Wildlife campaigner Trevor Weeks calls for No 10 to help stop deer cull

Wildlife Campaigner Trevor Weeks is petitioning No 10 to get involved and stop the proposed deer culls across England. Number 10 has today approved a petition set up by Trevor on the number 10 website.

The petition is asking the Prime Minister to prevent any deer culling to reduce down road collisions and damage to farmers' crops and to look at humane long term alternatives.

There are currently increasing calls for a cull of Deer due to a rise in road collisions and damage to crops. Deer culling, like the culling of any animal or birds is only short term and are never that effective, and not that practical to implement. It is impossible to prevent all deer collisions and damage to crops but they can be reduced.

"We are asking the Government to force DEFRA to help landowners and farmers to use humane methods of restricting access to crops by deer using fencing and other alternatives. We are recommending that wider grass verges are used in areas where deer road collisions occur allowing motorists and deer to see each other at a distance, as well as help landowners and councils erect electronic warning signs with sensors to warn motorists of deer on verges, which are more effective than static signs, plus to help fund deer fencing to help prevent access onto roads in more dangerous locations. The petition also calls for help to provide funding to councils to build under passes or over passes in key areas to help deer cross main roads safely as well as to ask Natural England to advise landowners of conservation areas to manage deer in a humane manner and prevent sheep being used in deer sensitive areas and habitats which could push deer onto crop fields." said Trevor.

"All too often people look to the easy and convenient ways of shooting an animal rather than looking at the long term cheaper solutions which do not cause the unnecessary death of animals" added Trevor, "these solutions have been used successfully elsewhere in the UK and other countries too. So it really comes down to councils and landowners taking responsibility and being given help by the Government to implement these actions. It is impossible to prevent all road accidents and damage which occurs but there are things which can be done to reduce the damage down to more acceptable levels."

"People have said in the past that these measures are too expensive despite other areas being able to afford them. In the short term culling may be cheaper but the cost adds up year after year and will eventually be more expensive than the long term solutions we are recommending," said Trevor.

"Shooting during the closed season is just unacceptable due to the stress and disturbance caused to pregnant deer. Even if the hunters shoot those who are not pregnant the entire herd becomes stressed as a result and as far as I am concerned this is unacceptable." said Trevor.

Anyone wanting to sign can visit the Number 10 website and view the petition at: petitions.number10.gov.uk/StoptheDeerCull

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Press Contact: Trevor Weeks, East Sussex WRAS, 07931 523958

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