DNA Testing Helps Catch Deer Poachers.
Britain’s poaching is on the rise
With the current economic downturn in Britain poaching is on the rise, especially so in Cumbria which, according to the National Wildlife Crime Unit, has taken the poaching hotspot title from Scotland.
Wildlife crime officer John Baldwin stated "Evidence does show that compared to the same period last year, poaching from August to date has increased,” he also said "Poaching figures do increase in the run up to Christmas and it could be to do with costs. On the black market poachers may be looking at a pound in cash for a pound in weight, meaning that from just one carcass they could make £200-300."
As research into DNA testing advances the techniques for tests such as Paternity and Relationship testing are being altered and enhanced to help prevent crime.
The new strategy for finding these poachers involves taking DNA samples from the Deer carcasses left on the side of the road with the aim of finding DNA left by the poachers as they drag the deer from the fields to their vehicles.
Baldwin said "The new technique is something we would consider on a case by case basis. We haven't sent off any DNA samples yet but potentially it could be quite an effective tool in the future."
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