Wildlife management legislation brought to Parliament

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The bill will bring about changes in the management of the protest swamps.
The bill will bring about changes in the management of the protest swamps.

A bill has been published to protect the environment and address the persecution of birds of prey.

The Department of Wildlife and the Muerborne Bill aim to-

End the persecution of birds of prey

Ensure that protest swamps are managed sustainably

Ban the use of glue traps for rodents

Tightening regulations for the use of other types of wildlife traps

The bill would also strictly regulate the use of muerburn, the controlled burning of vegetation, on peatlands.

Permits to burn on peat will only be granted in exceptional circumstances, such as forest fire prevention.

The legislation follows the introduction of new measures in recent years to tackle wildlife crime, including the Animal and Wildlife Penalties, Protections and Authorities Act, which imposed heavy penalties for wildlife crime, as well as the Hunting Dogs Act of 2023.

Environment Minister Mairie MacAllan said: “The illegal killing of Scotland’s magnificent birds of prey cannot be tolerated.

“This bill will seek to address the destructive minority who will continue to commit these wildlife crimes.

“I understand that shooting grouse contributes to the rural economy and this bill is not about stopping that activity.

However, it is clear that protest swamps must be managed in a sustainable and responsible manner to ensure that any environmental impacts are minimized.

The public consultation on the bill, which received more than 4,500 responses, has made it clear that regulating and protecting our natural environment is an important issue for many.

“The views of both the public and stakeholders have been carefully considered in the drafting of this law, and I look forward to getting it passed through Parliament.”

For complete information visit Morburn (Scotland) Wildlife Management Bill website – The Bills (Proposed Laws)

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