SIR, – It seems that every week I read about attacks on farm stock by wildlife. In the years before I retired in 2011, my cows and calves were subjected to vicious attacks by flocks of ravens resulting ultimately in the deaths of many calves.

All this was well documented in this paper and with other organisations, so it pains me to think of the damage a sea eagle could do, being so very much bigger than a raven.

Over the years, we have been fed so much rubbish information to justify the reintroduction of these species, i.e. sea eagles only eat fish, Mull tourism will be boosted, but why go all the way to Mull if you can see them in other places as they are trying to place them now.

Beavers? Am I the only one who can remember an article in the Glasgow Herald (as it was then) way back about the mid-1990’s stating that the Eurasian beaver did not eat trees, only the Canadian type did that, yet there was a picture of a tree being gnawed. Once established, any of these reintroduced species will multiply and spread at an alarming rate, especially as they will almost certainly get protected status and have no predators.

Beaver have spread through mainland Europe at about 25 km/year. We constantly hear that Scotland needs more wet lands and that they will reduce flooding – what rubbish, water logged ground may as well be concrete as any extra water will run right off. What is needed is a comprehensive re-draining plan for the country.

I fear worse is to come with any lynx reintroduction and the continued efforts for wolves and bears to be re-introduced too.

These environmentalists seem to think that a compensation scheme that pays out some money after the provision of proof is all that is needed. As farmers, we are always told about the welfare of our stock being a priority so how can we accept our stock being ripped apart by vicious claws and beaks?

I've had the heartache of dealing with a fit healthy calf that has had its tongue eaten off or its eyes removed or the horrendous damage to its rear end – and most were still alive when found. The oft-used comment by the environmental brigade that it was born dead, or would have died anyway, is no longer acceptable.

I came to the conclusion years ago that ‘everything everywhere’ was the unspoken motto of the environmentalists and those of you still farming and your organisations should realise that.

It is well known what damage the various species can do to our farm stock and our land, yet when that happens we are told it’s a one off or not normal behaviour. If that is so, then environmentalists should have no trouble in agreeing to something akin to vicarious liability allowing them to be held responsible for their actions from the one who opens the cage, right up to who signed on the dotted line to make it possible.

Jim Climie


Whiting Bay,

Isle of Arran.