MCS joins willdife groups calling for ban on propellers that cause fatal 'corkscrew' injuries

Richard Harrington By: Richard Harrington
Date posted: 26 February 2014

MCS joins willdife groups calling for ban on propellers that cause fatal ‘corkscrew’ injuries MCS Scotland Programme Manager, Calum Duncan, says the Scottish Government must be more pro-active in trying to prevent fatal injuries to seals and porpoises where the animals bodies are sliced up ‘corkscrew’ style.

MCS joins willdife groups calling for ban on propellers that cause fatal ‘corkscrew’ injuries MCS Scotland Programme Manager, Calum Duncan, says the Scottish Government must be more pro-active in trying to prevent fatal injuries to seals and porpoises where the animals bodies are sliced up ‘corkscrew’ style. MCS, along wtih 13 other wildlife including the Whale and Dolphin Conservation and the Wildlife Trusts, have urged ministers at Westminster and at Holyrood to put immediate restrictions on propellers in areas where harbour seals live. “Further research is supported and welcome, but if the Scottish Government is not more pro-active at seeking to prevent these specific types of injury to seals from declining populations, they risk failing their commitments under the EU Habitats Directive. Along with other organisations, we are therefore recommending the restriction of use of all propellers, other than those known not to cause the relevant injuries, in areas where those injuries have been recorded at the most significant levels, Ø said Calum. In a letter the groups said they strongly urged the UK and Scottish Governments to act on the best available evidence which is that certain kinds of ducted propellers kill and injure marine mammals. The group said they wanted to see a restrcition on the use of all ducted propellers, other than those known not to cause the relevant injuries in areas where injuries have been recorded at the most significant levels and where seal populations appear to be worst affected by these injuries, and especially in the vicinity of the Firth of Tay and Eden Estuary SAC, with immediate effect. The wildlife groups also urged an introduction of policies to limit the use of all ducted propellers, other than those known not to cause therelevant injuries to marine mammals, providing explicit guidance for all vessel skippers, with the aim of minimising ducted propeller use (where an anchor could be used instead, for example) in the vicinity of SACs.

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