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Birds in Britain face challenge from EU farm cuts

Posted on Nov 19, 10:17AM | IANS

Some of Britain's most-loved birds are facing a catastrophic threat in the wake of the European Union's (EU) plans to reduce wildlife-friendly farm subsidies.

As Brussels is seeking to impose swingeing cuts on vital countryside schemes that help farmers provide a lifeline for birds like the linnet, skylark and turtle dove, their future looks increasingly bleak, Daily Express reported.

EU president Herman van Rompuy wants a 10 per cent cut in environmental subsidies.

British Prime Minister David Cameron will be meeting his European counterparts in Brussels Thursday, with conservation organisations such as the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) urging him to get more money from the EU to invest in the countryside.

Martin Harper, the RSPB's director of conservation, said: "It is outrageous news that president Rompuy is asking EU leaders to cut the largest single budget for wildlife conservation in the UK.

"We wanted to know what cuts to this budget might mean for wildlife-friendly farmers and I think the results of this survey are loud and clear : it would be a disaster."