Birders really need to use their loaf a bit before reporting Ruddy Duck and making their whereabouts public knowledge. If the public know, it doesn't take DEFRA long to cotton on.
As immoral as it seems, this government has cut NHS workers wages, frozen public sector pay, pillaged pensions funds, made major cuts to every local authority, raised taxes and told us in the words of Simply Red, "Money's Too Tight To Mention."
Apparently it's not too tight to carry on the funding for culling Ruddy Ducks?
The link below, suggests that to date, it has cost the British Tax Payer in the region of £740 per Ruddy Duck Culled? Justify that in these times of austerity?
FERA, Is the body responsible for the culls, and they really are intent on the eradication of the Ruddy Duck in the UK.
This is their current policy.
Future work in the UK
It is now clear that eradication of Ruddy Ducks from the UK is feasible, and Defra has agreed to fund additional work in 2011/12 which should result in further significant falls in the population. This is in line with the commitment of other European countries to eradicate Ruddy Ducks elsewhere by 2015, which will ensure that the threat posed by Ruddy Ducks to the White-headed Duck is finally removed.
So, before you think about reporting a Ruddy Duck sighting, remember you are aiding in its total eradication in the UK.
Even trying to be clever with veiled references a five year old can decipher, make you look a fool, and the Ruddy Duck look even rarer.
If you are lucky enough to spot a Ruddy Duck locally, or any where in the UK for that matter, enjoy the bird and keep stum about it. Walk away knowing you are helping that bird avoid the FERA marksman.
If you doubt how seriously FERA take Ruddy Duck reports, the stimulus for me jotting this down was that today, due to a few birders reporting what they had seen, ten Ruddy Duck were culled on a London Reservoir.
An exert from the report reads;