Deterring birds from nesting to prevent them interfering with planned construction projects became a controversial issue last year with developers across the country accused of unethical behaviour when they put nets over trees.

Now the HS2 construction project is using captive birds of prey, seemingly to keep birds from nesting in an ancient woodland that lies in the path of the proposed railway.

Conservationists say that while legal, the technique is ineffective and immoral.

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