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SNP to license shooting estates

RSPB Scotland welcomes official SNP policy support for licensing shooting estates - Motion approved at National Council

A landmark decision by Scottish National Party (SNP) delegates to adopt officially a policy supporting licensing of driven grouse shooting estates has been welcomed by RSPB Scotland.

At today’s (Saturday December 2nd 2017) National Council in Perth, SNP activists voted in support of a resolution calling for shooting estate licensing to be introduced in Scotland, making it certified party policy to support licensing for driven grouse estates.

The move adds considerable momentum to the campaign for shooting estate licensing, backed by RSPB Scotland.

The Scottish Government have recently set up an expert group to consider issues around grouse moors, including licensing.

Ian Thomson from RSPB Scotland said, “An RSPB Scotland spokesman commented “RSPB Scotland commends the National Council of the SNP for approving this resolution, committing the party to the licensing of driven grouse shooting.

“It has become increasingly clear that self-regulation by the gamebird shooting industry has failed, with frequent incidents of illegal killing of protected birds of prey, unsustainable culls of mountain hares and repeated damage to vulnerable peatland habitats.

“While we have welcomed steps taken by successive Scottish Governments to bear down on wildlife crime, it is evident that the increasingly intensive management of some areas, solely aimed at producing ever-larger grouse bags, flies in the face of public opinion and that better regulation of this industry, to ensure legal, sustainable management of our uplands, is long overdue.

Jennifer Dunn, a member of the SNP’s National Council, who proposed the motion said: “I’m delighted that fellow delegates voted in favour of shooting estate licensing. Raptor persecution is a huge issue that many, many people care deeply about.

“Although the conference floor cannot dictate policy to the Government, I’m hopeful that Ministers will listen to party activists and introduce tough new policies to combat wildlife crime.

RSPB

4th December 2017