Everything has it's beauty, but not everyone sees it. - Confucius
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Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Blood at Summer Leys

Warning……a bit graphic, and a personal rant.

I went to Summer Leys nature reserve this morning. Got there nice and early, and quite a bit of mist over the water. From one of the hides I watched as a hell of a lot of Greylag Geese began to take off.

But the mornings visit was spoilt for me, by some shooting that was going on in a field adjacent to the reserve.

Yea, that’s right; two scumbags were shooting Canada Geese and Greylag Geese, as they flew from the reserve, over an adjacent field.

Now I know some people like hunting; that’s their prerogative, I choose not to like it. I hate it. And to witness it happening right next door to a nature reserve, was a bit much to stomach. Even the ‘hunters’ out there, must surely agree that that’s not right.

The field was ‘baited’ first, with some dead Greylag Geese, spiked on sticks, so they sat up; and a few wooden decoy Canada Geese.

Once the ‘bait’ is there, it’s just a matter of time before the unfortunate birds fly over. And if they don’t come too close, they can always be lured by the sound of other geese. Yea, these bastards stooped that low!

The next clip is of four unfortunate geese that got conned by sound. One didn’t survive. I missed the birds completely while filming, but the gunshots are very clear; and near!
The thud at the end, is of the poor bugger hitting the ground.

And the two ‘sportsmen’ collecting their prize.

I hope their testicles drop off.


  1. Keith I am sorry the hunters have spoilled your morning! Love the feather in your previous post. Macro is lots of fun!

  2. I'm not certain I agree with you. although not sure about the baiting.

    If they are hunting for food then the taking of a canada goose or two is fine by me. I choose to buy mine from Tesco. I abbrogate(sp) the responsibilty for killing the bird.

    as to by a nature reserve. the area to the east of the path at titchwell are owned by Thornham
    wildfowlers and I've seen shooting take place.

  3. I don`t understand the peoples who killed the animals for their hobby!
    The pictures and the videos are interesting and very sad.

  4. And so do I and if they don't I'm happy to go and rip them off!!! This just makes my blood boil, how can people kill beautiful creatures for fun (I won't call it sport as that is an insult to 'proper' sportsmen and women)

    I know I sound angry but in reality I am deeply saddened by this sort of thing, all life is so short and tenuous and it baffles me that we humans cannot understand that we should look after our fellow beings however 'lowly' some may consider them.

    For some time now I have had the following quote by Joseph Wood Krutch on my sidebar

    'When a man wantonly destroys a work of man we call him a vandal; When a man destroys one of the works of God, we call him a sportsman.'

    I don't think you have to be religious to appreciate that sentiment.

    Well done for publishing that Keith and I hope you will forgive me for not viewing the videos...

  5. DAMN! HOW horrible to witness such a thing...I get in the face of the hunters around here GUN OR NO GUN ---get out of my area!! I have run ins with them every dang Fall ITS deer and wild turkey here in my area...The greedy land owners lease to hunt clubs..I do everything I can to make it hard for them, I complain every year I chase their dogs away...I honk my horn and make all sorts of noise to make the deer run away!! I leave letters in their hunt lodge siting them for trespass, I call the game warden, the Department of NR , but still it goes on!! HUNTERS are killers--- there are NO Hungry hunters in the civilized world hungry people can't afford to purchase weapons!!!!~ Killing for sport is barbaric and the sooner we outlaw it the better in my book...Image living here in the South where everyone is armed and dangerous-and nothing is sacred~

  6. Thanks David. Yea, I was expecting 'hunters' this morning.

    Thanks Pete. I certainly wouldn't expect everyone to agree with my view; be a pretty dull world if we all agreed. The shooting went on for over 3 hours, (the time I was there), so I guess more than a few birds were slaughtered for personal consumption.

    Thank you for your comment Kozma. I'll never understand the 'attractions' of hunting.

    Jan, thank you. That's certainly a fitting quote.

  7. Thanks Dixxe. Having all that on your own doorstep must be hard to live with. You certainly make it tough for them. Well done for that :)

  8. I agreed with Jan, pull their testicles off. I think they are wealthy, because they wouldn't be wearing camouflage jackets, and both them with shot guns, The bastards!!!!!!!!!!

  9. Thanks Bob. Totally agree with you :)

  10. Hi Keith I guess it is fare to say that this has you pretty rilled up and I don't blame you!!
    There is no sport in lay, in wait, in a field next to a reserve!! That totally takes hunting out of the equation!
    The word hunt has nothing to do with what happened here!!
    This is very disturbing but I do hope you can be angry and get past it and use that energy to help with these kinds of situations....and
    hoping there testicles drop off..well I can agree to that ; }

  11. Thanks Grammie. Yea, pretty angry about it. Like you say, no 'sport' in waiting next to a reserve.

  12. As Pete says I have also been birding the other side of the fence at Thornham and Snettisham with wildfowling taking place but I've never seen this type of obvious 'baiting'. There may be case for legal species control but in many instances it seems a little ad hoc and as for shooting wildlife for fun.. Definitely Not.
    I have also experienced the aggressive nature of hunters in Bulgaria and wished I had more than a telesope!

  13. I couldn't watch all of this. so sad. can you turn in your videos and pics in to authorities so they can do something about it?

  14. HOW PATHETIC. If people are going to hunt, then they need to be hunting for a purpose - like FOOD.
    baiting, calling, and next to a reserve? those men have a special place in hell waiting for them.

    I hate hunting too - but when it is done respectfully and out of a true need, then I can make my peace with it.
    buttholes like those guys though - well, I hope their testicles drop off, too.

  15. Thank you for your comment Frank.
    I can almost understand the case for 'legal species control'. Perhaps we could start with the hunters?

    Thanks Doreen. I need to make a few more enquiries on this incident.

    Thank you Jen. I think the thing that really got me, was the fact it was next to a reserve. And they were calling them to their death. I hope they soon get to their 'special place'.

  16. i must admit at thornham the hunter goes out with a gun and bags a brace and goes off.

    I don't like it but as I've eaten duck I'd be a bit of a hypocrite to object! and honestly I'd say it was generally less cruel than the average bird in a supeprmarket.

    I don't think there is a legal reason not to shoot greylag or canada geese.

    I have sent your link to the Northamptonshire wildlife trust. the baiting seems a "bit" extreme

  17. I cant even tell you how much I enjoyed your Utubes. How wonderful see nature at her very best .. and for the men I hope so too.
    Canada Geese why would anyone shoot them. I dont under. I hope something can be done about the killing of all these beautiful birds.
    Loved your blog.

  18. Ahh I'm with you on the anti-hunting stand. I understand and accept that there are (mostly, I hope) ethical hunters out there but I don't get the lure of the "sport." In all honesty, I never thought I'd like fishing, but I do. The difference is that you can return a fish to its water. You can't take back a shot.

  19. Thanks Lisa. I don't understand it all either.

    Thank you for your comment Hilary.

  20. I am amazed at the lack of knowledge and understanding many of the people in the comments have shown.

    First , the greylag would not be there if it was not for hunters. They have been extinct in lowland UK for several hundred years until hunters raised the geese from eggs and released them into the wild. For selfish reasons , they want to shoot and eat geese , but if they had not done this there would be no greylag geese for you to enjoy in the first place.

    Second , Canada geese are not native and the UK government is aiming to remove them from the British countryside . They can be shot at any time and their eggs destroyed by law.

    Almost all the British countryside is man made and man has to maintain a balance it can not be left to nature otherwise we will have just a few strong dominant species and many of the birds and animals we like to see would disappear from the countryside. In some areas greylag geese have become too successful causing a lot of agricultural damage and are starting to become a threat to other birds. 700+ greylag were roosting on a small pool further along the coast a month or so ago. They deposited a huge amount of droppings ( around 8 oz a night ) which caused an algae bloom and the toxins from the algae killed large numbers of mallard , teal , gulls and other water birds. Half the UK population of spoonbills started to feed in the pool and only by swift action draining the pool and reflooding it with freshwater and the scaring away of the geese was a disaster avoided.

    Its high time we got away from the Fluffy bunny mentality and realised nature can be cruel and in a developed country needs managing. We leave nature alone at our peril and biodiversity will suffer.

    R Baker

    I am only using anonymous because my software will not reconise the other choices.

  21. Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment R Baker.

    You are almost right about Greylag Geese. Yes they are native to this country, (the ancestor of most domestic geese, with records dating back some 5,000 years), and their numbers had declined as a breeding bird.
    Maybe you even know why they declined.
    It was re-established by releasing birds in ‘suitable areas’.
    (Was that the hunters then, who “raised the geese from eggs and released them into the wild” ?)
    They’ve done rather well. Rather too well it would seem.
    Seems ‘mankind’ didn’t make a very good job of meddling with nature there.

    Second, Canada Geese were first introduced to Britain in 1665 as an addition to the waterfowl collection of King Charles II at St. James’ Park. They remained relatively scarce until the second half of the 20th century, but then adapted rather successfully to the new environment created by changes in agriculture.
    Another bit of ‘mankind’s’ meddling with nature then, which seems to have gone a bit wrong.

    Toxic algae bloom caused by Greylag Geese? I do know that algae need certain things to grow – water, carbon dioxide, sunlight and nutrients. I must admit to not having thought of goose crap as a nutrient though.

    You are more than welcome to your opinion, as I am of my “fluffy bunny mentality”.
    I am well aware that “nature can be cruel”; I observe it.
    I’m also well aware that some humans can be cruel and misguided; I’ve observed it.