Things are moving forward with the Scottish Raptor Study Group’s petition calling for the introduction of a state-regulated licensing system for all gamebird hunting.
You may recall the petition was submitted to the Scottish Parliament’s Public Petitions Committee last summer. That Committee took evidence in October 2016 from the SRSG and RSPB Scotland (see here) and then evidence from the Scottish Moorland Group and BASC in December 2016 (see here) before deciding to pass the petition to the Environment, Climate Change & Land Reform (ECCLR) Committee for further consideration.
The ECCLR Committee will discuss this petition at its next meeting (Tuesday 31 January 2017) and we’ll be able to watch proceedings live on Scottish Parliament TV (we’ll add a link nearer the time).
We have no idea how the ECCLR Committee will progress this issue – for example, they may decide to call for more evidence, they may decide a public consultation would be a good way forward, they may decide to knock the whole thing on the head. We’ll have to wait and see.
Wouldn’t it be helpful if, before Tuesday’s meeting, the members of the ECCLR Committee could read up on how gamebird hunting is regulated in other countries, to allow them to compare and contrast with the lack of regulation in Scotland? If only there was a Government-commissioned report about this very issue….Ah, there is, it just hasn’t been published yet.