Bedfordshire hares saved for now as Cranfield Airport calls off tomorrow’s cull


AIRPORT bosses have cancelled a planned cull of hares due to take place tomorrow after it was felt they should carry out a study of the animals first.

Tomorrow Cranfield Airport had planned to undertake a shooting of hares and rabbits on scrubland south of the site involving four qualified personnel carrying firearms.

The cull was going to be undertaken following a crash between a light aircraft and a muntjac deer as the plane was coming in to land on the runway on December 16 last year.

However, this afternoon, management at Cranfield University, which owns the Airport, decided to call off the cull at the last minute after wildlife campaigners raised concerns that the proposed cull could seriously damage the numbers of hares in Bedfordshire.

A spokeswoman from the University said: “The airport has confirmed there will now not be any shooting during this operation. The University has also requested the airport to carry out a further study of the safety risks and population dynamics of brown hare at Cranfield Airport. The airport has confirmed that an independent study will be carried out and any appropriate action will be based on the recommendations of the report.”

Staff at the University had raised concerns about the planned killing after receiving notice from bosses telling them from Wednesday there would be machinery operating on the south side of the airport clearing the overgrown scrub area, which is anticipated to last up to three days, including a’controlled cull of the excessive hare and rabbit population’ within that area.

http://www.bedfordshire-news.co.uk/News/UPDATE-Bedfordshire-hares-saved-for-now-as-Cranfield-Airport-calls-off-tomorrows-cull-20140128153000.htm

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