SIR, – I spent the last weekend of October studying the habitat and captive breeding of capercaillie and black brouse in north eastern Poland, at Kadzidlowo.

During this visit, we were taken to a remote forest where we were shown a lynx release area and from where they have now successfully released 14 lynx in recent years.

The government-backed policy is called ‘Born to be free’ and does not permit the management of any predator species such as goshawks, foxes or martins. The lynx there have no enemies in their territory and is devastatingly effective in killing prey such as deer.

It is worth noting that whilst the lynx behaved aggressively or even killed foxes, they did not eat them in Kadzidlowo. I also discovered that there were no sheep within hundreds of kilometres of the release area.

As I left, I posed the question of lynx taking sheep and was advised that in their opinion, sheep were easy prey and should not be allowed anywhere near lynx.

I left with the strongest view that the sheep around the Kielder forest would be faced with carnage, if the proposed release there went ahead.

Keith Chalmers-Watson,

Chairman World Pheasant Association,

Fenton Barns,

North Berwick,

East Lothian.