I am very fond of the people who comment on this blog – most of them anyway. There is so much knowledge, and humour, and different perspectives that I learn a lot. Sometimes you just make me smile and sometimes you provide nuggets of information.
Yesterday, Richard Wilson, a frequent and valued commenter here, pointed us all to the Sandford Principle.
“Where irreconcilable conflicts exist between conservation and public enjoyment, then conservation interest should take priority”
So why do we have grouse shooting in National Parks? Why do we have grouse shooting, at all, in any National Parks? See this example and substitute the words Hen Harrier for Osprey and Red Grouse for fish and …?
‘If there is a conflict between protecting the environment and people enjoying the environment, that can’t be resolved by management, then protecting the environment is more important.’
The thing is, that driven grouse shooting is certainly not public enjoyment – it’s enjoyment by a very small number of private individuals which deprives many other people and much wildlife of their enjoyment of our National Parks.
The Peak District National Park needs to act on grouse shooting within its boundaries – with a new Chief Executive there, there must be more opportunity for change. I don’t know exactly what its options are, for the National Park is only a relatively small landowner, but it can no longer sit idly by, setting up talking shops, while too much of the natural beauty it was set up to preserve and enhance is criminally killed within its boundaries. Raptor persecution is not a secret, it’s not a hypothesis, it’s a reality within the Peak District National Park. And it is shameful.
Signing this e-petition will send a signal that more public bodies should act to remove the ills of driven grouse shooting from our hills.