12th January 2018
Following the publication of the UK Government’s response to a petition calling for the continuation of driven grouse shooting, the Moorland Association has issued this statement.
Amanda Anderson, Director of the Moorland Association, said: “This latest petition, which urges the UK government to reject calls for a ban on driven grouse shooting, recognise the important economic, environmental and social contribution of grouse shooting in rural areas.
“We welcome the government’s response which highlights the international importance of the UK uplands which contain 75 percent of the world’s remaining heather moorland and about 13 percent of the world’s blanket bog.”
“We are also pleased that the government recognise that grouse moor owners are working with Natural England within Special Areas of Conservation to develop voluntary long-term agreement and management plans, which will deliver significant environmental benefits, such as the Blanket Bog Restoration Strategy.”
Last year Wemmergill grouse moor in County Durham became the one of the first estate to sign up to a 25 year agreement with Natural England to ensure the moorland vegetation is managed sympathetically.
“Concerning wildlife crime, it is clear the law must be respected and penalties are in place to deal with those who break the law and we believe all stakeholders should work as closely as possible to find collaborative, practical solutions where incidents of wildlife crime persist.”
The petition and the government’s response can be found here: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/205672