Nine reasons to oppose grouse shooting
- Killing birds for sport is cruel and uncivilised.
- A large number of native birds and mammals who are perceived to interfere with grouse shooting are trapped, poisoned or snared. Victims include stoats, weasels, and even iconic raptors such as hen harriers, red kites and golden eagles.
- An unnatural, heather-rich environment is created because the grouse thrive on young heather shoots. To create fresh young shoots, the heather is burned, which can harm wildlife and damage the environment.
- The Committee on Climate Change has recently put a figure on the damage. Some 350,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide each year is emitted from upland peat in England, it noted,the majority of which (260,000 tonnes) is from areas that are being rotationally burnt.
- The harsh ‘management’ of moorlands causes grouse numbers to boom. But as they overburden the landscape, they become weakened and fall prey to a lethal parasite – Strongylosis. This attacks the gut and leads to a collapse in the population.
- A cycle of population boom and bust is the norm on Britain’s grouse moors.
- Large quantities of lead shot are discharged, which is toxic to wildlife.
- Grouse shooting estates use the Countryside and Rights of Way Act to restrict public access to mountain and moorland.
- Grouse shoot operators – whose well-heeled clients can each pay more than £3,000 for a single day’s shooting – receive millions of pounds annually from the taxpayer via the Common Agricultural Policy.
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