In case you missed them…

Three snippets:

  • Jim Dixon is to leave his post as Chief Executive of the Peak District National Park at the end of the year to pursue a portfolio career in writing, consultancy and non-executive directorships.  I wish Jim all the best in his new career as he is a former colleague, a nice guy and a good writer.
  • Patrick Barkham mentions Hen Harrier Day through a report on the Bird Fair in the Guardian.  I’m glad I spotted him – shows my journalist id skills aren’t as rusty as my bird id skills.
  • Here’s a letter from Tony Hams (Chair of Derbyshire Wildlife Trust and ex Council member of Natural England) which appeared on 12 August in the Independent:

“The 12th of August is with us again and once more some of our most beautiful moorland will be trampled by people who enjoy murdering and maiming beautiful birds which have been raised solely for the so called sport of driven grouse shooting.. Not only are large areas of heather being cut and burned, thereby despoiling wonderful views but the persecution of some of our iconic raptors is taking place to make grouse more available for the guns. Whilst it is part of nature for hen harriers to attack grouse to feed their young, it is certainly not part of nature for humans to rear grouse chicks just to have them blasted out the sky for pleasure. On Sunday nearly 600 people gathered in the Peak District to protest peacefully against this illegal killing of hen harriers and other birds of prey merely to enhance the chances of more grouse being shot. It is hoped that those organisations who own and/or manage land in the Dark Peak and other moorland will now do more than just talk and take positive action to stop the killing of raptors and maybe, in time, even to stop driven grouse shooting”.



3 Replies to “In case you missed them…”

  1. Red grouse reared? And he’s the head man for Derbyshire wildlife trust. Shooters don’t have any worries really do they when I’ll informed people are running the trusts.

    1. Rich,

      Do shooters lack all sense of irony? I don’t suppose Tony meant any more literally that grouse are ‘reared’ than I did when I commented on this blog some time back that they were ‘farmed’. Both of us are making the valid, if polemical, point that it is at least questionable to claim that, on grouse moors, these are ‘wild’ birds. All properly wild birds live balanced between predation and being prey and red grouse simply do not. Things which prey upon them are systematically removed, including by breaking the law. This produces the unnaturally high populations needed to sustain a ‘sport’ the economics of which require people who mostly can’t shoot very well being able to hit enough hard-to-hit birds to feel that their £4,000 per day was well spent. And which also by the way leads to the use of medicated grit to ‘control’ a parasite that flourishes amongst such over-population – even though it will have the certain consequence of securing its immunity to drugs. Such is the ‘wild’ landscape of the grouse moor.

  2. He’s correct when he says reared, the only thing the gamekeeper doesn’t do is wipe its backside, you might as well throw poor red legged partridge out in front of the Grouse shooting Idiots none of them would know the difference, tell me how many “countrymen” can afford to go Grouse shooting

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