Was it just me - maybe it was - but was Peter Kendall in a bit of a bad mood today?
Have a look at the Farmers Guardian debate and judge for yourself.
Peter seemed very keen to have a go at me and the RSPB whatever I said.
And how predictable to see NFU mouthpiece Guy Smith going back to criticising the FBI - there is precious little acceptance, by the NFU President or by Guy Smith, that there is a problem with farmland birds. The NFU's attitude to the environment may be summed up by Peter Kendall's phrase 'wrapping (farmers) in green tape'. Remember please, NFU, that's the taxpayers' money you get and so there do have to be some rules attached to it.
But very good to see lots of good comments - many I guess from farmers who are working closely with the RSPB in all sorts of ways.
In response to Esssex Peasants comments that intensification of farming hasn't ocurred in the last 20 years. Utter twaddle, everytime a large farm buys up fields or small farms the first thing that happens in this area is that hedges are removed and any reasonable wildlife habitat is immediately destroyed.One of my favourite green lane areas which was fantastic for birds and butterflies was utterly devastated when a large farm bought adjoining fields aand took over it's management. Gosh I can think of some good meanings for the acronym NFU but am afraid they are not printable here.
Badgers and TB - let us have a little clarity. TB is a disease of high population and poor hygiene in humans - look where it is at its most virulent? Badgers populations are high where they occur; why else would they create setts in abnormal habitat? Best guesstimates suggest 500,000 badgers in UK, double the fox population. The disease must be cured before the UK dairy industry disappears. The cure is lowering the badger population in places of known disease, then filling in the setts so that the bacillus is killed.
As to the NFU’s comments about the CFE - I suggest it is not disingenuous – it is that they have not found the right method of convincing their members to sign up. Their members do not understand they can still be just as profitable and look after wildlife; they have to change their mindset and understand how to do it.
EP - yes thanks, I did see it, but as its primary objective is to avoid regulation, which seemed a tad disingenuous to me and hardly promoting ground breaking conservation measures I didn't pay it a huge amount of attention.
Sooty, Well said
on the opening page of the NFU web-site - right at the top in large letters - there is a link to the campaign for the farmed environment. Have a look.
Nightjar - we are growing less crops, have less animals, use less fertiliser and pesticdes than we did in 1990. We are also 10% less self sufficient in indigenous food stuffs.
We spend 90% of net income on conservation, public education and advocacy
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