Dave Windle

In early April, the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee at Holyrood reported on their findings from a review on how wild deer are managed, monitored and culled in Scotland. There was a piece in the Press and Journal on Monday April 3rd and it was reported on the BBC News.

The committee found that SNH "is failing to provide leadership" in getting most estates to manage deer effectively. Deer numbers across Scotland have continued to grow due to poor management practices and these growing deer numbers are destroying the natural habitat that they live in. The committee has outlined recommendations for SNH and the Government to act to protect and hopefully restore these habitats as a matter of urgency.

As most of you know, wild deer in Scotland have no natural predators and the only way of controlling their numbers is by shooting. Poor management of shooting has led to increasing numbers that eat any sapling that attempts to grow, creating our artificial tree-less landscape. Population pressure contributes to increasing numbers of deer being found in our towns and cities, a completely unnatural habitat, increasing road accidents and increasing agricultural damage.

NEMT welcomes this report and sees it as a useful step forward. In the next issue of Mountain Views, we will provide a detailed review of the committee's recommendations.

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