It's bizarre that anyone should feel ploughing up our heather moorlands is great idea (Grouse shooting is ‘least effective’ use of Scotland's land, December 10). There is so little of it left on our planet that the 1992 Rio Convention on Biodiversity ratified the global importance of UK heather moorland. Today we have 75% of what remains in the world; and the habitat management undertaken on grouse moors preserves and enhances it.
In contrast, though, heather cover was falling sharply in the UK until the early 2000s, generally as a result of overgrazing and/or commercial forestry plantations. This matters because these heather moors support 13 biological communities listed under EC Directive 92/43/EEC on the Conservation of Natural Habitats and of Wild Flora and Fauna; and 18 species of European or international importance.
It’s time to celebrate those committed to managing our heather moorland for generations to come.
Director of communications at Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT)
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