Rearing of pheasant and partridge

2361An east-Midlands MP, David Taylor, has laid an Early Day Motion (EDM) before Parliament calling for a ban on the rearing of birds for shooting (read the full EDM here) in a similar move to that passed by the Dutch parliament in 2002. Thus far, the EDM has attracted the support of almost 70 MPs.

As one would expect, both the Countryside Alliance and the Daily Telegraph – house journal for everyone interested in killing for fun – are furious that anyone should attempt to curb their enthusiasm for another bloodsport. In the Alliance’s weekly newsletter, their Chief Executive Simon Hart fires a broadside at those in the shooting community who claim there is no political threat to their sport. Given that this EDM was tabled in June, his fury has taken some time to develop.

Earlier this year, the League found itself in an interesting position as part of Defra’s working group on game birds. We found that we were in agreement with the British Association for Shooting & Conservation, who agreed with us that the battery cages used for rearing game birds – they are so small as to be illegal for rearing poultry – should be outlawed. The League and BASC found themselves in disagreement with the Countryside Alliance who think it acceptable for such cruelty to continue.

There are a great deal of MPs of all parties who support the shooting industry. But then, there used to be a majority who supported hunting. We are working hard to demonstrate the cruelty inherent in the shooting industry and will not stop until this cruel sport is outlawed completely. We would encourage all supporters to contact their MP and ask them to sign EDM 1684.

Incidentally, we find it bizarre that Mr Hart finds it “extremely disturbing” that 10% of the House of Commons will sign a motion against shooting, but isn’t disturbed at all that a majority of the House – and the vast majority of the public – want to see the Hunting Act retained.

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