Bat poisoning prosecution highlights continued use of organochlorines

The first prosecution of a timber treatment company for damaging a colony of a protected bat species with anti-woodworm pesticides was successfully taken by the North Yorkshire Police this month. The case has also brought into the open the continuing approval of organochlorine pesticides for timber treatment when alternatives harmless to bats are now available.

All Britain's 15 native bat species, whose numbers have declined rapidly in recent years, are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. Anyone intending to disturb a bat colony resident anywhere but in the living-area of a house must notify the Nature Conservancy Council (NCC) and allow it to advise on whether the operation should be carried out and, if so, how.

On 18 January, Skipton Magistrates' Court heard that Protim Serv

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