The possible reintroduction of predators and its impact of farms

31 August 2018

This week in the Agriculture Committee in the European Parliament discussed a study on "The revival of wolves and other large predators and its impact on farmers and their livelihood in rural regions of Europe", presented by Mr John D. Linnell from the Norwegian Institute for Nature Research and available to read here: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/meetdocs/2014_2019/plmrep/COMMITTEES/AGRI/DV/2018/08-29/The_revival_of_wolves_EN.pdf. It is a complex and controversial issue with its own pros: http://www.lynxuk.org/publications/ and cons: https://www.nfuonline.com/cross-sector/environment/wildlife/wildlife-news/our-response-on-lynx-reintroduction/.

The story has received interest at regional level too, with a possible trial in Northumberland covered here: http://www.itv.com/news/tyne-tees/2018-08-09/six-eurasian-lynx-set-for-trial-return-to-northumberland/. Given Kielder Forest, we tend to think of Northumberland as somewhere with a reasonable number of trees. However, despite Kielder, we have below the English average for tree cover: England on average has 10% tree cover, Northumberland has only 8%.

It’s this overall lack of tree cover which raises questions as to whether introducing the lynx to Northumberland is a good idea or to put it another way, maybe even Kielder Forest simply isn’t big enough for an animal which is able of covering very large distances? Let me know your thoughts!

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