I’m grateful to the ‘TeamforNature’ (on Twitter @MMNNActionUK) for setting up a thunderclap in support of the idea of getting a debate in the Westminster parliament on the future of driven grouse shooting.
You can add your name to this thunderclap if you have a Twitter, Facebook and/or tumblr social media account. Then, provided we get to 500 signatories by the end of November (which feels like quite a difficult task to me) a simple message will be sent out to your contacts on social media, and to mine, and to everyone else’s who signs up. So far, the ‘social reach’ of the first 125 or so participants is over 1.25m social media contacts.
Some of these people will, once tipped off about it by their friends, sign the e-petition to ban driven grouse shooting and it’s just possible that we might get a debate in parliament on the future of driven grouse shooting.
I’m not saying that that would mean that this Tory government would do anything – but the campaign to fix the ecological damage of driven grouse shooting would take a big leap forward.
Hardly anybody you will meet as you go to work, or go shopping, or go to the pub tomorrow, will know anything much about Hen Harrier persecution, damage to protected blanket bogs, reduced aquatic biodiversity or any of the other ecological damage caused by intensive management for grouse shooting. When they begin to realise what is happening, and that they are paying for this damage in so many ways, they will want change in the uplands too.
Deaths of Hen Harriers such as Annie, Sky, Hope and Bowland Betty, all revealed by satellite tagging, and the ‘disappearance’ of five male hen Harriers from active nests this year, are bringing home to the public the message that wildlife crime is far too common in the British uplands.
It will take a while – but the demise of driven grouse shooting is inevitable.