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Kielder preferred site for Lynx reintroduction

The Lynx UK Trust has announced its preferred site for a trial release of Eurasian Lynx is the Kielder Forest straddling the border with England.  The Lynx UK Trust is a charity that has ambitions to see lynx reintroduced to the UK.  However, it has not as yet submitted a licence application to either Scottish Natural Heritage or Natural England to be allowed to make such a move. 

Gaining a licence is no easy matter. In Scotland an application would have to go through the Scottish Forum for Species Reintroductions which is a balanced group of land management interests, conservation interests and Government.  The Lynx UK Trust has picked the site they say because of its lack of human population, large deer population and limited road network.  Its announcement precedes local consultation on the reintroduction which is also a pre-requisite of a licence application.  Scottish Land & Estates is available to assist any members with concerns over the proposals, particularly those close to Kielder simply contact Anne Gray at headquarters This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or Regional Manager Rachael Wright  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  You may also be interested to see our national stakeholder consultation response to the Lynx UK Trust sent at the end of last year – http://www.scottishlandandestates.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=4748:lynx-uk-trust-lynx-reintroduction-scottish-land-a-estates-express-concerns-over-lynx-reintroduction-proposal&catid=98:species-reintroduction&Itemid=131  In that response we raised serious concerns over both the economic and ecological case for this particular proposal.  Our main points are summarised below:-

  • We recognise that the reintroduction of former native species to Scotland, and the UK more generally, is a legitimate topic for discussion and debate.
  • We have a number of concerns with regard to this particular proposal for the reintroduction of lynx.
  • Most notably we feel that the timing of this proposal is premature given where Scotland is with other reintroductions, and indeed with the conservation of existing native species such as wildcat and red squirrel.
  • We have considerable concerns about the robustness of the public attitudes survey and the economic studies that support this proposal.
  • It seems unlikely to us that there will be a willingness for the public purse to support a long-term livestock compensation scheme.
  • We are not convinced of the benefits to lynx conservation itself of some of the proposed reintroduction sites.
  • We would like to see greater consideration of the impact on the pheasant and partridge shooting industry in the UK.
  • Consequently we are not able to support this proposal.

 

 

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