Scottish Countryside Alliance (SCA) has provided preliminary comments on the Review of Game Bird Law and Licensing in Selected European Countries, published by SNH on February 24, 2017. It is a large report that will take some time to analyse in detail, and the SCA will be discussing it at length with government and our partner organisations in advance of communications with the Cabinet Secretary.

SCA Director Jamie Stewart said:

“The SNH report makes no specific recommendations, but rather outlines the licensing and administrative systems in operation in a select group of countries in Europe.

“These systems vary significantly from country to country, with some simply requiring evidence that the hunter has paid an annual hunting fee and others requiring hunters to pass an examination not unlike our own DMQ Deer Stalking Certificate. The key point however is that these differing systems reflect each country’s unique hunting history and culture, and may not be easily copied across national borders.

“The strict regulations that apply to Scottish game shooting work with Scotland’s unique rural heritage and landscape. There is no evidence that an expensive and bureaucratic new system would be of any benefit at all.”