Rise in crow numbers blamed on game shooting

A sharp rise in the numbers of pheasants and red-legged partridges released in the UK by the shooting industry may have increased the nations population of crows and buzzards, potentially affecting predation on other species, a study has found.

According to research conducted by the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) and published in the British Ecological Society’s Journal of Applied Ecology yesterday, 41-50 million captive-bred pheasants and partridges are released into the wild each year. This is far more than other European countries – 3m in Spain and 12-17 in France.

No impact assessment has ever been conducted into the multi-million pound industry.

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