New podcast: Professor Arjun Amar discusses raptor persecution on UK driven grouse moors

Arjun Amar will be a familiar name to anyone who’s taken more than a passing interest in the illegal persecution of birds of prey in the UK.

Arj has published a number of papers linking the illegal persecution of raptors to driven grouse shooting, including the detrimental effects this can have at a population scale, particularly on red kites, peregrines and hen harriers.

Most recently he was a co-author on the important Murgatroyd et al paper (2019) which showed that at least 72% of hen harriers satellite-tagged by Natural England were presumed to have been illegally killed on or close to driven grouse moors (see here).

Arj was recently interviewed by The Biome Project for a podcast about UK raptor persecution and its link to driven grouse shooting.

You can watch the 53 minute interview on YouTube (here) or if you’re on the move you can listen to the podcast (here).

As you’d expect from someone with such credentials, it’s well worth a listen.

As you might also expect, Arj’s research has drawn him to the attention of some members of the game-shooting industry who obviously don’t like what he’s doing and have tried, over a number of years, to undermine his credibility and scientific integrity with unfounded, disgraceful abuse and slurs.

For example:

Here was Arj’s response to the trolls:

As many of you will know, being targeted and harassed by some within the game-shooting industry is now commonplace (e.g. see here, here, here, here, here, here, here). Obviously, these abusive, personal attacks are designed to intimidate and silence not only those already speaking out against the criminal driven grouse shooting industry, but also anybody else who might be thinking of joining in.

Let’s turn that on its head and instead of silencing these voices let’s amplify them. If you’re on Twitter, please follow Arj and share his work: @arjundevamar

If you want to find out more about raptor persecution in the UK and what action is being taken to stand up to it, watch Hen Harrier Day this Saturday (7th August) from 10am, organised by Wild Justice & hosted by Chris Packham and Megan McCubbin. Sign up here for details.

8 thoughts on “New podcast: Professor Arjun Amar discusses raptor persecution on UK driven grouse moors”

  1. I think in the end these types of attacks on a person’s character usually in the end have the opposite effect to the intended one…most people understand I think that such attacks usually occur when there is no defence against the accusations being made.

    1. I’m outraged that so many beautiful raptors have been murdered so a few sub humans can enjoy a grouse shoot.
      If I had my way [Ed: rest of comment deleted]

  2. I suspect there is also a strong element of racism here from the dinosaurs in the shooting cabal. The quicker the moors are returned to nature and their local communities the better. Grouse shooting is long long overdue being consigned to a sad chapter of our history

    1. You’re not wrong, I once encountered the statement ‘at least those Syrian refugees would be good for target practice down at the rifle range’ on a shooting forum. Questioning people’s sexuality so that they can then be insulted by those with a mindset that would have been antediluvian in the 1970s is another line of supposed attack. There’s also maligning anyone on benefits, which to some ‘country folk’ is all townies who live on council estates. I think especially with the latter a psychologist would have a field day, doesn’t that reek of people with a deep and bitter sense of their own inadequacy desperately trying to create a false sense of superiority through smears, lies and self deception?

  3. The people to persuade are the royals. If they stop grouse shooting on their estates and show disapproval, you won’t have all the hooray Henrys dressing up in tweed aping nobility !

  4. I’ve just watched the video and have to say Arjun was brilliant, what a bloody nice bloke. Very bright obviously, but he’s clearly very approachable which is not always true of academics. No wonder he gets such abuse from the other side he must put their inferiority complex ‘up to eleven’. He said some fantastic things about reimagining the moors i.e rewilding, and how poor the economics of driven grouse shooting are, plus how ludicrous foreign students think it is. Potent stuff. As far as reimagining the uplands goes I think Arjun would find this video from Rewilding Britain relevant and excellent, it doesn’t do grouse shooting any favours – interesting to note the Fieldsports channel has been trying to do a major hatchet job on rewilding recently, they’re worried.

  5. The great thing about Arjun is that despite being a very clever scientist he manages to explain things in a way we can all understand and yes he is also a very nice person, that comes across too. Lovely podcast, the trolls and idiots from the “countryside”, not that they represent this particular countryside dwellers views, are just plain wrong and all their comments do is show how thoroughly ignorant, stupid and blinkered they are.

  6. Happy to follow Arjun. The gun shooting lobby are a xxxxxxxxx group of people and their disgusting abuse will hasten their demise. It can’t happen soon enough.

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