Fury over Cambridge students killing ducks in rowing race

Fury over Cambridge students killing ducks in rowing race

Cambridge University rowers have been accused of killing ducklings during an annual race known as the May Bumps.

The Independent reports that the May Bumps are a series of rowing races held each year on the River Cam. They take their name from their unusual format: if a boat bumps into the rear of a competitor, the boat in front must pull over and let them pass.

Last year, animal rights protestors dressed as swans brought the race to a halt. And this year, a houseboat resident, Lee Culley, claims that a female team's rowing blades struck a brood of ducks, killing at least two of them.

He said: "It was absolutely disgusting. They just sped through them even though I shouted to them, warning them about the ducks.

"They just kept on going and their blades went through the ducks and killed two. The ducks were only three weeks old. Another one died the next day and the mother has none but keeps coming back to my boat looking for the brood."

He told the Daily Mail: "I am worried about the other wildlife. We just don't have that much of it left on the river because there are just too many rowers."

Cambridge University Combined Boat clubs, which runs the event, insists that they work hard to protect wildlife on the river.

A spokesperson said: "Every effort is being made to mitigate disturbance to wildlife and to keep ducks and other waterfoul out of the way of racing boats. We are very sorry to hear of the incident Mr Culley apparently witnessed and will be briefing stewards to be extra vigilant."

Click on the image below for ten of the best waterside hotels...

Ten of the best (alternative) waterside hotels
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Fury over Cambridge students killing ducks in rowing race

Safari in style at the Eagle Island Camp, which is set in the Okavango Delta on the remote Xaxaba Island among waterways, vegetation and overlooking a lagoon where you can spot exotic birds and big game stopping for a drink of water. The Camp encourages you to enjoy the surrounding water with the Fish Eagle Bar perfectly located so you can watch the sun set over the Okavango Delta. The luxury tents you'll sleep in are housed on raised wooden platforms so you won’t miss an animal sighting and you'll have the opportunity to explore the area by local canoe.

Room with a view: The Suite and Pels Fishing Owl tents boast spectacular views of the Okavanga Delta. From $1,845 per person, per night including return flights to Maun. Visit eagleislandcamp.com

Check into this luxury design hotel located on the edge of Venice's infamous Grand Canal for an exclusive and extravagant stay in the historic city. The hotel has a private dock for you to arrive in style via gondola or boat, where you'll be met by the bellman and if you decide to leave the hotel to venture out into the city, a water transfer service is at your disposal!

Room with a view: The Grand Canal Junior Suite has three large windows for you to enjoy breathtaking views of the Grand Canal. From €480 per night. Visit palazzobarbarigo.com

Stay at this unique hotel in Alberta's Banff National Park, which has the beautiful Lake Louise at its foot for a memorable waterside break. In summer the lake is turquoise blue and winter sees it freeze over. If you're into sports, the annual Lake Louise Pond Hockey Classic is an event you won't want to miss and if you just want to relax with a drink and a good view, the Lakeview Lounge overlooks Lake Louise and beyond.

Room with a view: Check into a Fairmont Lake View room for fantastic views of Lake Louise. From $329 per night. Visit fairmont.com/lakelouise

A stay at this lakeside hotel is luxurious before you even reach its doors! You'll make an enchanting entrance by boat through Lake Pichola in Udaipur. Inside, you can dine in restaurants with the lake in view or if you're feeling adventurous, have a picnic on a private gondola on the lake itself. Even the spa has Lake Pichola in mind as the the suites are serenely set with spectacular views to benefit your spiritual wellbeing while you're being pampered!

Room with a view: Book a Premier Room for a good view of Lake Pichola. £553 per night. Visit oberoihotels.com

It’s the only hotel located within the Iguassu National Park and is just a stones throw away from the magnificent Iguassu Falls. As a guest you can enjoy exclusive access to the waterfall when the park closes, take to the waters with white water rafting and fly over the gorge of this natural paradise in a helicopter.

Room with a view: The Suite Cataratas has full views of the Argentinean side of Iguassu Falls. From $525 per room, per night. Visit hoteldascataratas.com

The recently opened Canal House in Amsterdam is a boutique bolthole for cool and trendy guests looking for the perfect base along one of the cities most notable canals. It overlooks the Keizersgracht canal and has traditional Dutch paintings, ornate fireplaces and high ceilings gracing its interior. Hire a bike to enjoy the canal views throughout the day.

Room with a view: The Best Room (number 23) overlooks the canal with magnificent views through the tree tops. €660 per night. Visit canalhouse.nl

Fancy staying on your own private island in the middle of a lake? Jicaro Island Ecolodge is set on the largest freshwater lake in Central America, Lake Nicaragua. The nine casitas at this eco retreat give it an exclusive feel and they all boast views across the lake so you won’t need to miss out on the water for a second! The casitas and the furniture inside are made from Rainforest Alliance certified wood and you can soak up the surroundings from a hammock or the pool, swim in the lake and even enjoy dining on Lake Nicaragua on a floating deck – perfect for a romantic candlelit dinner!

Room with a view: Each of the nine casitas boast lake views from the private island. £118 per person, per night. Visit jicarolodge.com

This elegant boutique hotel on Istanbul’s Asian side overlooks the Bosphorus Strait and is one of the city’s top places to get a good waterside view. All the bedrooms have magnificent views of the Bosphorus, you can dine and drink at the Waterfront Terrace Restaurant and even take to the water with Sumahan’s complimentary transfers across the Bosphorus!

Room with a view: Each of the 20 rooms and suites overlook the Bosphorus. From €195 per night for a deluxe room.

Southern Spain isn’t the first place you think of for a lakeside break but at this stylish farmhouse B&B in the Andalusian village of Iznajar, you can bask in the sunshine and rural surroundings with olive groves and the Iznajar Lake. The lake provides drinking water to Seville so motorised boats are prohibited, making it untouched by tourists. Each of the five rooms are named after different types of olive trees.

Room with a view: The Hojiblanco Room has access to the hotel's terrace and overlooks olive groves and the lake. €96 per night. Visit casaruralelolivar.com

This oasis in Chiang Mai is set in a tropical forest, which stays green all year round thanks to the cascades that run on the edges of the resort. Spa lovers can enjoy rejuvenating treatments at the retreat before relaxing waterside with a refreshing drink and dining with the stunning waterfall at your side. You can even take a yoga lesson overlooking the waterfall.

Room with a view: The Suite Pool Villa has the best views of the waterfall. 18,000 THB (£363) per night. Visit sukantara.com


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