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Thread: shooting deer out of season in Scotland

  1. #1

    shooting deer out of season in Scotland

    I suspect this has probably been covered before, so apologies - I would be very grateful for informed advice.

    What is the Scottish law with regard to shooting out of season deer on agricultural land/enclosed woodland?

    I understand that SNH have published a 'general authorisation' on this. However, I don't understand that details.

    Do you have to apply on a case-by-case basis for permission? Or is it enough to have written authorisation from the landowner, stating that the deer are on improved land/enclosed woodland?

    And finally, can you take carcasses so shot to a game dealer (assuming proper authorisation)?

  2. #2
    Hi mungo
    Probably your best bet as its would be quite a serious thing if you got it wrong, would be to contact SNH themselves and ask for the ins and outs from the horses mouth so to speak.
    Regards
    Jimmy

  3. #3
    to shoot out of season you need authorisations in place to do this and also the controllers shooting the deer 'out of season' must be on the fit and comp register. I've got out of season on 3 grounds and night on one. Go here for more info:
    Authorisations - Scottish Natural Heritage
    Last edited by Paul at Fechan; 10-02-2014 at 18:28.

  4. #4
    If things are not clear, I suggest contacting your local SNH contact - Deer management contacts - Scottish Natural Heritage

    Regards

    JCS

  5. #5
    Great - exactly what I was after. Thank you.

    If you have all the appropriate authorisations in place, can you sell the meat?


    Quote Originally Posted by Paul at Fechan View Post
    to shoot out of season you need authorisations in place to do this and also the controllers shooting the deer 'out of season' must be on the fit and comp register. I've got out of season on 3 grounds and night on one. Go here for more info:
    Authorisations - Scottish Natural Heritage

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Mungo View Post
    Great - exactly what I was after. Thank you.

    If you have all the appropriate authorisations in place, can you sell the meat?
    Yes
    The biggest farce in the whole process IMO and the one that monetises the use of licenses despite the motivations supposedly being fixed on safety, asset protection and other grounds.

  7. #7
    As I understand it (from SNH guidance) if you are the owner of the land or employed by the owner then you need no written authorisation from SNH to cull males out of season? You are acting under terms of the general license and there is no requirement to be on the fit and competent register?

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Basil12 View Post
    As I understand it (from SNH guidance) if you are the owner of the land or employed by the owner then you need no written authorisation from SNH to cull males out of season? You are acting under terms of the general license and there is no requirement to be on the fit and competent register?
    Interesting, I also thought this was the case on enclosed/fenced in land protecting trees, mind that was 2009, so perhaps things have changed.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by bewsher500 View Post
    Yes
    The biggest farce in the whole process IMO and the one that monetises the use of licenses despite the motivations supposedly being fixed on safety, asset protection and other grounds.
    well yeh, but once the deer are shot that's the resource gone so the end of cashing in but there's a huge difference between recreational deer stalking and deer control. I have out of season and night authority for all deer on my property but only shoot the sika usually under it and without it I'd have no chance at any realistic control of sika to protect the hardwoods there.

    There's many areas where deer mainly feed at night or because of other issues (summer cover) are particularly difficult to control and so the authorisations are there if needed to allow controllers viable methods to manage deer where needed. I have ground where even with all year round roe bucks I still struggle to hit the cull target for males because the woodland coverage is so thick.

    It costs a lot of money to control deer. On some challenging grounds it averages at 5 outings a deer and with say a 50 mile round trip and a set cull target, you bet I'm going to use those authorisations and sell the carcasses when I score.
    Last edited by Paul at Fechan; 11-02-2014 at 16:20.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul at Fechan View Post
    On some challenging grounds it averages at 5 outings a deer and with say a 50 mile round trip and a set cull target, you bet I'm going to use those authorisations and sell the carcasses when I score.
    but the issue is when the revenue becomes the deciding factor.
    I have seen too many places where the deer are not a significant issue yet licences are issued and then they are hammered

    Very easy for a island farmer to get a night licence under the grounds of crop protection and revenue loss and then shoot 10 out of 15 late season hinds in one night that have come down from the surrounding hills at night (actual figures!)

    or for a "forestry organisation" to shoot 35 stags in February that were wintering in a mature plantation that was destined for clearfell. (also actual figures)

    necessary? probably not
    profitable? most definitely

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