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PE01663: Driven grouse shooting study

Environment Energy

Petitioner: Leslie Wallace

Status:
Open

Closing Date for Online Petition: 18 July 2017

Calling on the Scottish Parliament to urge the Scottish Government to sponsor a comprehensive and independent study into the full economic impacts of driven grouse shooting.

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As the edit for this petition was being finished, news came in that the European Commission is considering taking the UK government to the Court of Justice for the EU regarding its failure under the habitats directive to protect blanket bog. We have 10 - 15 percent of the world total - due to the level of burning carried out, which to a very large degree is for the purpose of enhancing driven grouse shooting. The case for economic support in regards to conservation value of grouse moors is increasingly weak.

The growth of ecotourism, which in spite of the obstacles it faces in Scotland is becoming an increasingly important industry here and one in which we could be a world leader, and especially that involving birds of prey (ospreys at Loch Garten, the red kite trail in Dumfries, sea eagles on Mull and Skye etc.) has received little attention or promotion from bodies, such as Scottish Land and Estates, which have extensive grouse shooting interests where there is a perceived conflict with having natural raptor populations. 

Chris Townsend's article "The Devastation of the Eastern Highlands" on his online blog provides an excellent insight into why driven grouse shooting is not conducive to other forms of recreation in which far more people could be involved. There's a growing body of evidence that natural flood alleviation - and there is a lengthening list of promising projects which are supporting the findings of previous ones - strategic tree planting, especially along water courses, the creation of natural dams through the insertion of large woody debris, and even reintroduction of beavers in suitable areas (the forestry commission is proposing a trial beaver reintroduction in the Forest of Dean to reduce flooding of homes and businesses!). Our uplands are not especially mountainous and large scale eco restoration with beavers should be feasible in large sections of our watersheds where current economic productivity is very low and flood prevention should be considerably more valuable. It is better that grouse bags are compromised rather than keeping peoples' homes dry.

There is a wonderful opportunity for Scotland to have an ecologically, economically and culturally diverse rural community. Driven grouse shooting has died out entirely in Wales and is almost extinct in Northern Ireland, but its management has intensified in Scotland further reducing wildlife value, the environmental problems associated with muirburn and marginalising other, quite possibly better economic activities, such as true ecotourism and forestry to produce wood fuel for local people - absence of mains gas means high fuel costs for many in rural areas. The future should not be jeopardised by basing policy and attitudes upon complacency, wishful thinking and the claims of a vested industry, driven grouse shooting is not a cultural asset, but an unhealthy obsession when it suppresses both wildlife and rural economies.

Driven grouse shooting is an utterly unnecessary.

AI

19:24 on 24 Jun 2017

Driven grouse shooting is hugely damaging to indigenous wildlife and the environment. These factors must be taken into account as they have knock-on economic effects. Also, I believe many driven grouse shoots are owned by people who do not pay tax in this country - this has to stop!

Julie Stebbings

19:17 on 24 Jun 2017

Time to halt this outdated intensification and control of our uplands. Stop killing native wildlife to kill game.

Darren

18:05 on 24 Jun 2017

A modern, future thinking Scotland shouldn't be a haven for canned hunt enthusiasts. We must thoroughly investigate the real benefits to the environment and wildlife of traditional hunts and shoots in Scotland. Incorporated into the investigation should be the overall welfare of domestic and wild animals as well as the impact on our landscapes.

Debra Torrance

15:16 on 24 Jun 2017

What should have been a lovely hill walk last week was ruined for me by having to pass dozens of shooting butts. The thrill of seeing a family of baby grouse, and the distraction display of the mother was more than tinged with sadness and despair at the thought of what awaits that family in a few months time. Tourists must surely come away with the same impression. Such barbarity for the privileged few is a blight on our beautiful country, which is worth so much more than that.

Nell Novak

11:53 on 22 Jun 2017

Proper independent research and open debate - we all need healthy moorlands for recreation, ecosystem services like clean water and flood reduction, nature and wildlife - benefits to all

Nonie Horsman

9:47 on 22 Jun 2017

One of the benefits of driven grouse shooting, we are often told, is the promotion of healthy populations of birds like curlew, lapwing and golden plover. Here in the outer Hebrides we have thriving populations of all these birds and many others alongside thriving populations of raptors including hen harriers, and no driven grouse shooting.

Stephen Charles Webster

8:35 on 22 Jun 2017

This is 2017. Blood sports are not a tradition, they are a relic.

Paul Fisher

22:49 on 21 Jun 2017

At a time when we should be more conscious of our carbon dioxide emissions (eg turn gadgets off standby, etc), why must we witness the hills go up in flame every spring when a heather moorland and peat bog can trap more CO2 than a tropical rain forest?

Jim Hall

16:19 on 21 Jun 2017

the news about this problem is very well known.there is no shying away from it.it is a disgrace that it still continues in this modern world.even the americans think it's stupid.it need to stop completely for the sake of the world.

karl freeman

16:06 on 21 Jun 2017

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