Our uplands are internationally important habitats for wildlife.
Our Sheffield moors are internationally protected habitats that support important local wildlife.
Sadly they are under threat due to increasingly intensive moorland management for grouse shooting.
We want to see our moors become a fantastic mosaic of habitats supporting thriving populations of all the variety of wildlife that should live in these inspiring places.
This includes birds of prey such as hen harrier and peregrine as well as moorland species such as mountain hares.
What we have done and will do
- Following a meeting to discuss tackling Wildlife Crime in South Yorkshire, we published an open letter in August 2019 to South Yorkshire Police Chief Constable Stephen Watson detailing the main points and agreed actions and outcomes of the meeting. For more information and to read the letter, click here.
- In July 2019 Our Chief Executive Liz Ballard attended a debate in Westminster organised by RSPB on 'Rethinking Grouse Moor Management', where they asked conservationists, law makers, enforcers and land owners to pitch their vision for the future of grouse moor management in the face of an ecological and climate emergency. A full audio recording of this debate is available on YouTube - to listen to the debate, click here.
- In April 2019 The Wildlife Trusts jointly signed a letter to Michael Gove, Secretary of State for the Environment asking for an immediate and outright ban on moorland burning across all peatland bog habitats. To read the letter, click here.
- Launched a petition to ban stink pits which received over 4,300 signatures. In December 2018 our Chief Executive Liz Ballard submitted the petition with a covering letter to Michael Gove. Defra sent us this reply in January 2019.
- Responded to Defra's consultation on humane trapping standards in the UK, referencing our petition to ban stink pits.
- Continue to work with and support landowners and managers, organisations, groups or individuals who share our aim of wanting to see an improvement in Sheffield’s moors for people and wildlife. Our Chief Executive Liz Ballard is The Wildlife Trusts' representative on the Raptor Persecution Priority Delivery Group.
- Actively work with partners through our Sheffield Lakeland Landscape Partnership to influence and promote sustainable moorlands for people and wildlife.
Evidence and References
To see more about this issue, including evidence and downloads please visit our birds of prey campaign page.
Stink pits, snares, traps and shooting
The use of snares is currently legal in England. It is worth noting that the Scottish government has brought in the licensing of snares and is currently reviewing their use - see a debate on the issue from 15 June 2017.
The reason gamekeepers control foxes, stoats, weasels etc on the Sheffield moors is because these mammals are seen as a threat to intensively rearing large numbers of young pheasant and grouse chicks - critical to ensuring a good shooting season. Arguments are also made for ‘control of these predators’ because they will take young ground-nesting birds such as curlew and lapwing.