The concept of Hen Harrier Day was inspired last year by Alan Tilmouth (you can read about it on his blog, here). And it was an inspired move – basically for conservationists to take back the so-called ‘Glorious 12th’ (the opening of the grouse- shooting season) and celebrate this beautiful bird that has virtually been ‘cleansed’ from the grouse moors of northern England (and most grouse moors in Scotland, too).
Last year, Hen Harrier Day was celebrated by hundreds of people using the #HenHarrier hash tag on Twitter and other social media. This year, the campaign is going to be even more visible with a series of planned public protests in the northern uplands.
The newly-formed campaign group Birders Against Wildlife Crime (BAWC – of whom Alan Tilmouth is a founding member) has joined forces with Mark Avery to organise four legal, peaceful and media-friendly public protests in four counties where grouse-shooting is a dominant force: Derbyshire, Yorkshire, Cumbria and Northumberland.
The date for the protests has been set as Sunday 10th August 2014. This date was chosen in preference to the inglorious 12th (which falls on a Tues this year) to enable more people to attend.
According to Mark Avery, so far over 200 people have emailed to say they’d like to be involved. This is a fantastic opportunity to make a lot of noise about a subject that has received relatively little media attention in relation to the severity of the situation. The Hen Harrier has virtually been wiped out as a breeding species from England, and is in serious decline in large areas of Scotland (predominantly those areas used for driven grouse shooting).
Enough is enough and it’s time to fight back.
To express an interest in taking part and to receive updates about the protests, please email Mark Avery: firstname.lastname@example.org