About Us

The Veterinary Association for Wildlife Management (VAWM) is a membership organization for veterinary surgeons in the UK with an interest in effective and humane wildlife management. Its members include practitioners, academics, and vets in industry.

VAWM’s objectives are to promote the management of British wildlife, by methods which are advantageous for animal welfare, to protect: biodiversity and vulnerable species, the health and welfare of livestock and pets, the livelihoods of farmers and other guardians of the physical environment, and also public health.

The Association publishes two newsletters a year and holds its Annual General Meeting and dinner in the autumn. Information on how to support VAWM can be found here.

Pine Martens-VAWM website

Meet the VAWM Committee

  • D. J. Renney, BVetMed, MRCVS

    Chairman

    David Renney

    David Renney graduated from the Royal Veterinary College of the University of London. He worked in mixed practice in Northamptonshire, then entered the veterinary pharmaceutical industry as a veterinary adviser. He founded Nimrod Veterinary Products in 2007 and is the company’s Managing Director.

    His professional interests are large-animal medicine and gut health in poultry, and he gives lectures on these subjects to veterinary and farming audiences. He has a small farm in Warwickshire managed for improvement of wildlife habitats.

  • Aoife Byrne, DrMedVet, CertAVP, MRCVS

    Secretary

    Aoife Byrne

    Aoife Byrne is from Ireland, but studied veterinary medicine in Budapest, Hungary graduating in 2007. After completing an internship at an equine hospital in Ireland, she worked for a further year in a busy mixed practice, where her duties included testing cattle for TB and advising farmers on how to manage the threat to the health of their herd. She then developed expertise in equine embryo transfer, first in Argentina, then at a specialist centre in Gloucestershire. She next took an ambulatory equine role in an equine practice with a special interest in ophthalmology.

    Aoife then worked at a large equine practice covering the South West of England for 2 years before making the decision to return home to Ireland in 2021 to establish Bakonyi & Byrne Equine Vets with her husband Peter. She became Secretary of the Veterinary Association for Wildlife Management in 2021.

  • Richard Greenwood, MA VetMB, MRCVS

    Treasurer

    Richard Greenwood

    Richard Greenwood qualified as a veterinary surgeon from Cambridge University.

    After three years in general practice, he started to specialise in equine work, particularly with thoroughbreds, first in Australia and then in Newmarket, becoming senior partner in the practice which developed into the Newmarket Equine Hospital.

    He became treasurer of VAWM at its inception, and has now retired from practice.

  • Jim Barrington,

    Press Officer

    Jim Barrington

    Jim Barrington is a former Executive Director of the League Against Cruel Sports and has been involved in various animal-welfare campaigns for over 40 years.

    He has worked with the Veterinary Association for Wildlife Management almost since its inception, dealing mainly with the publicity aspects of the organisation, as well as work within the political field.

    He is currently a welfare consultant to the Countryside Alliance and Council of Hunting Associations.

  • Louisa Cheape, BVSc, MRCVS

    Committee Member

    Louisa Cheape read Physiology at Edinburgh University and Veterinary Science at Liverpool University. She works in a traditional mixed practice in Cupar, and helps her husband to run their mixed farm. They have recently converted to an organic and regenerative system, having developed a deep interest in farming alongside nature, restoring the soil and biodiversity, at the same time producing nutrient-dense beef, lamb, pork, eggs, and vegetables for the local market.

    Louisa is passionate about the need for veterinary surgeons to convey the balanced and science-based information that has often been so lacking from policy making in recent times.

  • Liz Rhys-Jones, BVM&S, MRCVS

    Committee Member

    Liz Rhys-Jones

    Liz Rhys-Jones graduated in 1972 from the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies. She worked in practice on the North Yorkshire Moors from 1972 to 2012, largely doing farm work, including TB testing, which occupied most of her last 10 years in practice.

    Liz has been a member of the Veterinary Association for Wildlife Management since its inception.

  • David Walker, BVetMed, CertSAO, MRCVS

    Committee Member

    David Walker recently retired after 41 years in veterinary profession. For the majority of his career his practice was in Warwickshire, where clinical work included farm animal, horses, and pet animals, and providing professional services to several UK animal charities.

    His interests are centred on the broader and diverse issues of animal welfare and particularly the effects of climate change.

  • Jane Wighton, BVMS, MRCVS

    Committee Member

    Jane Wighton is from a Yorkshire farming family and graduated as a vet from Glasgow University. She has worked in mixed practices, but has recently concentrated on small-animal work.

    Jane has an interest in working dogs, and has also looked after birds of prey. She has provided veterinary care to the Kimblewick hounds for many seasons.