As I wandered around the Game Fair at the weekend in my half-veggie way (see yesterday's blog) I did have a very nice venison burger.  I guess this was from a deer farm rather than a shot beast but who knows?  It was delicious!

And our freezer often contains the odd pheasant or wood pigeon.

Now I've always thought that eating an animal that has been living wild in the countryside, and which was despatched rapidly by a bullet or bunch of shotgun pellets, must be morally better than eating something that was factory-farmed.  And I've always thought it might well be healthier for me.

However, a conference held in the USA last year, and attended by RSPB staff, draws attention to surprisingly high lead levels in meat from species that were shot with lead bullets or lead pellets.  Ingesting too much lead is bad for wildlife and for people.  Much of the conference was directed at research on the impacts of lead on the tiny Californian condor population.

I don't think that my venison burger will have done me too much harm - but then it's probably too late and too far gone in my case! - but we know that a variety of organisations are talking about this as an issue that needs to be addressed.