MSP Alison Johnstone launches a consultation on her members bill which could see the end of fox hunting and the mass 'culling' of mountain hares as we know it.
The Scottish Government has already committed to tightening the ban on fox hunting and tackling the mass killing of mountain hares but this new initiative moves the issue up the agenda. The Scottish Government will have to decide if they are happy for their thunder to be stolen on this or to take the opportunity themselves.
You can respond to the consultation here
Why is this important?
This proposed bill would protect foxes and mountain hares across the board and would mean that killing them for the purpose of 'sport' would end and they would be further protected from being killed to the same extent on Scottish grouse moors.
Both mountain hares and foxes are killed in huge numbers so that grouse are protected, and ultimately shot in higher numbers for the entertainment of a few.
Robbie Marsland, Director of Revive partner League Against Cruel Sports Scotland, said:
“The League has been campaigning for many years for the Protection of Wild Mammals (Scotland) Act 2002 to be strengthened to really ban hunting. This Bill will compliment legislative commitments from the Scottish Government as well as going further to afford improved protection to other wild species, including mountain hares.”
Libby Anderson, Policy Advisor to Revive partner OneKind said:
“OneKind also welcomes Alison Johnstone's proposal to end the persecution of mountain hares, which are currently killed in their thousands on grouse moors. Modern wildlife laws need to keep up with public opinion, to recognise that these animals are sentient and that their welfare is appallingly compromised by these out of date practices."