Do you think shooting birds for sport is okay?


17th May 2019

Reports have highlighted the plight of pheasant and partridge chicks that are transported from France to the UK. When they get here, their eventual fate is to be released on country estates where people pay money to shoot them. Animal rights groups have said that they want to end the shooting industry, but many of the estates are owned and used by rich and powerful people. We tried to find out more…

It’s been discovered that Eurotunnel trains are bringing millions of day-old pheasant and partridge chicks into the UK, ready to be raised on British shooting estates. Birds or animals that are raised to be hunted are known as ‘game’.

Nick Weston, Head of Campaigns at the League Against Cruel Sports (LACS), told us that the chicks will go on to be “shamefully killed for ‘sport’. The LACS worked with ferry companies in 2015 to help them understand the cruelty of importing ‘game’ bird chicks on their ships. The ferries stopped the imports and we are now asking Eurotunnel to follow suit. What kind of world are we living in where a small number of people think it’s okay to kill millions of birds simply for fun?”

Eurotunnel and ferries are also used to transport hatching eggs, which are fertile eggs that can be incubated and hatched into chicks.

The numbers involved are huge: the Government says that over 15.5 million chicks and hatching eggs were imported from France in 2015. Added to the birds that are born in the UK, this leads to a total of around 35m pheasants and partridges being released to be shot every year, as well as a few hundred thousand red grouse. (Of these, the James Hutton Institute says that 15m pheasants are actually shot, along with 2.6m red-legged partridges and 400,000 red grouse. Millions of birds, especially pheasants, are also killed when they wander onto roads and get run over.)

There are no minimum space requirements for game birds, and a Government study found that partridges were regularly kept in “barren” cages, with space of just 0.2m2 per bird (imagine a square with sides of just 45cm). The birds are often fitted with ‘bits’ in their beaks to stop them pecking each other when they get stressed.

Eurotunnel said it was looking into the transport of chicks, so we asked them twice to tell us what they found and if they were taking any action, but they didn’t reply.

Animal rights organisations in the UK have freed thousands of game birds in recent weeks, as they want to stop people shooting animals for sport. However, many people in the countryside rely on shoots for their jobs. The National Farmers’ Union says that even if you disagree with shooting, it “absolutely does not excuse criminal damage and vandalism”.

For the full report, check out this week’s issue of First News (Issue 674, 17 – 23 May 2019)

Do you think shooting birds for sport is okay?


Leave a Reply

purplefox · 2 years ago

Shooting any animal for fun is not okay. Even breeding them for it isn't either. It makes me sick how people find it fun to kill animals

no.1 · 2 years ago

First to comment !!!!!!!! LOL

no.1 · 2 years ago

I think birds should not be killed just for fun. It is cruel and selfish and a mean way to treat the poor birds. We should rethink the idea if killing them!

nebbo13 · 2 years ago

It's cruel.
Shooting to eat, maybe okay, but purely for fun. I think it's just cruel.

drduck · 2 years ago

First! I dont like how people hunt birds!

lolteen23 · 2 years ago

No, because birds have not done anything to us, and, in a way, they are helping the life-cycles of nature. They should definitely not be shot for fun and should not be shot at if the are attacking a farmer's crop. If they are killing a crop, the farmer could fire a blank, just to scare it away. There is no need to harm wildlife. Royals, celebrities and public figures should be able to understand how vital these birds really are, instead of shooting them for a game. It is appalling how some of them are killing our wildlife because they are playing an unnecessarily violent 'game'. It just should not happen.

ginnywise · 2 years ago

Seriously? Of course not! We would be killing birds, and put yourself in the birds' shoes! This is honestly despicable! Where is the fun in being a murderer to BIRDS!

lotussk8er · 2 years ago

It’s cruel and unnecessary as barely any of the birds will be eaten.

rubikspark · 2 years ago

Shooting birds is wrong because their lives are just as important as ours.

rubikspark · 2 years ago

By the way, I was first to comment!!!

hayne · 2 years ago

I think that the shooting of birds should be allowed as, it keeps the popualation of game under control, brings more available food into our lives and is an excellent way to get to know your community and to make new friends.

finbob207 · 2 years ago

First to comment

my_life · 2 years ago

No, because it’s like killing humans as a sport. No living creatures should be killed, especially for a sport.

lotussk8er · 2 years ago

I believe it’s a form of animal cruelty. Killing the birds is definitely cruel, but so is keeping them in really small spaces. They are, after all, living creatures like us.

oliver2008 · 2 years ago

Shooting birds is not okay because we will not have any birds left if we carry on as we are.

lollipop33 · 2 years ago

First! No as birds have done nothing to deserve being shot simply for the enjoyment of human beings.

ajdp · 2 years ago

It is plain cruel to the birds! I say if you eat them, it's OK. I mean, wild animals eat each other, eating them is fine. But no animal should die because some rich people get bored and need something to do. So if it's "for the pot", I'm fine with it. We just shouldn't kill these lovely birds for fun.

ajdp · 2 years ago

Birds are amazing so let's not kill them.

superboy42 · 2 years ago

I do not think it is right to shoot birds as the population of them is decreasing and if this carries on for the next few years, this could endanger some of the bird species.

#GET AWAY LUNATICS!!!!!!!!!!!!

antidisest · 2 years ago

I think that shooting for cooking and food is acceptable but shooting for fun makes me sick

safaripig · 2 years ago

It is evil to shoot birds for fun. You should be arrested for it

dog_lover2 · 2 years ago

I think it is really cruel to kill birds just for fun. I mean who would do that? WHAT DID THE BIRDS EVER DO TO YOU FOR YOU TO MURDER THEM!!!!!???? It's just not fair. :(

dog_lover2 · 2 years ago

I am also with the people who love birds. I mean HOW COULD YOU VOTE YES!!!???? WHAT PERSON WOULD WANT TO DO THAT TO INNOCENT CREATURES!!!???

huzzer13 · 2 years ago

It is inhumane to kill any creature for “fun” however that is not the case when it comes to shoots, the birds are fed and reared so they can be shot and then eaten. How is this any different to fish cows or sheep, the article that has been written is obviously against shooting game which is acceptable but unless you have been on a shoot or you are a game keeper you cannot base your entire opinion on this article. There are many rural jobs, families and also communities which rely on the legal game shooting industry
It may not be acceptable by the majority of urban dwellers but to those who live in the county we value and appreciate an industry which is important to us all.
The article is heavily one sided with pictures and statements suggesting it is a sport for the royals and the rich, this is far from the truth. It also contains inaccuracies and if you wish to discuss bird density in transport then please look at the UK poultry industry and the barbaric way chickens are reared and transported with a lifespan from birth to death of 12 weeks to satisfy consumers demand for cheap factory food. At least a game bird a relative period of freedom and also a chance, please note it is a fact that every shoot only accounts for 50% of the bird reared being shot and that is a well know statistic which this article has failed to address
I am 14 and have a strong opinion on this matter as my dad goes to a few shoots in the season and I often go with him, we bring home around 4 birds every time we then pluck, dress and eat them. You can call shooting birds cruel but surely getting shot whilst flying is no where near as bad as how chickens are killed

fernanda10 · 2 years ago

I totally disagree with shooting birds for fun! My reason why I disagree is because there is a place called Lakeside near where I live and when your driving along past it you hear bangs and sqwarks and then you see the bird that was hit fall out of the sky ! It's horrible they are destroying natures wide range of birds especially in the UK.

ninjapug · 2 years ago

This is unacceptable. Would you like your family to die because birds found it fun.

asbml · 2 years ago


purplebook · 2 years ago

It is not okay to shoot birds for a sport. Imagine if you were tiny and massive birds came to shoot you for fun. How would you feel ??

shivi12 · 2 years ago

I definitely think that shooting birds for sport is unacceptable! Birds have a much a right to live as we do and shooting birds for fun.... its just plain old cruel!

swrdesiro9 · 2 years ago

I think you should only kill them if they destroy crops but put up a scarecrow first so I say nay

torm · 2 years ago

How is it fun to end an innocent creature's life? I understand that sometimes it is that or starve - and that is fine, but killing for fun is like making murder a sport.

torm · 2 years ago

Some arguments are that it keeps the population of pheasants and partridge under control, but there are about 7 billion humans in the world and no-one is allowed to hunt them because of overpopulation.

torm · 2 years ago

If you are going to eat what you kill it is fine, but if you kill more than you can eat it is just a waste.

smiley · 2 years ago

Shooting animals for fun is cruel and a selfish horrible thing to do!What sort of people would do this .
They are innocent creatures and i love them.I can't believe that the royal family do this
It makes me feel sick to think that such monsters would do this!

heh · 2 years ago

I can't even say how angry I feel at those people who shoot birds!!! It's like coming home to give your kids their dinner, and suddenly these strangers come and BANG BANG BANG! You're dead. It's not fair, birds have done nothing wrong, and it's cruel to shoot them without a reason. :(Also, they are part of nature, and how would you feel if you were suddenly shot even when you've done nothing wrong???

I love ❤ First News because they give kids a right to say things they think, because they are normally ignored. Thank you for this great opportunity!!!

bunnyboy10 · 2 years ago

It should be banned because shooting them is horribly cruel. It is understandable for farmers to kill them if their ruining crops and livestock.

cookieyay · 2 years ago

I think people should have drones that look like birds instead of the actual thing, because birds are innocent, beautiful and they did not do anything to get shot.

PinaEgg123 · 2 years ago

hayne I mean there is one thing keeping the population under control, but killing millions of innocent, malnourished, and mistreated birds every year just to socialise?! there are so many kinder ways that won't harm these birds simply for the fun of it. When I saw the photo of even Princess kate and prince William taking part, I was actually shocked that they would take part in murder as a hobby!

sardegna12 · 2 years ago

I agree with purple fox

mancityfan · 2 years ago

It is shocking how innocent birds get MURDERED just because some rich people decide that they fancy going out shooting. How can people call this a SPORT? Sport is supposed to be fun.

izzylottie · 2 years ago

It is not right

mungus · 2 years ago

Shooting animals is not good for nature. If birds became extinct, who knows what could happen? They play a role in nature.

7612 · 2 years ago

I have a point for both sides on this
For yes
The thing is we are all animals and animals kill animals so just because we are humans doesn't mean that we don't have a right to do what animald do. Sometimes people forget that they are animals. As long as they are not endangered then we have the right to do what other animals would do.

For no
How would you like it if these people kept on killing your friends and family and had also been choppping down trees for ages..
I mean their habitat is allready in danger because of us. So why should we keep going. Haven't we traumatised them enough allready. Polution chopping down trees. I mean for benifits that is what animals do and aftwr all we are animals but for fun no way.

hawthorn13 · 2 years ago

Thank you for reading this

john28 · 2 years ago

nononononononononono. DONT KILL THE BIRDS

dechamp · 2 years ago


lol123 · 2 years ago

Definitely not. If we keep killing birds then there will be none left and the world will be practically silent. ?? ? ?

samwise · 2 years ago

It should not be a sport it is inhumane and a form of animal cruelty, shipping the birds in from places such as France to be released into the wild to be stalked and shot is wrong.

lfcrules · 2 years ago

No its evil to kill animals at ALL

sx-101899 · 2 years ago

i.q.t.pup · 2 years ago

I think that no one should be able to for they have done nothing to is but we are threatening them killing them and even worse they could become extinct if we carry on

i.q.t.pup · 2 years ago

By the way I’m all in for team



pandaworld · 2 years ago

Definitely NOOOOO! It's so cruel even though I think birds can be annoying at times

rights123 · 2 years ago

No, because some birds are becoming less in numbers. #nobirdkilling

flute123 · 2 years ago

What do you mean! They have no right to do that. What if you were a harmless bird and you got shot for fun how would you feel????!!!!!!

kinsparke9 · 2 years ago

NO!!! It is an absolute disgrace. To take an animal's life just for the fun of it is completely disgusting.

simpsons10 · 2 years ago

If we didn't have a monarchy, which I think is a complete waste of money, then people like Will and Kate probably would have the money to fund their hunting so hundreds of birds could be saved.

5honypony · 2 years ago

How is it fun to kill creatures? I believe it is just wrong. Plain wrong. They have a life, they may even have a family relying on them. It is not good

vvvv · 2 years ago

Not for food or for pot!

lottielove · 2 years ago

NO!!! You should never kill ANY animals for sport or fun ONLY kill animals if you REALLY need the meat to survive! Otherwise NEVER! Even if they are just rabbits or something THEY HAVE A LIFE, just like you!!!!

trudie · 2 years ago

I agree purple fox its not fun and it ruins there lives imagine if you were shot

awhitebus · 2 years ago


amerindian · 2 years ago

Don't shoot them for no reason at all, but shoot them if you need to eat them, like if there was a famine, not for a freshly caught Christmas Dinner

solarpolar · 2 years ago

absolutely not its terrible

wireskid · 2 years ago

When did a bird harm a human? Never! They don't harm us so we shouldn't harm them.

cakelover1 · 1 year ago


cakelover1 · 1 year ago

#stopanimalcruelty movement has been founded right now by me pls make posters and spread the message no animals should die at a humans hand i fell disappointed that my fellows in the human race should do such a thing honestly why do they have guns anyway aren't they illegal over here????????????

adalard · 1 year ago

We shouldn't be shooting ANYTHING

katkid10 · 1 year ago

Birds are beautiful and amazing creatures! NEVER KILL THEM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

panda89 · 12 months ago

Who would say yes? IT IS NOOO

zizzizoo · 4 months ago

If it is for food then ok but not for fun

weirdcat · 4 months ago

I'm vegan and horrified that anyone said yes!

weirdcat · 4 months ago

My family won't be shooting anyone.