Update 16 April

Another week and Jane Griggs’s and Ed Hutchings’s e-petitions about grouse shooting limp along.

At least the ‘license’ e-petition has now, finally (or maybe not finally) passed the ‘pro’ e-petition. Hooray for that!

However, RSPB magazines have been falling through people’s letterboxes for several days now (though mine has not yet arrived) and the spurt in signatures is just what one would expect – a little bit faster but not very impressive really.

The RSPB is failing to mobilise its members to stir themselves in favour of licensing of grouse shooting, just as the pro-shooters are failing even more to mobilise their supporters (except they have a much smaller base to start with).

Three e-petitions - how do they compare?

 PositionSignaturesSigns in last weekDays left
Gavin GambleBan48,1730
Jane GriggsPro15,1574338
Ed HutchingsLicense15,43541459


Unless things change quite a lot – and maybe they will – there is a clear indication that more people support banning driven grouse shooting than those who either wish to see it licensed or who want to see it continue unchanged and living in the nineteenth century. We may end up with more signatures for a ban than for the other two options added together – but don’t count others’ signatures until the e-petitions close.

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  1. Paul Fisher says:

    Don’t think your wait for the mag will be worth it. Half a page, in the news section, by Martin Harper trying to make the case for licensing, with a small box at the bottom promoting the petition.
    Very disappointing. Why are they not shouting this from the rooftops, why not a mention on the front page and a full article inside.
    Seems to me that they have been embarrassed into putting something in the mag but hope nobody questions it to much.
    I wonder if they will be brave enough to publish a letter on the subject in the next issue? No, probably not.
    RSPB, you are not inspiring confidence.

  2. Keith Dancey says:

    This is a copy of my comment posted earlier today in the April 9th blog... because this more apposite blog was not then available.

    If I may repeat myself...

    The response by the RSPB to Ed's petition in the Summer edition of Nature's Home is weak.

    I'm sure Martin Harper feels strongly about this issue, but after pointing out that the UK's raptors are the MOST PERSECUTED BIRDS in ALL of EUROPE (by percentage of species being illegally killed) only a measly half-page is devoted to the issue of driven grouse shooting (see page 41).

    No photos (poisoning, burning, illegal tracks, snares, piles of dead mountain hares). No mention of the loss of biodiversity of both our flora and fauna. No mention of flooding. No mention of the intimidation of members of the public.

    Worse, no mention of the conditions which should apply for a licensed activity to bring it under proper control, in order to persuade the reading membership that licensing would work.

    You can fight to win. Or, you can fight to lose.

    I am not yet convinced that the RSPB are fighting to win, on this.

  3. Dennis Ames says:

    Surely by now you all understand the RSPB do not care a bit about HHs.
    There most important thought is if they were honest increasing members and so of course income is to cover as wide range of all things in the natural world plus anything else they can think of.
    RSPB is no longer about birds and is a fallacy to have those letters.

    • dAVID sHAW says:

      i disagree and you can see by just looking at what they have achieved. Their reserves and their campaigns have done a great deal to keep rare species hanging on and in some cases to thrive. Their work, with others for Sea Eagle, Red Kite, osprey Bittern, waders and apasserines has been first class. That doesn't mean they have had the courage to confront the hubnting lobby. They've seen what happened to Natural England who had gov funds cut and their mission changed too so they are the poodles - along with Scottish natural Heritage of the grouse and pheasant shooters. Their funds come from private individuals but they know how malicious every conservative government has been in their attempts to silence charities like 38 Degrees and to make it more difficult for them to contact potential members and to oppose the plans of those who wat to trash the environment. On the other hand they have also started to make tentaive moves towrds rewilding - expansion of Abernethy up the mountainsides through regeneration and planting will see 12 square miles added to the Caledonioan Pine Forest..


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