Yes I do think they are big huge hypocrites. Just because there are times where hunting can be necessary doesn't justify what they do in my mind.
They are hunting for the sheer sport of it. Not because they need to feed their families. Not because they give a shit about population control. They specifically go out on their big huge private properties and kill for fun. For instance the pheasants they hunt around Christmas time are raised specifically to be killed.if shooting doesn't do the job they either then WRING THEIR NECKS or let them bleed to death. Here is a charming
description of one incident at a pheasant hunt,""I recently saw a pheasant shot and wounded 40 yards above the ground. The 2lb bird, flapping and shedding feathers, hit the ground with an audible thump. It couldn't fly, but tried to run. A dog grabbed it by the wing and dragged it across the field and through a dense hedge. The bird and wing parted company. The dog looked momentarily confused, but then thankfully grabbed the body. The bird continued to flap around at the Gun's feet awhile, while he waited for his next shot. Eventually he picked up the bird by the feet and repeatedly swung its head against a fence post."
More info on pheasant hunting:
"Despite the scale of pheasant production and shooting in Britain, the industry has not troubled itself to develop reliable, up-to-date information on the number of birds involved. But bearing in mind past industry data, plus forecasts of sales growth, it can be estimated that around 35 million birds are released every year.
The release of this enormous 'avian biomass' inevitably has a destabilising impact on established wildlife populations with whom the pheasants will compete for food and cover. The natural landscape is also damaged by this sudden influx.
The 'breeding stock' is typically kept in small pens. Their eggs are collected, incubated in ovens and the chicks reared in heated sheds before being moved, aged six or seven weeks, into large 'release pens'.
Animal Aid has gathered evidence relating to every stage of the production process, most recently at a state-of-the-art breeding unit in Powys comprising row upon row of metal pens. Each pen was just 2ft wide, 4 ft long and 1 ft high and yet incarcerated within were one cock pheasant and six or seven females. The majority had been feather-pecked by stressed cagemates, some so severely that their backs and necks were bare and bloody. This was despite all of them having been fitted with oppressive 'anti-aggression' face masks.
The pens themselves were devoid of any comfort. The pen floor was wire mesh, the sides were made from solid alloy and there was a flexible mesh roof. The floor was at an angle so that eggs could roll through for ease of collection. The pens were elevated about one metre from the ground and were in tight, seemingly endless open-air rows. The area covered totalled at least two acres, or the equivalent of two football pitches.
Once hatched, pheasant chicks are moved to heated sheds, each typically holding one or two hundred birds. Attached to each shed is a small outdoor covered run, to which the birds have access once they are considered hardy enough. At seven or eight weeks they are moved from the sheds to release enclosures - large fenced-in units that can hold thousands of birds. As the shooting season approaches (it runs from October 1 to February 1) the birds are encouraged into fields of cover crops and, come shooting days, beaten up into the sky to serve as feathered targets.
Throughout the whole process, the pheasants are fed and medicated - and any animal perceived as threatening their survival is exterminated. Even after their release, strategically placed feed hoppers entice the pheasants to remain within the vicinity so that paying customers are not short of targets. When each day's shooting stops, feed is used to seduce the survivors back into cover so that they are available to face the guns on another day.
Mutilations and restraints
As indicated, the crowded, unnatural conditions within the sheds lead to aggression. Gamekeepers attempt to counteract this by a variety of mutilations and physical restraints. Perhaps the most severe 'procedure' is 'debeaking'. In its 1997 Report on the Welfare of Laying Hens, the government's official agricultural advisory body - known as the Farm Animal Welfare Council (FAWC) - stated: 'We consider that beak trimming is a most undesirable mutilation which should be avoided if at all possible and only used if essential to prevent worse welfare problems of injurious feather pecking and cannibalism.' The report adds: '...if beak trimming is essential, it should be carried out at up to 10 days of age...' "
AbFab mocks them better than I ever could. http://youtu.be/IHKb-x9urS0