Anorak News | Carrion Scavenging

Carrion Scavenging

by | 29th, January 2004

‘IF there could be an official bird for the Hutton Report, it would surely be the vulture.

‘I was told I could have Blair for breakfast’

Some might argue for a hawk or a dove, but the vulture seems ideally suited to the type of people who picked over the bones of a man hounded to his death with so much relish.

But scavengers should be careful what they eat, lest they get stuck up to their own necks in the mire and wind up sick or worse.

That’s the situation among the vultures of India and Pakistan, which have been feasting on carrion steeped in a flavour enhancer called diclofenac.

The Independent says that this pharmaceutical drug, used as an anti-inflammatory tool in humans and livestock throughout the region, is having a devastating effect on three types of vulture.

In the past ten years, up to 99 per cent of white-backed, long-billed and slender-billed volutes have gone the way of so many MoD scientists.

It’s little wonder Tom Cade, of The Peregrine Fund, which supported the research, says that he and his helpers are in a race to save the species.

And it’s some race, since Debbie Pane, of the Royal Society For The Protection of Birds, tells the Guardian how the decline in vulture numbers is steeper than that of the dodo.

So if you want to sponsor a vulture, do so today. After all how different can it be to paying taxes to the self-serving scavengers who run this fair and whitewashed land?’

Posted: 29th, January 2004 | In: Broadsheets Comment | TrackBack | Permalink