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Technical Note (TN742): Predator Control for Conservation

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Technical Note (TN742): Predator Control for Conservation

Predator control is a long-established part of rural land management in Scotland, primarily for the protection of game and livestock. It can be a controversial issue with the wider public, but there is considerable scientific evidence that targeted, legal predator control can play an important role in the conservation of some of our most vulnerable wildlife, particularly ground-nesting game and wading birds, such as black grouse, capercaillie, grey partridge, curlew and lapwing.

Our native predator and prey species evolved together and have co-existed for many thousands of years in the natural environment without significant human intervention, so predation is rarely the primary cause for wildlife declines. However, human impacts on the landscape ecology of Scotland have shifted the balance between some predators and their prey resulting in situations where predation can cause reductions of already struggling wildlife populations or prevent recovery.

Listen to our related podcast – Predator Control For the Conservation of Ground-Nesting Birds

Fox reaching to catch a carrion crow in a woodland area

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