I’m a bit busy right now to type up a full response, but this article from a few years ago is a good one.
I will say the following though. There are various myths about the greys not backed by scientific fact.
The myths are that greys spread pox which kills reds…only 2% of reds die of this, and many are near artificial feeding stations where reds gather…so it is passed from red to red. sexual contact is way it is spread, yet greys don’t mate with reds.
Road accidents account for 53% in past 25 years of research, so prohibiting cars is better than culling greys, but of course selfish humans won’t do that.
Another myth is that greys being larger stronger etc. eat all the food…again not true, their diets are actually quite different.
How about song bird populations? Natural England Trust for ornithology carried out research and concluded there is negligible detriment, and in the 70s reds were also demonised due to this.
Destruction of trees. Yes in times of hunger greys can damage trees, but the scale has been exaggerated on purpose. In fact greys are the world’s biggest forest regenerators.
Like I said, you have your science and I have mine, but we remain convinced of our own truth. But I think between us we’ve contributed enough info for Huelers to investigate themselves if desired, and clearly Huel appeals to people on either side of this kinda small fence.
One final thing. Human activities have accounted for over 60% of red squirrel deaths in past 25 years…and we wanna cull the scapegoated greys. Humans just love killing things…seagulls, urban foxes, grey squirrels, pigeons…we cause the problems and only see fit in dealing with our actions with killing them… Kinda sucks…
WE upset the balance of an ecosystem. Completely and truly screw pretty much every eco system up.
The fact that grey squirrels are flourishing, and others dwindling, doesn’t mean it’s a problem. It’s upsetting OUR idealistic view of what it should be, when in fact their dominance is still just natural selection at play, whether we instigated it or not.
It’s not idealism, we are not appealing to an idealistic view of the woods, where only British red squirrels eat pure British oak acorns in some idyllic bygone ‘natural native woods age’, its based off the observation that grey squirrels upset the ecosystem, destroy young tree growth and hamper the biodiversity of woodlands (adversely affecting other species such as butterflies, fungi etc). If its not a problem that foreign species upset ecosystems why don’t we just introduce rhododendron everywhere so it can smother all other forms of life? I draw my ‘ethical good’ from the preservation of biospheres and species of life over the health or pain of a single life form.
Besides if your argument is that’s its natural selection then why shouldn’t we the dominant species due to natural selection, just kill off anything that disagrees with us?
And using squirrels for a meat source is actually saving money while at the same time ‘protecting an endangered species’. I’m not a supporter of a cull for the sake of saving a species, but I would support any system that uses its available resources (abundant forms of wildlife) while also increasing biodiversity.
But as an interesting point do you not think we should take responsibility for our impact on the environment? If we messed with the balance of the ecosystem is it not our responsibility to take steps where possible to repair it?
Also have you ever noticed in a mono-culture plantation of coniferous forest how quiet it is? That’s because almost no other forms of life can survive, due to the lack of diversity in the different ecosystems.
Also going back to the original point of this thread, I would like to hear your thoughts on locality as being a sustainable model, my advocation of locally sourced products to cut down on food miles wasn’t meant to suggest we spend tonnes of energy growing food in unsuited climates, I just think that Huel’s commitment to sustainability would be greatly improved if we had some transparency at the level of crop production. Also this is a good article about food miles versus specialization for high-yields.