A temporary suspension of waterfowl shooting in Scotland will end at a minute before midnight on Thursday 6th January, allowing shooting to resume from the morning of Friday 7th January.
The statutory suspension, which forbids the shooting of ducks, geese and waders, has been in force in Scotland since the 10th of December. Such suspensions are brought in by the Scottish Government to minimise disturbance and to help waterfowl through extended periods of severe weather when their feeding and roosting patterns can be disrupted. This winter’s suspension in Scotland has been the longest ever imposed anywhere in Britain, reflecting the severity of the weather.
Dr Colin Shedden, director of the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) Scotland said: “We have gone through a prolonged period of severe weather where habitats have been affected by snow and ice. However, there has been an improvement recently and we are in agreement with the Government and Scottish Natural Heritage that shooting can resume. However, we would urge people to be guided by local conditions on the ground before deciding to shoot. They should be aware of any signs that wildfowl and particularly waders, including woodcock and snipe, are still under pressure from the weather especially where inland wetlands are still frozen. If they are then due respect and restraint should be shown for as long as necessary.”
Cold weather suspensions of shooting are introduced according to an agreed system which takes account of the number of days on which frozen conditions are recorded at weather stations around the country.