Turtle Doves Are Facing Extinction in the UK and the EU Is Taking Legal Action to Stop It

By Shabana Arif on at

To preserve the integrity of Christmas Carollers everywhere, the EU is taking measures to preserve the waning turtle dove population, because you can't sing about gifting it to your true love when there's none of the bloody things left.

BirdLife International has listed the species as vulnerable in England, saying that they're "on life support" and could be extinct in this country by 2021 unless Europe pulls its thumb out of its arse.

The European commission isn't messing around either, naming and shaming France and Spain for not having sufficiently protected the birds from losing their habitat, or from hunting during their migration to their northern European breeding grounds.

Legal action is being taken against the two countries, and both are being issued with warnings of breaching the wild bird's conservation directive. England isn't getting a telling off just yet as conservationists haven't petitioned Brussels for a warning to the UK government because who knows where we'll be in a few months with regards to Brexit.

"The turtle dove is an iconic species that was providing the soundtrack of spring since the times of the Bible’s Song of Songs. But it is now racing to extinction because of unsustainable agriculture and hunting," said BirdLife International's senior head of policy, Ariel Brunner.

Brunner was also pretty pleased that Brussel's letter to France and Spain acknowledged the part that farming has had to play in destroying the birds' habitat.

Feature image credit: harum.koh on Flickr