The League has a dedicated team campaigning on protecting animals in Scotland, who work alongside our teams in the rest of the UK.

Our main campaigns at the moment are:

  • Really banning foxhunting in Scotland
  • Banning snares
  • Ending driven grouse shooting in Scotland

Our team works closely with the Scottish Government, MSPs, civil servants and other key players.

Fox Hunting in Scotland

The League Against Cruel Sports won a victory when the Scottish Parliament passed legislation intending to ban foxhunting, the Protection of Wild Mammals Act, in 2002.

While there is no threat that the law governing hunting in Scotland will be repealed, the League has published the results of a two year investigation which we believe shows weaknesses in the law which allow hunting in Scotland to continue. 

We are convinced that the current legislation should be strengthened to ensure that packs of hounds are no longer encouraged to chase and kill wild mammals across the Scottish countryside.

We were pleased therefore when our investigations led to a Scottish Government announced a review of the legislation, led by Lord Bonomy. The League has been heavily involved with this review, including providing written and oral evidence, and submitting hundreds of hours of video evidence. In 2016, Lord Bonomy published his review, which supports key League calls on strengthening the hunting legislation in Scotland. We will be working with the Scottish Government to ensure the strongest possible protection for our wild mammals. 

Sign our petition to stop the killing of animals by hunts

Snaring in Scotland

As in other parts of the UK, we continue to press for a full ban on the sale, manufacture, possession and use of snares in Scotland. Snaring is a cruel, indiscriminate, ineffective and outdated method of predator control. 

The first time the Scottish Parliament considered snaring, the League and others campaigned very hard for a ban. However, we were opposed by pro-shooting organisations and as a compromise, the Scottish Government decided to introduce regulations on snaring with the Wildlife and Natural Environment (Scotland) Act 2011. They also committed to review the effectiveness of this legislation in 2016, and every five years thereafter.

The League believes that regulation is not working, is ineffective in addressing animal welfare concerns and the only way to address this is to completely ban the manufacture, sale and use of all snares.

In October 2016, a new report into snaring in Scotland, commissioned jointly by the League and OneKind found that regardless of any future ‘tweaks’ to the snaring legislation, snares would continue to be so unacceptably cruel and indiscriminate that an outright ban would be the only answer. The report cited instances of evisceration, strangulation and agonising deaths suffered by animals caught in snares, including non-target animals such as protected Scottish wildcats, mountain hares, badgers, hedgehogs, deer, otters and even family pets.

We continued to work with MSPs, the Scottish Government and other welfare organisations to campaign for a full ban on snares. We also held a fringe at SNP conference on snares in October 2016. In July 2016, the Scottish Government confirmed that Scottish Natural Heritage would conduct a limited review. We expect the review to be published shortly.

Shooting in Scotland

In particular, grouse shooting contributes to:

  • Wildlife crime - Predators, particularly raptors, are killed illegally to protect the grouse until they can be shot.
  • Environmental damage - Muirburn, or the practise of burning heather, has been linked to out of control fires and flooding
  • Dubious landowning patterns - Shooting takes place on vast swathes of Scotland. In some cases, communities were removed from the land to create sheep farms, which were then replaced by shoots, leaving only a scarcely viable population. Shooting contributes to problems associated with rural depopulation, rather than solving them.

Many other wild animals, including hares, foxes and others are persecuted by the game industry. We campaign to expose the unpleasant truths that the shooting industry would rather hide. You can find out more by reading the Intensification of Grouse Moor Management in Scotland, see below.

How can I help?

  • Sign our petition to get hunting really banned in Scotland
  • Why not join our Scotland supporter group and get active with other like minded people? To find out more, get in touch!

Find out more