Cruelty to birds

I read with interest John F Robins’ letter (30 March). I have long wondered how it can be legal to raise non-native birds in captivity and then release them into the wild.

These immature birds, such as pheasants, are then vulnerable to attack by foxes, dogs and cats and become a danger to drivers when large groups of them congregate at the roadside.

A gamekeeper once told me they have “suicide” written on their foreheads.

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They are then enticed to stay in a particular area by being provided with grain, only to find that men with dogs and sticks come along to terrify them into flight so that they can be shot at in what is called sport.

Those that are not killed outright are then terrified even further as they are picked up by dogs before their necks are wrung which at least puts them out of their pain and suffering.

Those that do survive the shooting season then find that the supply of grain on which they have come to depend dries up and they are left to fend for themselves.

If anyone else were to treat animals in the same manner they would fall foul of various animal welfare laws.

Susan Gray

By Johnshaven