24 Million ‘Gamebirds’ Shipped to the UK to be Shot

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Partridges in a French game farm supplying the UK shooting industry

The HSA can reveal that over 24 million pheasants and partridges were imported to the UK in 2020.

Shockingly, 24,372,048 of these birds were shipped to shooting estates across the UK last year, despite the national lockdowns severely curtailing much of the shooting season. Factory farms across Europe, in which these ‘gamebirds’ suffer in tiny wire cages, are supplying around half of all pheasants and partridges released into UK countryside each year.

Partridges in a French game farm supplying the UK shooting industry
Partridges in a French game farm supplying the UK shooting industry

Pheasants and partridges are brought over either as day old chicks or as eggs ready to be hatched. However, this staggering figure is likely to be much higher as there are no data for the many partridges imported as hatching eggs.

Although the number of imports decreased by almost 9 million in 2020 compared to 2019 due to the coronavirus pandemic, the industry has sadly grown massively over the last few years with 33,221,718 imported birds in 2019 and 30,017,840 in 2018. In 2015, 15,732,157 pheasants and partridges were shipped in, meaning that in just four years, these imports had more than doubled.

Huge numbers of ‘gamebirds’ are brought to the UK each year.
Huge numbers of ‘gamebirds’ are brought to the UK each year.

In 2019, the Hunt Saboteurs Association exposed the horrific conditions at farms in France, Portugal and Poland all supplying the UK shooting industry with ‘gamebirds’. Within these farms, much like the factory farms of the UK, are row upon row of barren wire cages, with birds resorting to pecking and even cannibalising each other due to the highly unnatural environment. All this simply so that bloodsport enthusiasts can shoot at live targets.

Other countries supplying the UK include, Hungary, Spain, Poland, USA and Ireland.

France is by far the largest supplier of pheasants to the UK shooting industry.
France is by far the largest supplier of pheasants to the UK shooting industry.

Previous research found that Eurotunnel is the main supply route for these birds coming from the Continent.

Ring Eurotunnel customer services and ask them to stop the transportation of ‘gamebird’ chicks and hatching eggs into the U.K.:

From the UK: +44 (0) 8443 35 35 35 
From France: +33 (0) 810 63 03 04 

Contact Eurotunnel via social media:

Facebook: facebook.com/EurotunnelLeShuttle

Twitter: twitter.com/LeShuttle

Instagram: instagram.com/leshuttle

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