12 Facts About Grouse

In honour of the fast-approaching Glorious 12th, here are 12 of our favourite facts about Grouse

  1. Grouse meat has about 5% less fat than Chicken, as well as about twice the protein.
  2. Grouse shooting generates about £150 million for the economy every year, supporting approximately 2,500 jobs (42,500 working days)
  3. Grouse are not artificially reared for shooting. Instead, teams of Gamekeepers manage the moors to produce a sustainable number of birds, as well as to encourage diversity in the ecosystem.
  4. Grouse can reach flight speeds of up to 70 miles per hour, flying low to the ground, and often changing direction at the last minute.
  5. There are 18 different species of Grouse, the majority of which are found in the colder regions of the Northern Hemisphere, such as the Arctic Circle.
  6. They are primarily a ground-dwelling bird, only flying when bursts of speed are necessary to avoid predation.
  7. The Red Grouse is one of the only species of Grouse that does not grow a white winter coat.
  8. Heather makes up around 50% of the diet of the Red Grouse, the rest comes from things like insects and berries.
  9. Grouse shooting can be traced back to 1853, after the railways allowed easier access to the moors.
  10. UK Grouse moors make up about 75% of heather moorland worldwide.
  11. Red Grouse are only found in the British Isles, and are the national game bird of Scotland. It was also the mascot of their rugby team, between 1990-2007.
  12. It is illegal to shoot Grouse, along with many other game birds, on Sundays.

For more information about UK Moorland, visit the Moorland Association

For more information about Red Grouse, see the GWCT Website

See also BASC’s publication on Grouse Shooting

For some tips on cooking it, read here.