Sunday, 14 March 2010

Scotland: Snaring legislation

The changes to the snaring legislation came into effect in Scotland on 11 March.  All involved directly or indirectly with snaring should make themselves aware of the changes to the law which cover such issues as:

  • the requirement for all snares to be fitted with stops
  • all snares to be checked every 24 hrs
  • all snares to be free running and this is to be confirmed at the 24hr check
  • snares must be properly fixed to prevent them being dragged
  • snares should not be set near features that could lead to animals being fully or partially suspended or drowned.
For further guidance see the practitioners guide that can be downloaded from the Scottish Government's website.  This guide was produced by the industry and we had some input to it.

BASC Scotland, the Scottish Gamekeepers Association and the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust have collaborated to produce and provide training in the use of snares in Scotland.  Each of the organisations will be conducting a half-day training course, costing £45, that will include theoretical and practical assessments. For more information and to book contact the BASC Scotland Office on 01350 723226.

I hope that everyone involved with snaring will embrace the guidance to make sure that they stay within the law.  There is little doubt that snaring will remain under the political microscope and if the industry cannot be seen to be carrying out snaring within the law there is every chance that our ability to use snaring as a valid management tool will be under threat.

Snaring is an essential part of best practice moorland management and the Trust supports its use fully.  This legislative change comes hard on the heels of the Waders on the fringe report, which emphasises the need to be able to control ground predators such as foxes, stoats & weasels.

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