Date lodged: 17 January 2018
To ask the Scottish Government whether it will consider phasing out helicopter-assisted deer culling by Scottish Natural Heritage.
Answered by: Roseanna Cunningham 25 January 2018
SNH staff, in partnership with a number of estates, use helicopters on a regular basis. These are used for counting deer populations and provide important logistical support for deer culling in remote areas where access for stalkers and carcass extraction is difficult. Deer are never shot from helicopters and adherence to best practice guidance ensures that the welfare of deer is safeguarded.
The Scottish Government takes the view that helicopters are an important tool in helping deliver effective deer management and does not intend asking Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) to phase out their use.