Being a lover of the great outdoors and genuine mountain activities, it hardly needs saying that like most activists I hold the hunting, shooting fraternity in the deepest contempt. Anyone who gets pleasure killing or maiming an innocent creature for fun just has to have suffered some deep, malignant psychological trauma in their past. More likely as a victim of childhood abuse and as such, the abuse of animals-and children- is more often than not a way these poor people deal with their historical trauma. That being said, it’s still impossible to feel any sympathy for these low lifes. Whether it is a bull elephant or a pheasant, using a gun, crossbow, snare or trap is still an incredibly cowardly and contemptible act.
The latest wheeze from this chav fraternity is the shooting of our wild mountain goats in Snowdonia. Some AH called Ian Hartford from an organisation laughingly called ‘Team Wild’! Team Wild indeed, If you call yourself a man let’s see you tackle a Cloggy rock climb in the rain and paddle down the Fairy Glen in spate! But I digress; what this contemptible outfit is offering, is the opportunity to kill a mountain goat minding its own business in the hills. Of course mountain goats are a part of the furniture in our mountains and a sighting never fails to lift the spirits. They are so used to people that you can inevitably get pretty close to them and therein lies the rub. Shooting a fairly tame mountain goat is just about as pathetically pointless as the people who would shoot them.
There is no skill involved; no days and nights spent tracking and stealing up on the unsuspecting animal. Just wander up onto Tryfan with a rifle and shoot the poor creature innocently munching away on vegetation. It’s like shooting fish in a barrel.
The argument will go up that this is controlled culling to reduce the population. I’m sure some of the organisations that are charged with protecting our mountains like the SNPA and the appalling reactionary National Trust will both be happy to collude with the hunters. The irony being of course, that there is no attempts being made to reduce the real ecological villains of the peace—sheep!
These ovine desert makers are left to graze our mountains to the bone and we are told by the Farmers, SNPA and NT that it’s sheep farming that has made the landscape we know and love today. Well then, it’s certainly shaped the Snowdonia mountain environment but not in a natural way. The ecology has been basically raped by sheep. Without them, the natural environment would regenerate and we would see a return of native trees and shrubs colonising the foothills and valleys.
US climber Tommy Caldwell famously kicked a Kazakhstan hostage taker off a cliff. Perhaps we could do something similar if we see a rifle wielding moron poised over the north Gully!