Severe adder disturbance in northern counties

After a visit to one of the few adder sites left in my local area on Saturday I made the following post on my Facebook page which I thought I would share here too.

I have since been informed that several of the three to four different photography groups have shared the location of these particular adders on their Facebook pages and websites. This is the single biggest contributor to the huge increase in adder disturbance.

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By Matt Wilson

8 comments on “Severe adder disturbance in northern counties

  1. Good post, Matt, and you are absolutely right. As a photographer myself I have always worked on the principle that the animal is more important than the picture. These selfish people are obviously not “naturalists”.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Chris. In recent years I have seen a big increase in wildlife photographers who seemingly do not consider the well-being of their subjects at all. Really quite worrying but there is little that can be done other than offer some wise words. But that only works if the individuals concerned have a conscience!

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  2. I agree Matt. Photographers are not happy unless they are moving or chasing something. We even have them asking what they have just taken a photo of.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This sounds very grim. I’d consider use of litter pickers to be illegal and the harassment to be border-line disturbance. Do you think there is any scope for the local ARG group/other volunteers to ‘warden’ the site and provide information about adders and ensuring there is no disturbance? Also, if the photography clubs are known then they could be appealed to. Which local authority is the site in?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Hugh, with the site I’m referring to here it appears that groups like the RSPB are telling people exactly where to find the adders at meetings etc. Then, the site is spread through social media as people are too careless in giving details. I doubt the same would be happening if it was a hen harrier nest..

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  4. Well said Matt. It reminds me of “Twitching” which because of todays efficient communications, can cause a rarity to be mobbed by people, as I saw at Spurn once, when a bush with a Radde’s Warbler in it was completely ringed by humans, shoulder to shoulder.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well Steve, the majority of these people seem to be keen birders who are used to twitching and the activities associated with it. However, adders, unlike birds can’t fly away when one of the photographers get too close or picks it up and puts it in a cool box to make photography easier.

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