What they say 7:

From: Hen Harriers: your essential brief by the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust:

Q: Is discussion of a ban on driven grouse shooting simplistic?
A: Yes. Firstly, it ignores the wider conservation, employment and economic benefits of moorland managed for grouse; and secondly, it fails to address why there are so few hen harriers on the 50% of the suitable habitat not managed for grouse shooting.


This can’t mean me because this blog has addressed (all of a month ago) why there aren’t many Hen Harriers on non-grouse shooting moors in England – it’s because if there is enough criminal killing of Hen Harriers in some places, they will be much rarer everywhere – it’s because Hen Harrier populations are more like soup than mashed potato.

However, if you look at where Hen Harriers nest across the UK, as government agencies did some time ago, then it is blindingly obvious that they are largely absent from those geographical areas where driven grouse shooting is widespread (north of England, southern Scotland, east Scotland) and yet widespread in those areas where driven grouse shooting is rare or absent (Wales, Northern Ireland, Isle of Man, northwest Scotland, Orkney, Western Isles).

The science shows that criminality is behind the fact that the UK Hen Harrier population is at one third its proper level given the available suitable habitat.  The GWCT ‘briefing’ ducks the real issue – driven grouse shooting these days depends on widespread criminality. That’s just one reason (there are others) why you might want to sign this e-petition to ban driven grouse shooting in England.



I’m not sure where the 50% figure comes from by the way.

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4 Replies to “What they say 7:”

  1. I'm sorry, I think this must be the most pathetic response to your e-petition they could have come up with. "Q: Is discussion of a ban on driven grouse shooting simplistic?". Well of course they're going to say yes, having made that leading question themselves. They then fail to explain why the discussion is too simplistic and don't even provide their own explanation or counter-argument.

  2. It's a pathetic question and a pathetic answer. And possibly suggesting the authors are rattled. After all, they need silence in order to maintain the status quo...and its getting noisy.

    I think there is also the 'Nick Griffin' phenomena... If you are only used to preaching to an audience that laps up what you say, and then are suddenly exposed to an audience that doesn't just lap up your words, you get rattled. Just as Nick did on Question Time. And you come across as what the mainstream or neutral observer sees you as...pathetic. I think it is very telling that every time a pro-grouse shooting individual or organisation posts a comment here, on Twitter, or on their own website, they write a partisan and pathetic piece. And seemingly from educated individuals.

    They're clearly extremely concerned that the status quo has a realistic chance of changing but don't know how to react. They should have remained silent but they didn't, and have blown it. The ball is rolling down a slippery slope, now they're fighting the gravity of change. Tide and time waits for no man...or gamekeeper.

  3. The comments on the BBC Countryside poll (do you think the shooting industry is good for conservation) are informative and worth a read; (can't include link on this phone).
    Ps, result of that poll - 80%. said 'yes'.


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