More gems from the shooting scene

The Savill’s benchmarking survey is a valuable reference point for those interested in the future of shooting.

Here are a few more areas (see this morning’s blog) which caught my eye:

  • the average salary for a single-handed keeper was £21,100 plus benefits. That doesn’t sound like a fortune does it? What might the benefits be? Well, they’ll probably include accommodation, a vehicle and as much lead-shot game as you, your partner and your children can eat. And if, by any bad luck, you find yourself in court facing charges for wildlife crime offences then you may well be defended by a lawyer who earns at least ten times your own salary.  That’s quite a benefit.
  • bird flu – I’m more interested in bird flu than most people (try searching for ‘bird flu’ using the Search facility on this blog for examples) and I was interested to see that Savill’s (correctly I feel) list bird flu as a threat to shooting. 
  • Savill’s regard the establishment of the British Game Alliance as an important step forward to give reassurance to the public about game meat. Well, a look at the membership of the British Game Alliance shows c220 estates and shooting agents as members (the list includes some very interesting names including Abbeystead, Swinton Estate, Edradynate, Wemmergill and others) but around 15% of the members of this organisation are secret – their names are not given.  However, the rough geographic locations are given and the quarry species are named. A third of the anonymous shooting estates are grouse moors and they hail from; North Yorkshire (the county with the largest number of confirmed raptor persecution incidents), 7 of them; Derbyshire, 2 of them; Angus, 1; and East Lothian, another 1.  The British Game Alliance website states that the benefits of the assurance scheme to the public is that ‘ Through its ‘British Game’ assurance scheme, consumers can be confident of the provenance of their food’ which seems a bit of a big ask when the identity of so many estates is actually secret.
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2 Replies to “More gems from the shooting scene”

  1. ‘The 2017/18 season survey results include data from 130 shoots based throughout the UK. Collectively these shoots shot more than 2,900 days, put down more than 1.6 million birds and employed 200-plus full or part- time staff, generating a turnover in excess of £15 million.’

    I have no idea how small a sample this is but 130 shoots sounds very small to me, as does the 1.6 million bird put down when over 50 million are realeased. Any ideas?

    Also, if much of the game is given away free to game dealers because of over supply, exactly what is happening to all this meat? I would hate to think that dealers were selling it on to supply the pet food trade for example, either for our own pets or overseas.
    We must assume that the dealers are getting rid of it at a profit or they would just refuse to take it. Very worrying.

    If the British Game Alliance are intending to find new markets, we must be ever more vigilant when we go into our supermarkets. Will the meat be labelled as poisoned?

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    1. Maybe BGA will take up and deliver a variation on the good works offered by a charity who at great expense provided pheasant casserole and partridge curry was it 😉 along with an appropriate health warning label on the risks of ingesting lead?

      https://inews.co.uk/opinion/sir-ian-botham-right-say-need-eat-pheasant/

      See also: https://www.civilsociety.co.uk/news/charity-commission-looking-into-ian-botham-charity-over-financial-irregularities.html#sthash.2jnJx0Gg.dpuf

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