WELCOME FROM THE EDITOR
Aletter from a supportive, yet highly critical reader challenged me to think though my hunting ethics this month. He said that we should all stop hunting during the summer in case we orphaned any young animals or birds. Rather than offering my own response, I asked our hunting writers for their thoughts and on page 101 of this month’s expanded magazine, Jamie Chandler responded, with a clear and eloquent explanation. Eddie Jones also responded. He said “He has his views and it’s up to him. One of the many reasons I keep rabbit numbers down in the summer is that ‘myxi’ will kill a ground if left to overpopulate in the summer months. I’m suffering that now on one particular ground. It’s also down to looking after horses, because if rabbits dig holes that can break a horse’s leg then pest control is necessary. We shouldn’t need to justify why we do it for his sake, but I hope you put it in the magazine. He won’t be the only one with those principles, but so be it.”
What’s clear from this is that we hunters don’t just go and kill. We kill for specific reasons, in a considered and calculated approach. Some people have suggested that I shouldn’t print the letter, but I feel that hiding away through fear is the wrong approach to those who criticise us. We should stand proud and explain our considered actions. Anybody who eats a factoryfarmed Chicken McNugget has much more to answer for than we do when doing our best for the countryside’s landowners.
I feel strongly that we should be proud of the good work we do and the care we take in doing it. Hiding from our enemies makes them feel stronger and all too often they know nothing of what we do, but just see ‘killing fluffy bunnies’ as bad. Let’s tell them the truth and offer them a slice of rabbit pie so that they know what they’re missing. Ed.
Putting delicious, free- range, organic meat on our table is just one reason we hunt Photo by LW Yang