Packham wants to make peace with Botham

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Packham and Botham

Packham and Botham appear to be on opposite sides of the fence when it comes to wildlife conservation. Botham likes to shoot animals for fun white Packham is a high-profile conservationist and a true animal advocate. He is precious to the animal advocates of the world and may he live long and prosper!

Packham and Botham

Packham and Botham. Montage by Michael using images in the public domain.

Lord Botham has a lot of admirers. He’s a crossbench peer and has been since October of this year. Chris Packham has clashed with Lord Botham before but wisely, I think, he’s extended an olive branch to Botham so that they can work together. He doesn’t want polarisation. He has said that their perceived hostility towards each other, “is perpetuating polarisation, which is a blight in our contemporary world. I’d rather sit down at a table and talk to him than have to read exaggerated mis-truths in newspapers”.

Packham is not hostile towards Ian Botham. Although Botham appears to be hostile towards Packham because he’s described him as being at the head of “grim eco-warriors”. He’s blamed Packham and the RSPB for trying to stop pheasant shooting (which Lord Botham loves apparently) by tying up game keepers and farmers in red tape. He is referring to the change in the law which regulates game bird shooting.

The regulations were needed because game bird shooting is damaging wildlife. Huge numbers of game birds were and are being imported into the UK to be shot. Many of the birds are not shot and I discussed the impact this has had on nature in a previous post.

Packham’s objective is better regulated, “legal shooting, so no more killing of raptors or killing of birds for no reason, and we want shooting to be regulated so it does not damage the wider environment”.

He wants to work with the shooting fraternity rather than there being an ongoing hostility between the two camps. Collectively they can manage wildlife and the land better in the interests of all he says.

Packham has described this week’s Scottish government decision to introduce licensing for shooting estates as “something really special”. The new measures are intended to make landowners more accountable and to stop the killing of birds of prey. Packham believes it must have been quite difficult for the Scottish government to introduce these regulations because of pressures from the shooting fraternity.

The shooters and the rural organisations said that the legislation would be “a seriously damaging blow to fragile rural communities”. They mean economically. The rural lot are strong lobbyists and the UK government have difficulty in standing up to them. I find them to be too destructive of wildlife and too cruel towards animals. They have a “humans are superior to animals” attitude which is distasteful.