If you regularly watch wildlife in the Our Local Voice region please take the time to record your sightings and submit your records to RODIS or the Bio bank.
Not only will the records be taken account of should there be a future development (The developer has to do an environmental assessment including the impact on biodiversity but the records are an important feature in research and understanding more of our natural history which helps to protect them.
If you see any illegal activity other than an emergency 999 situations please report it in the numbers below. Many areas hold many rare birds and animals and are at risk from illegal activities such as grass fires in the breeding season which cause untold casualties and illegal hunting. Grass fires are in the main vandalism by kids who probably don’t realise the impact. We have in the past seen skylark and snipe chicks burned alive and in one case a family of hedgehogs that had to be put to sleep including two pups still alive but badly burnt.
Hunting by gun is legal if -
It is on private land
You have the permission of the owner.
You hold a licence both for the gun and the species you are hunting which must be non protected, Rabbits, Wood Pigeon etc.
On public land (defined as anywhere the public can go) it is a criminal offence to carry a weapon without it being in a secure case. If the gun is not loaded that is not relevant to the offence and even if cased you do have to have a reasonable explanation of your intentions. The law makes no distinction between an air rifle and an AK47.
To summarise if someone is carrying an uncased or using a gun or air rifle in a public place it is a criminal offence. If they are using a gun in a private place without the owner’s permission it is armed trespass and is a very serious offence.
Hunting with Dogs is illegal except for
- stalking and flushing out – but only to control pests and only if they’re shot as soon as possible afterwards
- hunting rats and rabbits
- retrieving hares that have been shot
- rescuing wounded animals, as long as they weren’t wounded on purpose
- drag hunting and trail hunting
If you witness either of these the grey areas is this 999 call or is this 101 call if you believe people are not being directly threatened? If they were of course it would definitely be a 999.
Both Merseyside and Cheshire Police are consistent in their advice on this it is your judgement. Generally if public safety is (in your judgement) at risk them it is a 999 call. Otherwise a 101. An example given by the officers we spoke to is if the weapon was being fired close to the public this would be a 999 call. Don’t put yourself in danger report the offence while ensuring your safety from a distance. We all carry mobiles these days.
101 dial is the new police number for non emergencies
Option 1 for Cheshire
Option 2 for Greater Manchester
Option 3 for Merseyside
Greater Manchester Police Wildlife Liasion Officer
Andy Mc Willian 07884 116585
Merseyside Police Wildlife Liasion Officer
Cheshire Police Crime Prevention Officer (Warrington & Halton)
Merseyside Police Crime Prevention
0151 777 6047
Merseyside Police General Enquiries
0151 709 6010
Firearms Licensing General Enquiries (Not for incidents)
01606 362084 HQ Winsford
Lancashire Wildlife Trust
Highfield Moss is now under a management plan by Lancashire Wildlife Trust
For issues relating to conservation on the Highfield Moss SSSI.
Mark Champion, Wigan Projects Manager
Wigan MBC – Open Space Management
For litter anti social misuse etc
DOGS IN SPRING EARLY SUMMER
If you have a dog please keep it under control especially in the spring. It may seem harmless to let your dog bound through undergrowth but this may be home to nesting birds or animals with young who may desert their young as a consequence. Most times its fine but it’s just a question of being aware of these things at certain times of the year and commonsense. Thanks.