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Last Updated: Wednesday, 21 May, 2003, 13:12 GMT 14:12 UK
Animal rights group criticised
An animal rights group based in Kent has been criticised for printing misleading leaflets about pheasant shooting.

Animal Aid, based in Tonbridge, claimed the pheasant shooting and rearing industry was abusing millions of captive birds.

The leaflet provoked criticism from the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) which complained to the Advertising Standards Authority.

After an investigation the authority upheld three of four complaints from the associations.

No it is not cruel it is part of the management of the countryside
Alan Jaret, BASC

These were that the industry was destroying British wildlife, depriving the public purse of taxes and leaving many of the birds to rot.

But the authority did agree that the animal rights group was entitled to the opinion that rearing pheasants is cruel.

Alan Jaret, from the BASC, said: "No it is not cruel it is part of the management of the countryside.

"Pheasants are being reared for shooting that is quite right. Animal Aid have made some grotesque and unsubstantiated accusations which BASC refute entirely and the ASA have come out on our side.

Andrew Tyler from Animal Aid said: "They ruled in our favour in respect of the abuse of millions of captive pheasants which I think is wounding, seriously wounding for the industry because these birds are shot for sport principally

"We are irked they have ruled against us on other points. We think it is unfair that they did so.

"The core complaint remains - we did good research we will continue to make our case robustly and we will not be cowered from doing so."

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