THOUSANDS of acres of grouse moor have been stripped bare by a plague of heather beetles ahead of the Glorious Twelfth.
Some estates in the north of Scotland may now have to cancel planned shoots as a result of being infested with millions of the beetles per square acre earlier this year.
A mild winter followed by a warm and wet early summer has provided ideal conditions for heather beetle larvae to thrive....
Dr Adam Smith, spokesman for the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust, said "They erupt like this for reasons probably related to climate."
Climate change, producing mild wintebrs and wetter summers, is making periodic heather beetle outbreaks more likely, experts say.
Something must be done!
But Scotland had an absolutely average winter in terms of temperature - here - is someone blaming warming for other causes?