BASC has sent the following letter to the press after media reports attacking Prince William for shooting wild deer and boar.
Prince William should be commended and fully supported for his stance against the illegal killing of internationally-endangered wildlife such as elephants and rhino. There is no contradiction whatsoever between fighting wildlife crime and taking part in the lawful shooting of species such as boar and deer in Europe. In fact, populations of both boar and deer need to be managed in the UK and elsewhere. Left unchecked, these large mammals will damage agricultural crops and important habitats to the detriment of plant life, bird life and other animals. In the UK shooting is the only legal way to manage populations of deer and boar. Shooting is therefore a positive contributor to Britain’s food security and conservation efforts. In the UK two-thirds of the rural land area is influenced by management for shooting and people who shoot voluntarily spend 2.7 million work days on conservation each year – the equivalent of 12,000 full-time jobs. As well as aiding conservation, consumers who buy British venison and wild boar can look forward to tasty, locally sourced meat.
Richard Ali, Chief Executive, the British Association for Shooting and Conservation.