New petition launched to Natural England: Withdraw licences to take peregrine falcon chicks from their nests for use in falconry

Posted on the 24th April 2020

On 16th April, Natural England posted a blog announcing, and attempting to justify, that they have issued licences to take peregrine falcon chicks from their nest, for use in falconry.

Taking a chick from their nest and natural habitat to be used in needless breeding programmes is deeply unethical, and this decision must be reversed. Peregrine falcons have seen an increase in their numbers in recent decades, so these breeding programmes are in no way beneficial to the species, but only humans involved in falconry.

In their blog post, Natural England attempt to dignify this taking of chicks from their natural habitats, by calling falconry ‘an ancient tradition’. This is a similar justification given by others for brutal blood-sports such as bullfighting and fox hunting, and should not be a valid excuse for any form of animal exploitation.

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What is falconry?

Falconry is the sport of using falcons who are kept by humans in captivity to hunt other birds and small mammals. Some falconry websites seem to indicate that the definition is changing to include those to keep the birds and train them, and may not use them for hunting.

This archaic sport exploits animals and results in the human-caused deaths of other wild animals.  We feel that Natural England should not be supporting this industry in any way, and licensing individuals to take chicks out of the wild for this purpose is immoral and must be stopped.

Following coverage from The Guardian, we are launching a petition to Natural England to urge them to revoke these licences.

Please sign and share this petition widely, so we can demonstrate that taking these chicks from their nest is directly against the interests of the public, and of course the animals themselves.

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