On reflection the way he managed to get unanimity on a commitment to a licensing system provided its introduction was delayed but making it plain that he personally favoured immediate introduction, was a politically adroit manoeuvre. National Trust and Forestry England suspend trail hunting I remain sceptical of how well licensing might work but this is an evening to be optimistic and to hope that those who can, do make the licensing system fit for the purpose of clamping down on wildlife crime and on environmental damage generally. A weak licensing system will be almost as useless as no licensing system so we need to see something that has teeth and that is fair to land managers, and that does not unnecessarily burden the good estates, who should have nothing to fear from licensing. We believe that what has been announced today is supported by an overwhelming weight of evidence and is entirely proportionate. The majority now know just what kind of people they really are. Tue 15 Sep, 2020. 2021 © Mark Avery There must be a lot of smiles on their faces this evening. Ludicrous grouse shooting exemption must not apply in Scotland; Ludicrous grouse shooting exemption must not apply in Scotland. But I was also struck by the repeated condemnation of raptor persecution by many politicians across several parties (including Conservatives). An exemption to the rule of six for grouse shooting does not exist in Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon has said. Grouse shooting in Scotland The sport of shooting red grouse on heather moorlands is unique to the UK and has occurred since the mid-19th century. An invitation to shoot grouse is the holy grail for shooting enthusiasts almost everywhere, but this year – with travel restrictions disrupting the plans of many overseas guns, and American guns especially – fans of the sport are concerned as to how the new season will pan out. That is a tricky balance to strike and will require a lot of detailed, largely behind-the-scenes work. June 6, 2020 June 6, 2020 / britishcountrysports The UK grouse shooting season commences on 12 August ( The Glorious Twelfth ) and runs through to 10 December. These cookies do not store any personal information. P.S. It’s never a definite until the birds are pouring over the butts, but some areas will have enough grouse to sustainably shoot a decent bag this year. Thanks Mark and hope this evening you're partaking of 'a little light refreshment' as they call it in Edinburgh it's very well deserved. A licensing scheme for grouse moor shooting will be introduced in Scotland as part of efforts to stop the illegal killing of birds of prey, rural affairs minister Mairi Gougeon has announced. Grouse shooting in Scotland The sport of shooting red grouse on heather moorlands is unique to the UK and has occurred since the mid-19th century. Grouse shooting is now enjoyed by a much larger audience while still holding the reputation as the king of game birds. Yes indeed. I also think that the recent news about trail hunting will have the raptor killers feeling just a little less cocky than usual - I've always thought that one influences the other. And, as I've said before, if licensing works brilliantly (not my expectation, but a possibility) thyen job done! This is great news and very well said in your blog Mark, so, so right. Single Guns with The Wykeham Syndicate are available as below. I think you are being a little unfair on Mark and Chris here. That's the bones of the success along with a receptive SNP membership. Raptor workers, often unsung heroes (of each and every gender), have amassed the data which have shown the raptor deficit on Scotland’s driven grouse moors. Grouse shooting businesses will need a licence to operate under new Scottish Government proposals that also include controls for muirburn – the burning of vegetation in moorland areas. Grouse shooting to be licensed in Scotland UK News Published: Nov 26, 2020 Last Updated: Nov 26, 2020 The Scottish Government has announced plans for the licensing of grouse moor businesses amid ‘persecution’ fears over birds of prey. A Message from Martha – the extinction of the Passenger Pigeon and its relevance today, Behind the binoculars (with Keith Betton), Fighting for Birds – 25 years in nature conservation, https://wildjustice.org.uk/general/wild-justice-in-conversation/. Isn't current landownership in Scotland due to our own history not imposition from south of the border? Driven grouse shooting is the hunting of the red grouse, a field sport of the United Kingdom. They too will have to be careful and strike a balance, short term weak licensing will lead to stronger licensing or even a complete ban on driven grouse shooting, just as failure to self-regulate has led to licensing. ", New Scottish Government-led research into the impact of grouse shooting has provided ‘definitive proof’ of its value to rural Scotland.Read more:https://t.co/QFYqhKMUSE pic.twitter.com/E3YQJZ6OV5, Liz Smith, the Scottish Tories' Shadow Environment Secretary, said: "Such is the scale of its contribution, it would be profoundly irresponsible of the Scottish Government not to consider the socio-economic implications of imposing unnecessary and damaging regulation on the sector when it formally responds to the independent review.". Matthew - yes, but that's always the way. The research found that it sustains many jobs and delivers high levels of local and regional investment while receiving no public funding. Such good news today. This website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website. A licensing scheme for grouse moor shooting will be introduced in Scotland as part of efforts to stop the illegal killing of birds of prey, rural affairs minister Mairi Gougeon has announced.Grouse Well, thank heavens for that! Raptor Persecution Scotland, subsequently Raptor Persecution UK, exposed the scale of the abuse. There's a long way to go yet though, but at least things seem to be moving at last. But the RSPB has led the call for licensing and although stumbling at times, particularly south of the Border, they deserve all of our thanks and support, and they will need, working with a range of other environmental groups in Scotland, to make sure that the right licensing scheme is delivered. The research found that it sustains many jobs and delivers high levels of local and regional investment at no cost to taxpayers. It was the British Empire, not the English Empire - Scotland was part of it good and bad, and we made a fair packet, playing the oppressed colony when it suits is cheap and nasty. Today, productive grouse moors are mainly found in Scotland and Maybe, just maybe, there is a shadow looking over the shoulders of those in government at Westminster now. This wild, native bird shows great sport, and is even greater to eat: wild bird, wild food. Many people have contributed to getting to this point and it would be impossible to thank them all. A typical day’s grouse shooting consists of meeting at 09.00 where the team will meet the hosts and any shoot day helpers (loaders/minders), who will take care of the guns throughout the days shooting. Shooters gathering on Scottish moorlands today for the Glorious Twelfth opening of the grouse season will be taking extra precautions to reduce the chances of spreading the coronavirus. Out of these, the cookies that are categorized as necessary are stored on your browser as they are essential for the working of basic functionalities of the website. Please stop blaming everything on the English. - a contribution strangely absent from the record. Biden commits to re-entering Paris accord Scotland is very quick off the mark to point out where it's contributed to world culture, not so much when it comes to where we've benefitted from others. 80 - 100 brace days for 8 or 9 guns. This is great news, and I think enormous credit is due to you, Mark, along with Ruth and Chris. There's a reason why, and even then only after relentless lobbying, it has taken the SNP government years and years to get this far. We will see in due course how effective a licensing system is in terms of resolving the problems associated with driven grouse shooting but this is good news. We have never heard such passionate condemnation of wildlife crime in Westminster, and in the last 10+ years never from Conservative ministers. Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. Pheasant: 1st October – 1st February; Partridge: 1st September – 1st February; Grouse: 12th August – 10th December; Ptarmigan:12th August – 10th December; Blackgame: 20th August – 10th December; Common snipe:12th August – 31st January; Jack snipe: Protected; Woodcock: 1st September – 31st January Grouse moor estates who are found to be breaking wildlife protection laws should lose their right to shoot. If the SNP government was as determined to stamp out raptor persecution as its supporters are to promote their political agenda of grievance and resentment an effective and rigorous licensing system would have been introduced years ago. The SNP are pass masters at talking a good game and delivering very little so I suggest that people maybe rein in their expectations a bit. Any loss of sporting revenues is also "likely to increase funding requirements for essential deer management", it said, with the extra money needed "at a time of increasing pressure on public budgets.". A widespread transition away from driven grouse towards woodland creation would likely result in job losses "in some regions", it said, although some of this could be offset through tourism development. If everyone was pushing for licencing and no one was calling for a ban it would be much easier for politicians to ignore it and carry on as normal. Try and work out for yourself what the reason is. So 2023 at the earliest. But there isn't one is there, it's all down to Scotland and there's nothing? Even if this is yet another window dressing exercise from Scotgov it will do them no favours. It has long been one of the highlights of the royals’ calendar but it will be a less Glorious 12th for the Queen this year after grouse shooting was cancelled at Balmoral due to a shortage of birds. Shaan. So a welcome step change in government approach, but plent yof opportunities for it be watered down, under resourced and ultimately ineffective. This is in contrast to the serial, bone-headed repetition by Defra ministers that killing raptors is illegal and we have strong penalties available to the courts to punish those who do persecute raptors when these penalties are rarely, if ever applied and the evidence is clear to all that they represent no sort of deterrent to raptor killers. So it is surprising that you fill your posts with the view that the conservation work of English individuals here is unwelcome or that these somehow negate the debate which is going on (and apparently going right over your head) regarding the past and future relationship between the two countries, not to mention in Wales and Ireland also. Ruth Tingay, Chris Packham and I have played our parts in publicising the issue of wildlife crime and environmental degradation and stoking the fires for legislative change. And let's be clear, Ruth has pressed for a ban too. Truly great news. You also have the option to opt-out of these cookies. Maybe if we stopped worrying about being civil all the time, but for now a ban is a necessary step. The red grouse is a wild, ground-nesting bird of the heather moorlands, unique to the UK. The grouse is the pinnacle of sporting game birds. Covid 19 vaccines Many Scottish country sports providers throughout Scotland offer driven or walked up red grouse shooting with the season 12th August – 10th December (30th November NI) Never mind they are more and more on the back foot now and being shown up for their Victorian attitudes and for what they are, and their alliance with the shooters. I hope it will, to head off a very tedious few years of name-calling and accusations. Find out more, A new report commissioned by the Scottish Government has found grouse shooting delivers major benefits to rural Scotland, Exclusive: GP surgeries offered £1,000 to cancel second dose Covid jab appointments in roll-out chaos, Crackdown planned as Covid deaths hit record high, The new British military mission in Mali has a worrying deficiency – a lack of air support, Salmond accuses Sturgeon of repeatedly misleading parliament and giving 'untrue' evidence to Holyrood probe, Businesses should brace for 'significant border disruption' as France orders ports crackdown, Fears over Scots flouting new lockdown as hospital admissions and deaths hit record high. I'll settle for decisions made democratically in Scotland by the folk who live here. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. 2020 was another awful year for those involved in grouse shooting, and one which brought the end of driven grouse shooting closer. I’d think that only a strong Conservative majority in the Scottish Parliament elections on 6 May 2021 could scupper some sort of new legislation to clamp down on the environmental damage that comes from intensive, and illegal, management for grouse shooting. Many congratulations to everyone who has played a part in getting this far....and that definitely includes you, Mark. It helps to keep the heartbeat in fragile communities and the lights on in the glen houses. We also use third-party cookies that help us analyze and understand how you use this website. We urge you to turn off your ad blocker for The Telegraph website so that you can continue to access our quality content in the future. This decision will be seen to some extent as a political decision but is not really that, because first and foremost It is the RIGHT decision . My impression is actually that we've all moved into a more mature phase where the 'English' word is now part of the debate about relationships within our precious union just as the 'Scottish' word has featured for many years. A licensing scheme for grouse moor shooting will be introduced in Scotland as part of efforts to stop the illegal killing of birds of prey, rural affairs minister Mairi Gougeon has announced. But it said between 47 per cent and 86 per cent of this came from the public purse, whereas driven grouse and deer stalking required no taxpayer contribution. There has been a mixed response to the Scottish Government’s announcement it plans to license grouse shooting businesses in Scotland. And another bonus is that this news has caused Mike the Parrot to have a complete meltdown over on RPUK. As far I am aware neither of them is seeking credit for this decision but amongst many others they have surely played a part in bring it about. There is a long way to go before licensing of grouse shooting is a fact, but it will now happen in Scotland. The grouse shooting season opens on August 12 and closes December 10. It was published prior to the Scottish Government’s response to the independent Werritty review on grouse moor management, which recommended a licensing scheme be imposed if raptor killings did not improve within a five-year probationary period. We know we are all in this for the long haul so we can allow ourselves a wee dram (or fruit cocktail) to celebrate that things are moving forward. New figures published by the League Against Cruel Sports Scotland show seven in ten people (71%) are opposed to grouse shooting in Scotland with only 12% in favour of the blood sport, views which are shared by those in both urban and rural locations. I know there is a long way to go but at last we can see some positive action on this very important issue. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. I would argue quite strongly that people like Avery and Packham constantly pushing for a ban have actually been a big part of this, because their calls for a ban help push the debate in the right direction. It's pathetic. The red grouse is a completely wild bird and not reared then released as are pheasant and partridge. It was, and will be, a Scottish project, though no-one will question the public or likely private contributions of individuals like Mark and Chris or the importance of the UK perspective in finally killing off a beast which was conceived and is nourished by England. 14/09/2020 13:23 BST ... PA Grouse shooting in Scotland as 'the Glorious 12th', the official start of the grouse shooting season, got underway. However, the study said deer stalking complemented other activities on estates such as woodland management, helping to "maintain a larger year-round staff team.". There is a lot of work to be done, and it will largely be led by the larger Scottish NGOs such as the RSPB, to make sure that the licensing regime which is introduced will be as strong as possible. The antediluvian shooters that have shown over a very long period that they refuse or are unable to adapt to the demands of a civilised society have rightly met their Waterloo. Required fields are marked *. Note: If you have specific requirements please […] If it does not work there will be nowhere left to hide for the shooting industry and the arguments for a ban will be overwhelming. Prices held from 2020 providing a exceptional sporting day with full hospitality. Any future licensing scheme for grouse moors must be robust and address these issues, hopefully once and for all. Your email address will not be published. Guest blog – Gull Rescue as a Non-lethal Solution by Kevin Newell. Its certainly a step in the right direction, but looking at the timescales, a Licensing regime will not be in place until after the next election, so 2022 at the earliest? The study also warned that shifting moorland use to conservation, woodland and farming - as favoured by environmental groups - would require an extra cash injection by "wealthy individuals" or the taxpayer. 80 - 100 brace days for 8 or 9 guns. The report found driven grouse created a full-time job for every 1,446 hectares of land compared to 4,000 ha for forestry, 2,100 for conservation and 1,793 for sheep farming. 2020 was another awful year for those involved in grouse shooting, and one which brought the end of driven grouse shooting closer. You read and agreed to our Privacy Policy. The political impetus for this change came from the Scottish Raptor Group licensing petition to Parliament and their subsequent work with the Parliament's Environment Committee all of which led to Werrity. The minister suggested it could take three years. In which case they'll be reluctant to do anything remotely controversial, even if Parliamentary time allowed it, which it may well not. We face twin crises in nature and climate that threaten human health and wellbeing and the survival of many species across the planet. Progress at last! Wonder how long it'll take him to repeat his hilarious bleating here. The arrogance and stupidity of those intractable proponents of driven Grouse shooting should hang their heads in shame. And, incidentally, I don't need any penny lectures from you on Scotland's ecosystems. The remnants of the 'Scottish Cringe' are on full display here, from the deference to English leadership, to the gratuitous denigration of ScotGov. We rely on advertising to help fund our award-winning journalism. So it is a day to celebrate and remember those who have contributed to this day. Come on Mike, give us all a bloody good laugh!:). It maybe wasn't your intention, but no matter. You could hardly have missed the established Scottish view that if you live in Scotland you have the right to participate fully in Scotland and that your origins, English or whatever, are irrelevant. A licensing scheme for grouse moor shooting will be introduced in Scotland as part of efforts to stop the illegal killing of birds of prey, rural affairs minister Mairi Gougeon has announced. That was subsequently expanded into the SNP membership and beyond by the independent Scottish bodies who make up Revive. With this Scottish Government decision together with the departure of Trump, things are looking more hopeful today for nature and conservation. Scotland. A little hope has been restored in the world. A licensing scheme for grouse moor shooting will be introduced in Scotland as part of efforts to stop the illegal killing of birds of prey, rural affairs minister Mairi Gougeon has announced. Shooting grouse over pointers moves at a different pace to driven grouse shooting and requires well-trained, steady dogs (pointers are popular: German short and wired haired pointers, Vizslas). Self-regulation by the grouse moor industry has not tackled the issues of wildlife crime and damage to the environment by unregulated muirburn. That isn't what a cultural cringe is, that would be cringing and saying Scotland couldn't manage on our own and being ashamed of our citizens efforts. At first glance ( having not read the full download yet), i can see no mention of Red-legs ?. Grouse is a challenge for shooters because the birds fly fast, making them particularly testing. Monday 10 August 2020. So far as I can see the driving forces have been Ruth as an individual, the SRSGs and the RSPB. ... . 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