I support grouse shooting for all its benefits to individuals, the environment and the rural economy.
As you may know, shooting as a whole is worth about £2 billion a year to the economy, much of it in some of our remotest communities. It supports more than 70,000 full-time equivalent jobs, 1,520 relating directly to grouse shooting. Shooting is also concerned with the management of about two thirds of the UK's rural landscape.
Habitat conservation is of tremendous importance and moorland management is vital to biodiversity. Healthy heather provides good habitat for ground nesting birds, which are also helped by the control of predators, and attracts butterflies and bees. Globally, heather moorland is rarer than rainforest, and three quarters of it is located here in the UK. Without active management, this biodiversity would be lost. Grouse shooting helps generate funds to allow it to carry on.
I want to see a vibrant, working countryside enhanced by a diverse environment. Grouse shooting contributes to that goal, so I do not support a ban.