GARETH DOCKERTY, spokesman of the shooting lobby, suggests in his letter “Mountain hares” (HAS, June 29) that a previous correspondent said something not in accord with the evidence.

He then proceeds to play havoc with the evidence (and common sense) himself.

Thus he says – in so many words – that Scottish mountain hares benefit from being shot.

So, a beautiful and perfectly harmless species benefits from being shot in very large numbers? Come off it, Mr Dockerty.

He also says – again in so many words – that shooting hares benefits public health and the environment but that is such blatant and insulting nonsense that I will not dignify it with a reply.

Let us not forget either that the area we are talking about – the Scottish Highlands – was once populated but the people were driven out when the landowners – the kind of people Mr Dockerty no doubt represents – found they could make more money from the shooting of wildlife than from collecting tenants’ rents.

It was one of the darkest and most brutal episodes in our fairly recent history and should be better known about.

Tony Kelly, Crook