It was a funny year for shooting with generally high pressure, weak winds and high humidity, meaning that many moors did not see their grouse in August and September, given that the weather did not cool off until almost the end of October when the deluge started.
There were good numbers on the Pennine moors. Wensleydale in particular did well again in 2015 but the higher moors which were exposed to the cold weather in May and early June suffered, particularly Teesdale one of the higher moors where snow lay until the end of May. Grouse production was very negligible and the whole programmes were cancelled.
2015 was a year when one appreciated being fortunate enough to shoot. Nidderdale had another reasonable season. There was again good shooting on the North York Moors on the higher ground, but the lower moors still reporting difficulties with the heather.
Given the benign conditions and lack of cooler weather I’m fairly confident that most moors have left a good stock at the end of the shooting season given birds did not really show on most shoot days.
I am writing this in the spring, March and most of the comments from the moors are that there is a reasonable stock of grouse at the time of writing. Let’s hope we do not have another extended cold spring as in 2015.
Adrian Thornton-Berry March 2016