Not such a Glorious Twelfth: Should driven grouse-shooting be banned?

Writing this week in the Independent Mark Avery puts on record his reasons why driven grouse shooting in England must be banned. Mark has also recently launched his second e-petition calling for the Westminster parliament to ban this sport which depends so much upon the illegal destruction of protected birds of prey like the hen harrier and peregrine falcon. In order to ensure the government at least respond to this important e-petition it must reach 10,000 signatures within 6 months. As of this after noon 28/07/15, Mark’s petition had reached 5,923 supporters in less that a couple of weeks, impressive. Only another 4,077 to force a government’ response, so come on help this important petition to achieve the 10k required signatures to force the government to reply.

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Shooting Red grouse for sport  in England’s northern uplands has resulted in the annihilation of  99% of Hen Harrier and Peregrine within these remote locations.

Hen Harrier

There are thought to be less than 6 successful breeding pairs of Hen Harrier remaining on England’s uplands this year, this appalling situation brought about by persecution by gamekeepers.

Driven grouse shooting is a worthless, pointless so-called sport which could be tolerated if only it wasn’t so environmentally damaging. The wider economic and ecological damage caused by intensive management of the hills for the sake of shooting a few grouse (or a lot of grouse) are intrinsic to the system. They can’t be fixed so let’s just put an end to a non-traditional, non-sporting traditional field sport. We should ban driven grouse shooting. And, if we must, walk on.

peregrine flying-1

Following extensive persecution of the Peregrine it is estimated there are currently less than fifteen breeding pairs on moorland where Red Grouse are shot in England’s northern uplands. Puting this situation into context there are more breeding Peregrine now in London.

The season for red grouse-shooting is about to begin on the 12th August. But its driven form, where beaters flush birds towards the guns, is having a terrible impact on the environment and on other birdlife, to the cost of every nature-lover and taxpayer.

Mark Avery, former conservation director of the RSPB, explains why this most unsporting sport should be banned. Click this link to find out what Mark Avery has to say.

 Mark Avery’s e-petition to ban driven grouse shooting can be found at

Mark Avery is an author and blogger and is a former conservation director of the RSPB. His latest book, ‘Inglorious: Conflict in the Uplands’, is published by Bloomsbury on 30 July.


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