Progress on reducing the depredations caused by illegal metal detecting is slow but this week in Lincolnshire there’s good news. Police are evaluating drones with a view to deploying them county-wide in the fight against “rural crime”. That term covers some of Britain’s grubbiest activities – theft of farm equipment and livestock, arson, poaching, dog fighting, fly tipping, hare coursing, and of course nighthawking.

The sooner drones are acquired by every police authority the better. Soon, stealing archaeological artefacts from archaeological sites or open farmland  under cover of darkness is going to become far more risky..

Soon darkness won’t provide cover

Of course, as we’ve always stressed, nighthawking is dwarfed by broad daylight losses due to non-disclosure by legal detectorists. (As a detectorist on a forum revealed, when he showed some finds to a farmer he got the response: “Do you know, I’ve had about 16 detectorists on that field over the past twenty years, and not ONE has showed me a thing. I thought they weren’t finding anything“). Nevertheless, seriously reducing nighthawking through deploying drones is a very welcome start.

.
__________________________________________

.
.
__________________________________________