On yesterday’s Countryfile programme: Richard Ali, Chief Executive of BASC (c15mins 30secs into the programme):
‘...it’s not an enjoyment based on killing, it’s an enjoyment to respect the countryside. Shooting is about not just the history of Britain, it’s about an innovative future.’
Although it was delivered with an earnest tone and a deeply serious demeanour, that was a pretty incoherent answer to the point that some people will just regard killing wildlife for pleasure as simply wrong.
I feel some sympathy for Richard here – I’d struggle to explain why I am mad keen on watching wildlife, but I think I’d do better on that subject than he did on explaining why some are mad keen on gunning it down.
Shooting living targets is not how I would spend my leisure time, nor is it the way I would ‘respect the countryside’, but, to a large extent, each to his own. And yet the overall impact of one particular form of game-shooting, driven grouse shooting, is negative for wildlife populations and for landscape, on the whole, said the RSPB in the same programme.
That’s why, allied to the deeply intransigent attitude of grouse shooting to the negative impacts of their ‘respect’ of the countryside, I believe we should ban driven grouse shooting – that is a truly innovative future. If you agree, then please sign this e-petition to ban driven grouse shooting.