And six times more Scots are against grouse shooting than support it
New polling has revealed three quarters of Scots are against grouse moor land management practices.
The figures have been released ahead of the Revive coalition’s national conference - Changing the Face of Scotland - hosted by wildlife expert, TV presenter and conservationist, Chris Packham.
The polling, commissioned by the League Against Cruel Sports on behalf of Revive, shows the use of predator control on grouse moors is opposed by over three quarters (76%) of the public, with 73% opposed to the practice of muirburn to change the landscape to ensure there are more grouse available for shooting.
Both these practices are supported by just one in ten people. The figures also show six in ten people oppose grouse shooting, with only 13% supporting it.
Max Wiszniewski, campaign manager for Revive, said: “Grouse shooting is a sport enjoyed by a tiny minority of Scots, and the public are now strenuously voicing their opposition to a bloodsport which takes over a disproportionate amount of the Scottish countryside, for little economic gain, for the pleasure of just a few.
“These latest figures back Revive’s position, even if there is ever any legitimate reasons for predator control or muirburn, increasing grouse numbers for sport is not one of them. The public heavily backs us on this.
“This weekend’s national conference will bring together the country’s leading wildlife, biodiversity and land reform experts to explore how we change the face of Scotland, for the good of our wildlife, our environment and our people.”
The conference which is expected to attract over 600 delegates will look at issues surrounding intensive grouse moor management in Scotland and debate whether forthcoming legislation will go far enough to protect wildlife and the environment.
Speakers include journalist, broadcaster and campaigner, Lesley Riddoch; RSPB Scotland’s head of investigations, Ian Thomson; Mark Diffley from the Diffley Partnership; Jessica Findlay, moorland licencing manager for NatureScot; and Ruth Tingay from Raptor Persecution UK.
Chris Packham added: “This conference comes at a crucial time for nature as the Scottish Parliament is deciding how to tackle the biodiversity and climate crisis while grouse shooting continues to exacerbate both.
“Intensive grouse moor management is unsustainable and the Scottish Government seem genuine in their desire to end the killing of Scotland’s birds of prey – a crime commonly associated with grouse shooting.”
Mark Diffley, founder and director of the Diffley Partnership which conducted the polling, said: “This is our fourth poll for Revive which looks at public perceptions to grouse shooting and predator control. As with previous years we find that the majority of Scots oppose both, with 60% opposing grouse shooting and 76% against predator control. Interestingly, opposition is strong across all ages, social classes and geographic areas of the country.
“Elsewhere, the practices of using traps and muirburn on moors are supported by a majority of Scots, except where they are used to enhance grouse numbers for shooting where the vast majority oppose the practices.”
The conference, which takes place on Sunday, 12 November at the Perth Concert Hall, will feature a keynote address by Lorna Slater, minister for green skills, circular economy and biodiversity.
Revive is a coalition of organisations working for grouse moor reform in Scotland. Coalition partners include Common Weal, OneKind, Friends of the Earth Scotland, League Against Cruel Sports and Raptor Persecution UK.