To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
(1) whether her Department has allocated any funding to (a) research into ways of reducing the buzzard population in or near pheasant shoots and (b) reducing the buzzard population;
(2) what consultation she plans to have (a) within and (b) outside Parliament on proposals to reduce the buzzard population in or near pheasant shoots.
DEFRA has not allocated any funding for use in reducing the buzzard population. DEFRA funded the Food and Environment Research Agency to undertake a desk study in January 2012 entitled ‘Approaches to mitigating bird of prey conflicts with pheasants at release pens, outdoor poultry and lambs’ at a total cost of £24,694. The report can be found on the DEFRA website.
DEFRA has made provision for up to £125,000 to be available in each of the current and following two financial years for additional research to look at the relationship between raptors (including buzzards), livestock, wildlife and game birds. DEFRA will collaborate with all the organisations that have an interest in this issue to identify and develop any future research proposals.