BASC calls for voluntary restraint due to severe weather

Pond reeds

Due to the widespread severe weather BASC is calling for all shooters in the UK to exercise restraint, wherever it is needed, in the shooting of ducks, geese and waders.

The call is being made following seven days of severe weather. The species affected are geese, wild duck, released duck, woodcock, snipe, golden plover, coot and moorhen.

Voluntary restraint in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales should continue to apply until three consecutive thaw days or until a statutory suspension is enacted following 14 days of severe weather.

BASC’s head of wildfowling James Green said: “BASC issues a call for voluntary restraint in shooting ducks, geese and waders when it is clear that birds could be affected by the weather, but ahead of any statutory suspension of shooting.

“We would also call on other countryside users, such as dog-walkers, ramblers and bird-watchers to take care not to cause unnecessary disturbance to birds which may be struggling in the severe conditions.”

He added: “The decision to show restraint in shooting should be made by individuals where feeding or roosting is affected by snow or ice. It should be based on local observations of the condition of the birds and their habitats.”

If freezing conditions persist, statutory suspension of waterfowl shooting could take effect from day 14. Statutory suspensions normally last for 14 days but would be reviewed after seven days and could be lifted if conditions have improved. All dates are subject to change according to prevailing weather conditions.

Click here for more information on severe weather procedures, voluntary restraint and updates on the situation in all parts of the UK.