September 2008

September 2008 News

All change at the Midland

Blame the festival-goers. And the weather. The Midland Game Fair, being held this weekend (20-21 Sept) at Weston Park near Telford in Shropshire, has had to change its layout due to muddy conditions on part of the traditional site - resulting from an exceptionally wet August, and the V Festival which brought 85,000 music fans to Weston Park.

The organisers say that they have risen to the challenge, and this year's Midland Game Fair will be as good as ever.

Regular Game Fair visitors should watch out for a new traffic management system, and be aware that your favourite stands will be in different locations this year. The map above can be dragged onto your desktop and printed as a useful guide to this year's show layout.

Sporting Shooter will have our usual stand, in a new positon in the relocated Gunmakers Row. Drop in to meet editor James, gun expert Diggory, and the rest of the team!

SCA: "Let landowners kill raptors"

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Landowners should be allowed to kill raptors when numbers get out of control, the Scottish Countryside Alliance moorlands director has said.

Tim Baynes has stated that birds of prey, in particular buzzards and goshawks, are becoming unmanageable and are causing a serious threat to fragile, protected and game birds.

Mr Baynes explained, "It's an increasing problem as the number of buzzards and birds of prey goes up. We won't notice it for a couple of years and by the time it's obvious, it's too late.

"It needs the will to look at it as an ecological problem and see how many of these species can we tolerate if we want to have the other birds about. Moorland is a very fragile habitat."

While landowners can apply for a licence to control birds of prey to protect other species, not one has been granted. For such a licence to be granted, painstaking evidence over five years is needed and this lack of cooperation, Mr Baynes says, is forcing some landowners to take illegal action.

"Some people might resort to poisoning. It's totally wrong, but if the law is completely inflexible that may be a reason why it is happening. No-one wants to poison things, and it's a crime with quite a big ticket but there will be some people who think they have got no option."

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