BASC backs amateur stalkers

A new report submitted to Scottish Natural Heritage has called for greater obligations to be placed on local authorities to manage deer on their land.

The report, produced by the Lowland Deer Panel, also says cull data on the numbers of deer shot in Scotland’s lowlands to be improved.

BASC responded to the report by saying it broadly welcomed the recommendations, and urged policy makers to stick with – and even expand – the current system of amateur stalkers providing the bulk of the country’s deer shooting force.

Jake Swindells, BASC’s country officer for Scotland, said: “The highest proportion of qualified deer managers in the UK is in Scotland’s central belt.

This resource is available and willing to help deal with the impacts that deer can have on forestry, the wider environment and on public safety through the high number of road vehicle collisions.

“There is also a recognition that larger areas of the National Forest Estate could be made available to suitably-qualified recreational stalkers, thereby reducing the cost of deer management to the government.

“Currently, this recreational contribution is in decline.”

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