BASC condemns Yorkshire Dales nest incident

A hen harrier

The UK’s largest shooting organisation, the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) has condemned an incident in the Yorkshire Dales where a nest of hen harrier chicks is suspected of being deliberately destroyed by human activity.

North Yorkshire Police is calling for anyone with information about the incident near Whernside earlier this year to come forward. 

The force says it has considered all the evidence, and strongly suspects that someone approached the nest after dark and deliberately killed the chicks.

BASC’s head of uplands, Gareth Dockerty, said the association condemned the incident and called on anyone with any information to assist the police investigation.

He said: “Any incident of wildlife crime is abhorrent, and the death of these hen harrier chicks is hard to comprehend.

“BASC has a zero tolerance attitude towards the illegal killing of birds of prey. We would urge anyone who has any information at all about this incident to contact police.”

BASC remains committed to working with partner organisations on the long-term recovery of hen harriers.

Mr Dockerty added: “We will not allow this incident to detract from the continued conservation success story, that has resulted in the best hen harrier breeding numbers for over a century.”

Anyone with any information regarding this incident is asked to contact North Yorkshire Police on 101 and quote incident reference number 12220107140, online via the North Yorkshire Police website, or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Read the Yorkshire Dales Bird of Prey Partnership’s reaction to the incident here.