Conflicts on the moors

I had an interesting chat with Michael The Moors Man this morning. He's such a lovely guy and I see him often but haven't for a while.  

We talked about what would be happening to the moors and I was pleased to hear not much really. It was only yesterday, I wondered by whom or how the upkeep would be managed. He was disappointed about the grouse ban on Ilkley Moor but I hadn't realised that it wasn't affecting our end which has been owned by the estate since 1951, I think he said, bought from the MOD.  

Now, as I told him, grouse shooting isn't my favourite thing and killing off wildlife for the purpose of rearing grouse to shoot for fun isn't right but I do think the gamekeepers get tarred with the same brush and social media, as usual, encourages it. In the bigger picture, if you're going to eat birds, I'd rather see wild grouse being shot and eaten than mega farms nurturing chickens like this - or maybe we should just go on pretending slabs of cheap meat grow in packets.

And Michael does enjoy his nature; raving about the bog cotton that is already showing off and even told me about some leverets that I can keep an eye out for.

Shortly after talking about all the birds of prey we see on the moors and having already spotted a kestrel plunging and taking off with its breakfast, I encountered three red kites in a little argy-bargy. Seemed fitting!

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