Written by Olivia Bell
Councillors backed a motion to condemn the killings of 16 red kites
THE mass poisoning of birds of prey on the Black Isle is causing people to cancel their holidays to the Highlands, it was claimed yesterday.
The assertion was made as Highland Council unanimously backed a motion condemning the killing of 16 red kites and six buzzards.
"I have heard that some people are cancelling their holidays because of this," Inverness South councillor Thomas Prag told the meeting. "It is terrible it is having an impact on the image people have of the area."
Leaders of the four main political groupings signed the motion, which highlighted the illegal killings and supported efforts to catch the culprits.
Councillor Jim Crawford lodged an amendment to defer a vote until the council had more information about the number of dead birds which had been poisoned, and with what substance, but he failed to get a seconder.
Earlier this week during a debate on wildlife crime in the Scottish Parliament, environment minister Paul Wheelhouse called for punishments substantial enough to act as a deterrent to others.