I have seen some articles early on in the Covid shenanigans which spoke of how animals were “reclaiming streets” and how the so called “lockdown” would benefit nature. These people must live in cloud cuckoo land, and I have only seen evidence to the contrary.
Along canal towpaths, and in parks people have multiplied like never before, threatening habitat, allowing dogs to run amok and of course leaving behind piles and piles of litter.
It is this last point which is now becoming intolerable and directly harming wildlife. The biggest source of threat to wildfowl remains discarded fishing line and associated rubbish. Some people continue to ignore local guidance and respect for the environment, and unfortunately local authorities continue to fail to put a stop to anti social behaviour that this “sport” appears to be symbiotic with.
Not only do we get the fishing line dumped idly behind in bushes, but the snacks, and of course the empty booze cans and accompanying packs of 4 and 6 which cause issues for ducks like this in West Bromwich.
These plastic tags are a real menace, yet there are biodegradable alternatives being suggested, which all environmental groups, rescuers and wildlife enthusiasts need to lobby their MP about to ban the drink industry in the UK from continuing to kill and maim our wildlife with their cheap plastic shit.
There is no question that free fishing on pools lies behind the problems of this anti social menace , as it is quite apparent that responsible anglers and match anglers do clear up their rubbish with the threat of being removed if they fail to do so. Local authorities have got into the habit of failing to challenge unacceptable behaviour on their own site assets. No one would allow drinking in libraries or tolerate rubbish being thrown on tennis courts, so why do they fail to stop this around their pools where nature lives?
Every year, I like many other rescuers have to spend a great deal of time trying to help these casualties after I have done my own job, and many have to be taken to a rescue centre or vets to recover, at the expense of the rescue and those transporting them. All this as a result of careless action or ill conceived bad angling practice.
That is why we will be writing to all the leaders of the four black country boroughs asking them to join our campaign to end free fishing on its pools, ban all night fishing, and start to deal robustly with the issues surrounding this lethal litter. Education campaigns are clearly not alone going to stop this habit , and enforcement must start to be practiced.
It is interesting to note that children can perhaps be our educators, like the notice I saw below on a pool in Dudley. Last week I had to catch the male swan on this pool which had a 2cm hook in his beak and line attached, making feeding almost impossible.
If a nine year old girl knows the difference between right and wrong, perhaps those in authority should start to show some responsibility to helping others like her bring about positive change, instead of siding with the drunken idiot jobless who spoil it for the many. It is a question of sides, and it’s time the leaders showed which one they are on.