BASC is calling for satellite tag data to be “transparent and accountable” following a series of raptor persecution allegations against Scottish estates.
In a letter to Roseanna Cunningham MSP, the Cabinet Secretary for the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform, BASC – along with Scottish Land and Estates and the Scottish Countryside Alliance – is appealing for the Scottish government to implement the following measures:
• Public register of satellite-tagged birds.
• Licensing scheme for placing tags on birds.
• Open and transparent data on the movements of tagged birds.
• Improved procedures and protocols surrounding the search for tags which have stopped transmitting and the associated publicity.
Ross Ewing, BASC’s Political and Press Officer in Scotland, said: “Satellite tag data in its entirety must withstand the test of public scrutiny if it is to meaningfully inform allegations of criminality. To do that, the processes around the securing and publication of that data must be transparent and accountable.
“Allowing organisations with anti-shooting agendas to control and selectively use satellite tag data for their own aims and objectives does nothing to inform the debate. In fact, it polarises positions further.
“The organisations that have written to Roseanna Cunningham want to see raptors thriving in the Scottish countryside. We recognise that satellite tagging raptors can be a useful step in helping to achieve that. However, for such schemes to have maximum impact, we want to see better processes around the handling of data.”