Predator Control

Date published: 19 January, 2022

For recent changes to this guidance, please see the bottom of the page.

The aim of this option is to benefit ground-nesting birds, such as black grouse and waders which are vulnerable to predation, by legally controlling crows, foxes, stoats and weasels.

Permanent grassland or rough grazing is eligible if it is either:

  • within or immediately adjacent to a designated site where the qualifying interests include ground-nesting birds, or
  • contains, or is adjacent to, active black grouse lek(s). Predator control can be funded within a 1.5 kilometre radius of leks

You must combine this option with one of the following options:

You can check if this option is available on your holding here.

You, or the person undertaking predator control on your behalf, must be registered with NatureScot (SNH) for bird trapping. To obtain a registration number, please visit the NatureScot trap registration website. For those undertaking snaring you are required to obtain an Operator Identification Number from Police Scotland.

You must prepare and submit for approval a predator control plan. The plan must detail the location, area and method of proposed predator control activity (crows only, or mammals and crows). It must also detail the personal identification number of the person operating the traps, and identify the proposed trap or snare locations on a map.

For crow control only

  • you must read and comply with the current General Licence to kill or take certain birds for the conservation of wild birds (see GL01/2020).
  • where using the General Licence on certain designated sites you must read, understand and abide by certain standing conditions.
  • you must purchase the agreed number of Larsen traps by the 1 June of the first year of your contract. (Larsen mate and Larsen pod traps are not eligible for payment)
  • traps must be tagged with the NatureScot (SNH) operators registration number clearly visible
  • each spring, you must set and operate the trap(s) as detailed in your predator control plan
  • you must maintain a diary of the activity undertaken, including the current location of traps and dates that traps are set, or unset

you must submit a report each year of the activity undertaken to RPID

For mammal and crow control

  • where crow trapping you must comply with the conditions for crow control described above
  • when trapping stoats you must read and comply with the current General Licence to use certain traps to kill stoats for the conservation of wild birds or the prevention of serious damage to livestock (GL14/2020). (See more details in this webpage)
  • you must understand that as of 1 April 2020 you may no longer use other trap types to catch stoats (eg Fenn-type, WCS tube trap, BMI Magnum models); if you use these types of traps for control of other species and you catch stoats you will be breaking the law.
  • you must manage the same location and extent each year for the duration of your contract
  • you must set and operate traps and / or snares in the locations detailed in your predator control plan
  • snares must be tagged with your Police Scotland authorised Operator Identification Number clearly visible
  • you must maintain a diary of the activity undertaken, including the current location of traps and / or snares, dates that they are set and unset, or removed and dates of any lamping work
  • you must submit a report each year of the activity undertaken to RPID

You can claim:

  • for crow control: £259.60 per trap operated up to a maximum of ten traps per contract
  • for mammal and crow control programme: £2.18 per hectare

Control may take place out with the nesting period but only work undertaken from 1 March until 30 June is eligible for payment.

The inspectors will check:

For crow control only:

  • you have purchased the agreed number of Larsen traps by 1 June of the first year of your contract. (Larsen mate and Larsen pod traps are not eligible for payment)
  • traps have been tagged with the operators registration number from Nature Scot (SNH) clearly visible
  • each spring, you have set and operated the trap(s) as detailed in your predator control plan
  • you have maintained a diary of the activity undertaken, including the current location of traps and dates that traps are set, or unset
  • you have submitted a report each year of the activity undertaken

For mammal and crow control:

  • you have managed the same location and extent each year for the duration of your contract
  • you have set and operated traps and / or snares in the locations detailed in your predator control plan
  • crow traps have been tagged with your registration number from NatureScot (SNH) clearly visible
  • snares have been tagged with your Operator Identification Number from Police Scotland
  • you have maintained a diary of the activity undertaken, including the current location of traps and / or snares, dates that they are set and unset, or removed and dates of any lamping work
  • you have submitted a report each year of the activity undertaken

Section Change
Application requirements Updated Predator Control Plan.

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