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Moobli
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17-11-2016, 10:34 AM

Livestock Guardian Dogs

Could Livestock Guardian Dogs ever be a part of the UK's rural areas and countryside as they are in Europe and further afield?

If lynx, wolves and other apex predators are to be reintroduced (and that is of course far from a foregone conclusion) then perhaps LGDs are the only way that man and wolves (for example) could live peaceably side by side.

Would you welcome large carnivores in the countryside? Also shepherds and farmers owning LGDs would have to bring a change in legislation regarding the DDA, which would have other implications.

The film below shows tourists how to react on the mountain pastures in front of guardian dogs.

This film shows to the tourists how to react on the mountain pastures in front of the guardian dogs.

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Moobli
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18-11-2016, 09:36 AM
No one has an opinion on this?
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chlosmum
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18-11-2016, 09:47 AM
Originally Posted by Moobli View Post
No one has an opinion on this?
Yes I have, but haven't had time to pen a reply! Will try and do it later today.
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Moobli
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18-11-2016, 11:15 AM
Originally Posted by chlosmum View Post
Yes I have, but haven't had time to pen a reply! Will try and do it later today.
Great Would I be right in thinking you have LGDs in Hungary protecting the flocks?
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gordon mac
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19-11-2016, 12:41 AM
Rightly or wrongly - I dismissed this as a bit of a flight of fantasy. Not meaning that in a derogatory sense.
Short of some nutcase letting apex predators loose in some distant part of bonnie Scotland (for this is the only place with so few inhabitants as to make it plausible) I just can't see it happening.
Many people think Saddleworth Moor wild - but when you consider that large carnivores cover vast territories - in half a night they could be in the centre of Huddersfield or Manchester. If they ventured into Oldham Town Centre they'd probably get eaten by the locals. So black humour apart it wouldn't be viable in places like here.
LGD's do an excellent job in places with huge unpopulated areas or where stock is in jeapoardy from AP's but I don't consider it viable in the majority of the UK.
Wolf or Lynx are welcome to wander around my place - the Mem could do with a new coat! Joking as even I think the fur looks better on the animals.
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Moobli
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19-11-2016, 11:56 AM
I do tend to agree with you Gordon - in that I cannot see wolves ever making a return to the UK. In some respects I would welcome it as I think they are beautiful, fascinating creatures who could help keep the burgeoning population of red deer under control as well as providing other benefits, but sadly I would hate the thought of them being persecuted when coming into contact with man and livestock - and there just isn't enough room on our overcrowded island to avoid that happening on a regular basis without high fences everywhere, and then what would be the point?

However, the reintroduction of lynx does seem like a more likely prospect.

""The Iberian lynx project has been incredibly successful and we hope to emulate that in the UK," says Dr Paul O'Donoghue, an adviser to the International Union for Conservation of Nature cat specialist group.
While the UK could support hundreds of lynx, he says, the Lynx UK Trust aims to start with a five-year pilot project that will see the release of three male and three female animals of breeding age from Romania.
Any offspring will be "the first lynx born in the UK for 1,300 years" he says - an estimate based on carbon-dating of lynx skeletons. "It's incredibly exciting."
In July the Trust will apply for a licence for a single unfenced site in one of five locations in Cumbria, Norfolk, Northumberland, Argyll and Aberdeenshire. This could see the lynx released as soon as the autumn, though it may take longer to persuade people in the community that they do not present a threat."
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Moobli
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19-11-2016, 11:58 AM
I believe, from what I have read, that Kielder Forest in Northumberland is a preferred site.
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tawneywolf
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19-11-2016, 03:13 PM
I would love to see Livestock Guardian Dogs, but I think there are too many idiots that would put the dogs at risk. Before you know it there would be people claiming they'd been attacked, when all that happened would the dogs would have done their job and barked at them when they came too close, and all downhill from there really.
Wolves would be lovely, and in America they are making it work with some of the ranchers who are open minded and willing to tolerate wolves living their lives nearby. Most of them are just interested in killing them. Wolves redressed the balance in Yellowstone Park and kept the deer population under control and then the trees that had hitherto been destroyed by deer grew back, then the beaver and other indiginous species reappeared, rivers and waterways became alive once more, all because of the wolf.
Shame it can't happen here because of the understandable opposition, it could work but only if everyone played a positive role in the scheme.
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Moobli
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19-11-2016, 03:55 PM
You have seen this too Tawney?


Amazing isn't it?

I completely agree with you. I think our lifestyles in the UK are so different to those in rural Europe that for wolves to be reintroduced and for LGDs to be seen on our hillsides would mean many people have to have a rather large shift in the way they think.
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tawneywolf
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19-11-2016, 05:09 PM
There was a documentary about it that I watched, and it is incredible that you take just one main predator out of the food chain and the rest goes to pot. Man has a lot to answer for.
People don't think anymore, thats the problem in a nutshell.
Little Johnny would be encouraged to go and stroke the 'nice doggies' who would then strongly discourage his approach. Cue cries of Dangerous Dogs and the rest you can guess
If people can't even close a gate behind them, keep their dogs onlead around livestock and not understand the sheer stupidity of driving up behind a horse and beeping their horn then there is little chance of them taking notice of warning signs about Livestock Guardians
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