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Shooting the Government

FREE MARKET FAIRY TALES points out that:

to shoot driven pheasant costs (the shooter pays) about 25 per bird, for grouse it is likely that you will be charged in the region of 50 per bird. However, to rid the country of its rather too randy 6,000 ruddy ducks is budgeted to cost 3.3m, or if you like a whooping 550 per bird (the Government is going to pay the shooters).
That Ladies and Gentlemen, is why the Government is never the solution, always the problem.


You might well ask why kill any Ruddy ducks in the first place... no one has ever proved that the UK population, rather than populations of escaped birds in Holland & France, contribute to the 90 or so found each year in Spain and inter-breeding with endangered Spanish white-headed ducks to leave only hybrids. A lot cheaper to shoot 100 a year in Spain rather than 3000 or 6000 (no agreed figure !) in the UK.

In fact this is all 'Eco-politics' - every time UK agencies criticise the Spanish record or proposals on conservation, the Spanish say 'how can you say that, you who are undermining our flag-ship effort to save the White-headed duck by not controlling these Ruddy ducks'. So to keep the Spanish sweet, we will spend 5.3 million (DEFRA figure I found) on top of previous expenditure from 1995 to date on this nonsense.

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