; trap them, ship them down to London and give them to Ken Livingstone who will then deploy them around certain parts of the city to eat the nasty pigeons that crap all over statues.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 05:13 AM

Given time and the prevention of culls - I am sure that perigrines could make a return to nesting in our all of our city centres. A move that has already started without any trapping being required.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 05:18 AM

Peregrines in London

Peregrines have been seen occasionally in and around London for many years, but until recently most sightings were of the occasional individual hunting over the Thames marshes or London reservoirs during the winter months. However, by the mid 1990's individual birds began to spend the summers in London, and by the late 1990's peregrines were a regular, albeit rare, sight above the skies of the capital. The steady increase in sightings of peregrines in London culminated with suspected breeding in 2000 and confirmed breeding in 2001. Peregrines are now seen regularly at prime roost sites including the Millennium Dome, Battersea Power Station and the Tate Modern. Hunting peregrines can be seen almost anywhere, including over Trafalgar Square, but are most frequently seen along the Thames and over the large reservoir complexes in the Lee Valley and in south-west London.

Urban nest sites

As peregrines increasingly colonise cities such as London, office buildings, tower blocks and other tall landmarks within the capital may be used for nesting and roosting sites. Urban peregrines will exploit a range of nooks, crannies and ledges on buildings and will occasionally nest in abandoned crow's nests on electricity pylons or similar structures. If a pair of peregrines are present around a tall building or structure during the breeding season (March-July), building managers, maintenance contractors, and others with access to the external areas of tall buildings, should be aware of the possibility of a nest-site being occupied.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 05:24 AM

I couldn't copy the URL for the above site but this one has some more details.

http://www.rspb.org.uk/england/southeast/london/features/peregrines.asp


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: The Shambles
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 05:27 AM

And for the pair nesting on the Tate Modern.

http://www.rspb.org.uk/birds/brilliant/sites/tate/index.asp


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: A Wandering Minstrel
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 08:27 AM

I believe the All-England club at Wimbledon has an official resident peregrine who gets to work quite busily at this time of year


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Leadfingers
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 08:41 AM

I know a guy who is a Pigeon Fancier - HIS problem is , he cant find a pigeon that would fancy Him !!





OK , I'll get my coat !


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Raptor
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 08:52 AM

Every time I hear "Pigeon Racing" I picture these tiny Jockeys

Raptor


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 09:41 AM

Matt McGinn once wrote a song called something like ' Keep Glasgow Clean, Eat A Pigeon A Day '


eric


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 04 Jul 06 - 09:46 AM

We have a variation on that up here.
'Keep Scotland tidy, shoot a tourist a day'

G.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 05 Jul 06 - 04:25 AM

Devon had a saying like that, but bearing in mind the inhabitants of Clovelly, it was 'keep Devon tidy, eat a tourist a day'.

They'm vunny in Deb'n...













I can't find a link but there was a family called Gregg who kidnapped, robbed, murdered and ate unwary lone travellers.... Like I said, they'm vunny in Deb'n...

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Arnie
Date: 05 Jul 06 - 04:50 AM

Last year I regularly saw a pair of peregrines over the white cliffs of dover - obviously thought they were bluebirds! However, this year there has been no sign of them - do they migrate and return each year to the same location? If so, I'm afraid they are no more.....


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 05 Jul 06 - 04:58 AM

There was a peregrine over Hastings on May Day, so they may have just moved a bit down the coast.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: GUEST,Elfcall
Date: 05 Jul 06 - 10:35 AM

Has anybody read Patrick Neates' book 'The London Pigeon Wars' those suckers were well orgnaised !

Elfcall


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: The Shambles
Date: 05 Jul 06 - 01:53 PM

Last year I regularly saw a pair of peregrines over the white cliffs of dover - obviously thought they were bluebirds! However, this year there has been no sign of them - do they migrate and return each year to the same location? If so, I'm afraid they are no more.....

You don't say what time of year you saw them and was it in fact a breeding pair or just two birds seen at the same time?   

They use regular nest sites which have features that suit all their requirements - as many long deserted sites providing these requirements are now again occupied. Often there are a number of alternative nest sites in the same general area which can be seen by the birds from the same look-out points. So not seeing them flying in exactly the same spot, does not automatically mean that they are no more.

The birds both adults, young and wandering strangers do visit these sites and use the look-out points in the winter as part of a larger home range, although most wander off. Hasting to Dover is a bit far for the breeding range of the same pair but could easily be the size of their much larger and over-lapping winter hunting range.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 05 Jul 06 - 02:04 PM

When I lived in N Wales, I think I saw a Peregrine swoop down from somewhere in the sky and over the roof of our house - it was like lightening.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Ebbie
Date: 06 Jul 06 - 12:31 PM

I'm bemused by the phrase: 'regular but rare' as given in the article that the Shambles cited. How can something be rare if it is regular?

Haley's Comet approaches earth every 75 years - so it is 'regular', but one would not use 'rare' to describe it. 'Infrequent' is more accurate.

The Peregrine Falcon has taken up residence in cities in the US also, including in Alaska. Juneau has at least one nesting pair.

We also have a smallish colony of pigeons. I don't feel strongly about them, either for or against- but I do like to see them wheeling as one, their wings flashing in the sun. Why are their feathers so beautiful?

A friend of mine recorded videos when she was traveling in Europe. One image that stayed with me is of the green lawn at St. Peter's Basilica. In the video there is a flock of pigeons on the lawn, every one of them pure white. When they take to the air it is as if bundles of handkerchiefs have been scattered in the air.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 06 Jul 06 - 12:34 PM

I believe peregrine falcons nest on cliff faces. There aren't many cliffs in Britain, are there? I know Beachy Head, the cliffs of Dover, and some in the Lake District. Couldn't the pigeon fanciers simply avoid routing their races past those areas? As well as city centers with tall buildings, of course.

Alternatively, they could just redefine their sport. A winning pigeon is not just one that flies fast, but one that can avoid the peregrines. Let natural selection take its course.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Divis Sweeney
Date: 06 Jul 06 - 12:52 PM

Good point Jim allowing nature to take it's course. The Peregrines over here in the Mourne Mountains nest in the forrest area. There are several beauty spots and picnic areas here with car parks. The pigeon owners actually take their birds to these parks and let them off from here !

Speaking to a R.S.P.B. warden yesterday at Lough Neagh, he said a serious amount of Peregrines have been shot this year in the Mournes. Breeding has been badly hit. So sad.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: M.Ted
Date: 06 Jul 06 - 01:10 PM

Pigeonkeeping is not simply a quirky hobby, there is a great deal of wagering on the races, so the fast birds have real, and ongoing value because they produce income--at any rate, if we can believe the following. the pigeons have friends that will stick up for them Story about Pigeon/Hawk Encounter


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Divis Sweeney
Date: 06 Jul 06 - 01:42 PM

Again as I said before, these guys feel because they paid a lot for their birds that gives them control of the sky. If birds of prey get in the road of their birds, shoot them. It's the same treatment for cat owners living near a loft, trap the cat and kill it. No one owns animals, we just care for them. Try telling that to these guys !


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Mr Fox
Date: 07 Jul 06 - 06:51 AM

Jim, there are plenty of cliffs in Britain - pretty much all of south-west England and west Wales in the west, vast chunks of the Scottish coast in the north and a fair bit of Yorkshire in the east. East Anglia and the Thames estaury are pretty flat but aren't really a pigeon-racing area.

I'm afraid the rat-racers are just going to have to accept that there are going to be losses. I'd rather see peregrines than pigeons anyway.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: Bunnahabhain
Date: 07 Jul 06 - 07:46 AM

I think regular but rare means they are rare, but distributed quite evenly over suitible habitat, unlike some species, which are rare, as they have been driven out of most of their former range due to culling/hunting (wolves) or pollution (salmon) and introduced competitors (red squirrels)- all UK examples.

The main cause of decline in Raptors has been culling, and as that has been mainly stopped the numbers ar recovering.


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Subject: RE: BS: Peregrine Falcons face a hitman
From: The Shambles
Date: 07 Jul 06 - 07:47 AM

The really ironic thing is that every summer - huge vehicles carrying thousands of racing pigeons are transported here to Portland, to be released in races..........Into the lion's den?

I am not sure if these racers are aware of this possible risk to their birds - but fortunatly this small island's population of perigine falcons has now returned to what is likely to be its maximum capacity. In recent years at least 5 pairs have nested or attempted to breed........

I am not aware of any casulties resulting from the arrival of what could be viewed by the resident perigrines as 'fast food' wagons.


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