Conservation at Work

Blog & News

We know how to protect our much-loved ground-nesting birds – just let us get on with it!

3rd April 2024

What does ‘boosting biodiversity’ actually mean? The question is important because it underpins government policy, funding, regulation and priority actions, via Defra and Natural England, and plays a major part in the prevailing attitude to gamekeepers and landowners in the uplands. Put simply, it means ensuring that native species in the UK survive and thrive. […]

National Parks agree to explain the role of heather burning to the public

3rd April 2024

If the weather clears for long enough to allow some much-needed conservation work, many estates will be seeking to catch up with their burning in the little time left to do so. National Parks are sympathetic to the challenges faced by those on the ground and some have undertaken to remind the public that heather […]

Moorland Association strategic plan – have your vote at the AGM in May

3rd April 2024

The MA Board would like to thank all those that were able to attend one of the recent members’ evening talks over the last few months here. Your feedback on the strategic plan will be going to this month’s Board meeting before returning to members so they can vote on it at the AGM in […]

How do I use the free online smoke prediction tool?

3rd April 2024

HYSPLIT is an extremely powerful online tool used by academics around the world. It is full of complicated options but luckily most are correctly pre-populated so you can ignore most of them. Follow these steps to produce your own smoke map in just a few minutes. Use it as an aid to planning when and […]

Time to thank those who have protected some of the rarest habitat on the planet

20th March 2024

The following letter from Andrew Gilruth was sent to the Telegraph in response to an article calling for grouse shooting and farming to be banned or significantly reduced in the UK’s National Parks. Sir, Chris Moss appears unaware that the American national parks, showcasing nature alone, are an illusion (What our national parks can learn […]

Private Landowners Make Better Conservationists

19th March 2024

In response to the excellent article by Matt Ridley in the current issue of The Spectator, the following letter was sent to the magazine by Andrew Gilruth, endorsing the key points raised in the article. Sir If the government wishes to meet its legal obligations to halt wildlife declines by 2030 it should spend more […]


1st March 2024

The Rt Hon Steve Barclay MP, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, has issued an update today on the arrangements for publication of the general license for gamebird release on special protection areas and their buffer zones for this year. The original intention was to publish the general licence at the beginning […]


29th February 2024

Plans to license grouse shooting in Scotland (both walked up and driven) are inching forward. The stated policy aim of the legislation is to protect bird of prey populations, but needless to say this has expanded. The Wildlife Management and Muirburn (Scotland) Bill, as it is called, has now completed the second stage of its […]


5th February 2024

  The moors of Yorkshire are known and loved for their abundance of heather in the summer, but there are a wealth of other natural species to spot in the uplands, even in the depths of winter. Dead Man’s Fingers, Jelly Ears and Turkey Tail are among the species of fungi while Reindeer, Pixie Cup and […]

Members’ meetings – please join us

1st February 2024

The Chief Executive of the Moorland Association, Andrew Gilruth, is hosting a  series of meetings for members in the coming weeks. Please join us if you can: 6.00pm Thursday 15th February 2024 SCI Belgravia, 14-15 Belgrave Square, London, SW1X 8PS 6.00pm Wednesday 21st February 2024 Lion Inn, Blakey Ridge, York, YO62 7LQ, North York Moors […]


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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Media coverage round-up – July 2024 Our PR team at Media House promoted our report in June highlighting our fears of a poor breeding season for moorland birds, including hen harriers – due primarily to exceptionally we weather. This resulted in several  mainstream media outlets picking up the story including these two examples below. 5 July Barnsley Chronicle Big setback for […]

BLOG: Surveillance – why are the police bypassing regulation? Most will remember the irony of RSPB staff falling foul of the courts in order to try and catch others breaking the law – and then expressing outrage when their evidence was thrown out of court here. In short, judges felt the police could not use others to circumvent the law on covert surveillance. Is […]