Conservation at Work

Who We Are

The Moorland Association was set up in 1986 to tackle a serious decline in heather moorland, dating back to the Second World War.

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What We Do

Grouse shooting on 175 estates in England and Wales plays an important part in the rural economy during a season running from August – the Glorious Twelfth – until December 10.

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How We Do It

Forging close ties with influential bodies allows us to foster a greater understanding of the widespread needs and issues surrounding both our moorlands and grouse shooting.

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Latest News
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Heather coverage UK

Heather Coverage in UK

Moorland Association members are passionate in their care for 860,000 acres of heather moorland in England and Wales for wild red grouse, spending £52. 5 million a year on these iconic, fragile landscapes.

Rarer than rain-forest, around 75% of Europe’s upland heather moorland is found in the UK, treasured by millions of walkers and wildlife enthusiasts.

More than 60 per cent of England’s upland Sites of Special Scientific Interest are moors managed for grouse shooting. Over forty per cent are also designated under European habitats and bird directives for their rare and remarkable vegetation and ground-nesting bird populations.

The purple cloaked treasures are at the heart of our most precious landscapes in the country’s prized National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Shooting provides essential income for the protection of this remarkable land and is responsible for over 1,500 jobs in the heart of the countryside. Even during the most successful seasons, shooting usually stops well before the official end on December 10 and every day is a bonus for the local economy.

Because of the significant costs involved in year round management, running a grouse moor does not often make money, but the effects of such extensive conservation are felt across the vast, much-loved moorland wilds.

Careful land management through the skill and dedication of game keepers has seen significant gains for some of the country’s most endangered ground-nesting birds. It has also led to the successful breeding of hen harriers, Britain’s most talked about birds of prey.

We are committed to a raft of measures which maintain the exceptional habitats of unique birds, plants and animals and safeguard peat for carbon storage and water quality.

Without this work, the precious land would revert to scrub and forest and the heather moors lost forever.

 

Watch the hen harrier nest cam at Swinton Estate

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Did You Know?

75% of Europe’s remaining upland heather moorland is found in the UK – but this area declined alarmingly over the latter part of the last century. The Moorland Association was set up in 1986 to coordinate the efforts of moorland owners and managers to halt this loss, particularly in England and Wales.

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Read our News

RURAL BUSINESSES BOUNCE BACK FOR START OF SHOOTING SEASON Rural communities and businesses were today celebrating the Glorious 12th, the start of the grouse shooting season. Pubs, hotels, shops and suppliers voiced their support for the social, economic and environmental benefits that come with a successful grouse programme which can run until 10th December. One of the first grouse moors in action today was […]

MOORLAND ASSOCIATION URGES MAJOR RETHINK ON EFFORTS TO TACKLE DEADLY WILDFIRES The Moorland Association, whose members manage nearly one million acres of heather moorland, today called for a ‘major rethink’ on how best to tackle devastating wildfires. The association said today the surge in wildfires in the UK and internationally serves as the ‘starkest reminder’ of the need to reduce the fuel loads that drives wildfire. […]

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