Monday 11 June 2012

Visit to the Deer Initiative

Last week I had the pleasure of visiting the Deer Initiative within Cumbria and spent time talking to national experts about the challenges of retaining a balance amongst the sometimes competing issues. We covered the types of deer, their habitats and risks to them as well as the risks to people from vehicle related accidents. The number of road accidents involving deer is high and was brought close to home by one involving a colleague that week. Luckily no injuries.
One of the interesting issues was the status of deer as res nullius ie they are owned by no one. The Deer Initiative is a partnership and like so many such relationships it's value exceeds the sum of its constituent parts. Whilst covering issues of Deer in the rural countryside we explored Deer in urban environments.
The site
covers the initiative but also identifies agreed good practice.
In my role as ACPO lead for Wildlife and Rural crime it was very useful to see the extent of collaboration and the integration of statutory and voluntary sectors alongside land owners. Many issues shared, many views exchanged. I look forward to developing good working relationships with those involved.
My thanks to the Graythwaite Estate, Cumbria Deer Project, John Thornley, Peter Watson and Alastair Boston and to colleagues from the Forestry Commission who helped make the visit so informative.

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