Scottish Government Announces Additional Measures to Protect Birds of Prey

The Scottish Government has published a response to the Werritty Report announcing that grouse shooting businesses in Scotland will need to be licensed to operate under new proposals to tackle raptor persecution.

In the Werritty Report, the independent Grouse Moor Management Group unanimously recommended that a licensing scheme be introduced for the shooting of grouse if, within five years, there is no marked improvement in the ecological sustainability of grouse moor management.

There will also be a statutory ban on burning on peatland, except under licence for strictly limited purposes and Muirburn will also only be permitted under licence.

Announcing the proposals, Minister for Rural Affairs and the Natural Environment Mairi Gougeon said:

Grouse moor management is a complex issue, attracting strong views and public interest.

Having given full consideration to the recommendations of the Grouse Moor Management Group, alongside a wealth of other evidence and research, I have concluded that greater oversight of the practices associated with grouse moor management is necessary…

Scottish Government has also committed to working with stakeholders to produce guidance on best management practices for the use of medicated grit, and convene an expert group to study how best to monitor compliance with the a new code of practice.