Despite poor predictions after a dismal grouse season last year, some moors have proved it?s not all doom and gloom in the heather this year. Bags are by no means what they were two years ago, but pockets of moorland around the north of England and Scotland have reported some respectable bags.

This year is regarded as being one in which to build stocks and try to get grouse numbers up to sustainable levels, though as John Duncan, director of shooting at Roxtons, pointed out: ?Some places in the Lammermuirs, south east of Edinburgh, have been shooting 100-brace days and more. Further north, in Inverness-shire they?ve been shooting 100 brace a day, and in one or two other places as well – Castle Grant has been shooting 40-brace days, which is good. These moors did predict they?d get better bags than last year, but this has primarily been a building year for future stocks. Most places have done as well as could have been expected and it?s been very encouraging. Hopefully they?ll do as well again next year.?

ST contributor and moorland keeper Lindsay Waddell has been on a number of moors this season. He commented: ?A few moors have had 100-brace days; they won?t shoot 1,000 brace over the season, but even so the bags have been good. In Derbyshire and the south Penines some moors are doing well, but they are the exceptions; little pockets that have done well and we?ll just have to keep our fingers crossed for next year.?