SIR - August 12 – the so-called ‘Glorious Twelfth’ – was the start of the grouse-shooting season, which runs until December 10. During this time, shooters will kill around half a million birds, whose numbers have been boosted to unnatural levels by intensive management of the UK’s moorlands.

Just ahead of the next big date in the shooting calendar – the start of the pheasant-shooting season – Animal Aid will hold its National Anti-Shooting Week (September 22-28). Supporters will be calling on their MPs to back our campaign for a ban on the battery cages in which pheasants and partridges used for breeding are confined.

Animal Aid’s undercover evidence shows that caged birds suffer stress, feather loss and back and head wounds from aggression caused by the bleak and crowded conditions.

Annually, around 50 million pheasants and partridges are purpose-bred to serve as little more than feathered targets for wealthy shooters. We know this is about target shooting rather than food production because, as the latest industry figures show, each bird released and shot will cost the shoot around 15 times more than the carcass will fetch retail.

Readers who would like to find out more should visit or call 01732 364546.

Fiona Pereira, Campaigner, Animal Aid, Tonbridge