Killing animals is a controversial subject for land managers. It is a difficult decision to favour one species over another. The RSPB kills deer to reduce the eating of vegetation which makes up ground-nesting birds’ habitat. 1110 deer were killed by the RSPB in 2014-15 and 1026 in 2016-17.
Workings and sources for the calculations are below.
Foxes controlled total per year
Total land in square miles
Foxes controlled per square mile per year
Gamekeepers shot 6 times more foxes if compared to the RSPB in 2016-17 and 9 times more if compared to 2014-15. The RSPB has increased predator control efforts by 48% from 2014-15 to 2016-17.Conclusions:
Workings and Sources:
2014-2015: The RSPB has 200 reserves covering 130,000 hectares =502 sq. miles: http://www.rspb.org.uk/about/. In a 17 month period the RSPB shot (along with 1,110 deer) 412 foxes = annualised rate of 291 foxes. Those 291 foxes in 502 sq. miles = 0.58 foxes per sq. mile http://www.rspb.org.uk/community/ourwork/b/martinharper/archive/2016/06/20/vert-control.aspx
2016-2017: The RSPB has 200 reserves covering 130,000 hectares =502 sq. miles: http://www.rspb.org.uk/about/. In a 12 month period 2016/17 the RSPB killed (along with 1026 deer) 434 foxes (including the 20 shot through the Curlew Trial Management Project, which includes individuals killed in the wider area, not just on the reserve itself). Those 434 foxes in 502 sq. miles = 0.86 foxes per sq. mile http://ww2.rspb.org.uk/community/ourwork/b/martinharper/archive/2018/06/28/the-conservationist-39-s-dilemma-an-update-on-the-science-policy-and-practice-of-the-impact-of-predators-on-wild-birds-5.aspx.
2016: GWCT says keepered land amounts 19,780 sq. km = 7,637 sq. miles. http://www.gwct.org.uk/research/species/birds/red-grouse/grouse-moor-survey/. GWCT estimates 39,000 foxes are killed by gamekeepers each year: 39,000 foxes in 7,637 sq. miles = 5.1 foxes per sq. mile. See page 3 on http://www.gwct.org.uk/media/651730/Snaring-QA.pdf