Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Drafting a letter to King’s management, the students write: “From a moral standpoint, we believe that geese have intrinsic value and therefore deserve a life free from suffering and human exploitation.”Geese experience pain, enjoy the benefits of a social lifestyle, and exhibit advanced intelligence in their ability to navigate vast distances on their migratory routes.”Citing Mahatma Gandhi, the students add that “the greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”We are aware of how fortunate we are to be members of King’s and how with this membership comes the responsibility of holding each other to high standards of conduct, respect, and dignity,” they add. Although the college insists it is not planning a cull, students claim the suggestion was made during a recent board meeting. Following the backlash, management now say the birds will be “moved” if other solutions cannot be found.The row is not the first to have played out in Cambridge over Canada geese; in 2003, St John’s College was criticised by animal rights campaigners when it announced that was taking steps to “reduce the population”. One of Cambridge University’s most prestigious colleges has provoked a backlash from students amid fears that the “sentient” Canadian geese living within its grounds might be culled – because their excrement has become a safety hazard.Having settled close to King’s College on the banks of the River Cam, the gaggle has been labelled a health and safety risk by staff, who warn that their droppings have made the college pathways dangerous and unsightly.Whilst the college is using a variety of measures to deter the birds from returning – including netting over the river and laser pens – the geese have so far remained anchored to their favourite resting spot.Concerned that the birds may be killed should current efforts fail, hundreds of students have signed a petition presented to the college council urging them to protect the “sentient beings”, on the grounds that a cull would amount to “animal cruelty”. Commenting on the dispute, a King’s spokesman said: “Canada geese are a non-native species, and we have received many complaints that their growing numbers are causing the paths at the College to become slippery and unattractive.”The College has used a variety of non-harmful measures to deter the geese, and will continue to do so. If these measures prove unsuccessful we would consider moving the geese from King’s.”First brought to Britain from North America in 1665 by Charles II in a bid to increase the diversity of wildlife on show in St James’s Park, skeins of Canada geese have since spread across the country.Whilst the UK does receive a small number of migrating birds every winter, the vast majority are descendants of 17th century imports, and remain in residence all year round.However, the birds are seen by many as a pest; they have been known to produce droppings every 40 seconds, which contain many strands of bacteria that can cause serious illnesses including gastroenteritis. Whilst students acknowledge that the geese are problematic – germs in their faeces are often resistant to antibiotics and can cause serious illness- they suggest that King’s instead resorts to audio and non-toxic chemical deterrents.
uyjagtaa By admin on September 25, 2019