SNH should take tougher line on deer man­age­ment

The Oban Times - - Farming -

SNH must take a harder line on non-co­op­er­a­tive landown­ers on deer man­age­ment, the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment has urged, in or­der to pro­tect habi­tats and help bio­di­ver­sity.

An ear­lier re­port by Holy­rood’s en­vi­ron­ment, cli­mate change and land re­form com­mit­tee out­lined changes that must be made in the way wild deer are man­aged, mon­i­tored and culled if Scot­land is to achieve its bio­di­ver­sity tar­gets by 2020.

The re­port, which warned that leg­is­la­tion aimed at pro­tect­ing the nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment from deer im­pacts is not fit for pur­pose, found 50 per cent of deer man­age­ment groups are not de­liv­er­ing an ef­fec­tive plan on the ground. MSPs also warned that SNH is fail­ing to pro­vide lead­er­ship in man­ag­ing the dam­ag­ing im­pact of deer.

The Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment also an­nounced it will es­tab­lish an in­de­pen­dent group to ex­am­ine deer man­age­ment is­sues and mon­i­tor progress.

En­vi­ron­ment sec­re­tary Roseanna Cun­ning­ham said: ‘While some progress has been made in the man­age­ment of our wild deer fol­low­ing re­cent changes to leg­is­la­tion and through the work of the As­so­ci­a­tion of Deer Man­age­ment Groups, we know fur­ther im­prove­ments are needed to min­imise the costs of deer road ve­hi­cle col­li­sions and re­plac­ing fenc­ing, as well as re­duc­ing the en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pact. By set­ting up an in­de­pen­dent group on deer man­age­ment, en­cour­ag­ing SNH to use their full range of pow­ers and im­prov­ing deer man­age­ment plans, we hope to ad­dress the main chal­lenges and en­sure we pro­tect our en­vi­ron­ment and the in­ter­ests of the pub­lic, as well as sup­port the ru­ral econ­omy.’

The move was wel­comed by the Scot­tish Game­keep­ers’ As­so­ci­a­tion.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.