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We banned it from paint petrol and pipes but allow it to enter the human food chain - find out why it's time to ban lead shot

Sacha Dench joins Dr Julia Newth from WWT, John Gregson from Waitrose and Dr Niels Kanstrup from the Danish Hunters Association on the eve of an historic EU vote to finally ban the use of lead in shot and so stop the annual killing of 1 million wild birds in Europe and the dumping of 20,000 tonnes of poisonous lead shot across the fields on England. Hunters and conservationists are joining forces to put pressure on ammunition manufacturers and the government to implement a ban and use a safe alternative.
(Photo credit: WWT)

Our guests:

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Sacha Dench, an old friend of Planet Pod, is known to many as the Human Swan, famous for her flight along the migratory path of the Bewick Swan by paramotor from Arctic Russia to the wetlands of Slimbridge. Recently Sacha was appointed as UN Ambassador for Migratory Species, and although the pandemic halted her plans to Fly with Ospreys this summer nothing stops her in her tracks for long.

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Dr Julia Newth is Ecosystem Health & Social Dimensions Manager at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust at Slimbridge,  where she uses a holistic approach to examine the ecological and human dimensions of complex conservation issues that affect wetland wildlife, and seeks to design and implement appropriate solutions to bridge research, policy and public platforms. Julia works directly with hunters and uses methods from the social sciences to understand their perspectives on the use of lead and non-lead ammunition.

Throughout his career, he has focused on the sustainability of hunting, particularly the issue of lead in hunting ammunition both as an advisor and scientist – he also a keen hunter

 

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Dr Niels Kanstrup is a wildlife biologist, scientist and hunter. He has worked with the Danish Hunters’ Association, been the President of the CIC Migratory Bird Commission and Member of the AEWA Technical Committee. As well as working as a freelance wildlife and nature adviser he is Adjunct Senior Scientists at Aarhus University

Throughout his career, he has focused on the sustainability of hunting, particularly the issue of lead in hunting ammunition both as an advisor and scientist – he also a keen hunter

 

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John Gregson began his journalism career as editor of the Shooting Times, and after working in agriculture and public affairs he moved to Waitrose in 1999 where he has held a variety of communications and corporate responsibility roles.

He has been involved in the lead debate since the early 1990s, first as a sceptic and now as a passionate advocate for change to non toxic alternatives. He was one of the people behind the Waitrose non lead policy and is puzzled by the reticent attitude of some in the shooting sports to face the facts around lead shot.

See WWT’s briefing + video about tackling the issue of lead ammunition poisoning here

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