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Our once great RSPCA is being destroyed by a militant tendency

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Our once great RSPCA is being destroyed by a militant tendency

Post  Panda on Sat 5 Jan - 0:51

Our once great RSPCA is being destroyed by a militant tendency


The animal welfare organisation has badly lost its way under its new leadership








Where is your money going? The RSPCA often brings cases of animal cruelty, including hunting, to court Photo: Paul Grover






By Charles Moore

7:54PM GMT 04 Jan 2013

446 Comments




One must always treat lawyers with respect, so let me state at once that I have absolutely nothing against Jeremy Carter-Manning QC. From his entry in Who’s Who, I see that he was educated at St Paul’s School, called to the Bar nearly 40 years ago, and that his recreations include “food and wine”, which he pursues in the Reform Club. I have no doubt he is esteemed in his profession.


Most of us might have passed our entire lives without ever hearing of Mr Carter-Manning QC, were it not for a bill submitted for his costs at Bicester magistrates’ court last month. He charged £73,310.80 plus VAT. (His two fellow counsel added another £90,000.) Mr Carter-Manning’s services cost £300 an hour, so I calculate that he worked for roughly 244 hours on this case.


What was he doing? According to Gavin Grant, the chief executive of the RSPCA, which hired him, he was watching “hundreds of hours of footage” of the Heythrop Hunt to see if offences had been committed under the Hunting Act. Eventually, the RSPCA brought 52 charges against four hunt members. Two were acquitted, but two pleaded guilty to four charges of hunting a wild mammal with dogs, a charge so minor that it is classified as “non-recordable”. They – and the hunt corporately – were fined a total of less than £7,000.


The costs that the RSPCA submitted to the court were £326,000. The district judge, who rejected the RSPCA’s attempt to conceal this amount from public gaze, described them as “quite staggering”. Despite the RSPCA “winning”, the charity therefore had to pay most of them itself.


As I say, no blame attaches to Mr Carter-Manning QC. He must live. If he can get £300 an hour for staring at grainy amateur film to see if hounds are chasing after foxes, good luck to him. But the more one reflects on this enterprise, the more extraordinary it is.

Panda
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Re: Our once great RSPCA is being destroyed by a militant tendency

Post  tigger on Sat 5 Jan - 7:12

I'm against fox hunting, but this isn't the way to deal with it. Neither is sabotaging hunts by using dangerously aggressive methods.
I used to live on the edge of a large and wild 'park' in Herefordshire, plenty of rabbits, plenty of foxes. Plenty of sheep nearby who had nothing to fear from foxes who were no trouble at all. One dog fox was the size of a wolf so could easily have taken on a lamb, never happened.


The dogs don't exactly have a jolly life, spending most of their time in kennels. The tradition as it stands now, doesn't go back as far as the pro hunt activists like to think. It's nonsense to say it goes back to the 16th century. Killing foxes and pretty well anything goes back thousands of years. But it had a purpose. From enc. Britt:
Modern foxhunting took shape in the 19th century shortly after Hugo Meynell, the father of the modern English chase, started hunting, and it soon developed into a national upper-class pastime; Oscar Wilde famously called it “the unspeakable in full pursuit of the uneatable.”

This piece is from an Irish source: Leaflets on Line:

Give a fox a bad name...

How often do you hear people say that foxes are "vermin which must be controlled"? This is certainly a phrase that fox hunters will use freely in an attempt to justify their activities so let us consider this claim a little more closely. Based on the facts - and not hearsay - foxes can not be accurately termed vermin.

All the scientific evidence shows that the fox is not a significant pest. It is not officially classed as vermin - the term vermin does not appear in the 1976 Wildlife Act). The truth is that foxes can be a valuable asset to farmers by, for example, keeping down the numbers of rabbits, voles and rats which can cause damage to crops and forestry.

So from where does the myth of foxes being a pest come?

Much of the case against foxes stems from the finding of lamb carcasses at fox dens. It is assumed that these were live lambs killed by the fox. Reliable and independent research has shown that these carcasses result from the fox scavenging on dead lambs - lambs which have died from exposure for example - and that the numbers killed by foxes are low and insignificant.

Of course, the hunters themselves are keen to support the impression that foxes are a serious pest to farmers because this allows them to claim that their activities are beneficial tot he farmers.

In reality the damage caused by the hunts is likely to be a much greater risk to the livestock than the foxes.

Foxes are not a threat - The evidence

Here is a summary of a few of the many research studies carried out on foxes:

The lamb carcasses at fox dens are mainly carrion, i.e. a lamb already dead when taken by the fox.
Notes from the Mammal Society, No. 50, 1985, pp 291-296.

A study of lambing in upland areas showed that lamb losses were unaffected by the presence of foxes.
Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food report, 1985.

On the Scottish island of Mull, there are not foxes yet lamb production is no better than in comparable areas where there are foxes.
Journal of Applied Ecology, 1984, pp 843-868.

The Cruelty

Fox hunting is arguably the most sadistically cruel of all the legal blood "sports". The purpose of fox hunting is to chase the fox to exhaustion for an hour or more before the animal is literally torn to pieces by the hounds. This long and protracted suffering is an essential and desired part of the sport in the eyes of the hunters. If the control of foxes were the aim, faster dogs could be used or the foxes could be shot be skilled marksmen.

The dogs have to be blooded during the cub-hunting season (also euphemistically termed autumn hunting) and the terrier man is never far away should the fox find refuge down a drain or fox hole. All animal welfare organisations throughout the world condemn fox hunting.

Farmers and Hunting

If the foxhunters' claim that they are controlling a serious pest had any substance, you would imagine that farmers would welcome the hunt onto their lands.

Yet each Autumn you will see large numbers of farmers going to the trouble and expense of placing notices in the local press banning the hunt from their lands with "lands preserved" notices. They have found that the hunts do more damage than good, in many cases scattering livestock. In a typical case recently, a farmer claimed damages for ewes that had aborted after a hunt had come onto his land and scattered them. His claim was dismissed, one of the grounds for the dismissal being that he had not made it sufficiently clear that he did not want the hunt on his land. (see Troubled by the Hunt for advice on how to keep foxhunts off your land)

With increasing concerns over the possible spread of disease, farmers are becoming more reluctant to allow free passage for hunts over their land.

The Alternative

Fox hunters claim that what they really enjoy is not the kill, but working with hounds and riding across open country. If this is so, then a real alternative is drag hunting, where a scent (often containing aniseed) is laid for the hounds and riders to follow. Not only can drag hunting provide an exhilarating test for hounds and riders, it can also avoid serious damage to crops and livestock.

Die-hard foxhunters ridicule drag hunting - "it's not really hunting" is a typical claim. Of course there is one difference - there is no kill in drag hunting.

unquote.

Together with pheasant shoots, fox hunting is an idiotic 'sport'. Shooting a pheasant for the pot, fine. Culling deer and wild boar, fine. It all has a purpose and is part of keeping the balance in nature. Should there be a rogue fox, as with rogue dogs - shooting is the option.
If you want to ponce around in a uniform which marks you as 'one of the elite' go drag hunting.
I've seen hunts and I understand the thrill and the risk taking for the riders, but with a drag hunt all you're missing is the kill at the end. They still risk breaking their necks in the sport. They can still wear pink and still pretend to belong to a 'tradition' which started less than 200 years ago.






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Re: Our once great RSPCA is being destroyed by a militant tendency

Post  Panda on Sat 5 Jan - 9:24

Iv'e watched T.V. Documentaries about the RSPCA and they do seem to do a lot of good and it is true that the British have a love for dogs, cats etc , far greater than some European Countries.

I don't have any views particularly about fox hunting, but wasn't there a case recently where foxes were coming into town, and one attacked a baby I seem to remember.

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Re: Our once great RSPCA is being destroyed by a militant tendency

Post  malena stool on Sat 5 Jan - 12:00

If Foxes do need to be kept under control why not just cull them humanely using marksmen with rifles?

The truth is the Fox Hunting Fraternity get their highs by chasing and killing animals and will continue to do the same regardless of any laws to the contrary, being as in general they are all wealthy landowners with high powered connections and consider themselves to be above such restrictions.

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Re: Our once great RSPCA is being destroyed by a militant tendency

Post  Panda on Sat 5 Jan - 13:04

Half the time they don't get the foxes malena, it's the chase they enjoy.

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Re: Our once great RSPCA is being destroyed by a militant tendency

Post  kitti on Thu 10 Jan - 11:59

How can anyone say that foxes need culling......there life span in inner city areas are 18 months ...a miserable existence they have at that too.


Those bloody toffee nose gits who have nothing better to do with there time than to chase a fox across country land and lanes until it is exhausted and then torn to threads by hounds who have been trained to do this need to be horse whipped and dumped in horse shit.

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Re: Our once great RSPCA is being destroyed by a militant tendency

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