Our Work

Country Sports

Country Sports

Scotland is an internationally renowned destination for country sports such as stalking, shooting and fishing, all of which are steeped in traditional and culture of the country. 

Well-managed country sports are a vital part of the rural economy and deliver a wide range of environmental and societal benefits. The sector provides 4400 FTE jobs and delivers benefits to species such as waders and heather. The country sports tourism sector has been estimated to be worth £155 million.  

Members are responsible for the management of deer numbers on their land and often work as part of collaborative management groups with their neighbours to ensure populations are at the optimal level to ensure a healthy population and do not cause damage to the land. 

SLE supports members to work in line with best practice guidance. This includes the Code of Good Shooting Practice, The British Game Alliance Standards, and Moorland Management Best Practice. SLE also supports the work of the Scottish Country Sports Tourism Group.

Information as relates to country sports during the Covid-19 pandemic is available here.


General Licences for 2022

As of 1 January 2022, new general licenses are in force. The 2022 general licences are broadly similar to those issued in 2021 and 2020, with no changes to target species. The links below provide further information, which is available on NatureScot's website.

There is also a requirement to comply with standing conditions when using general licences over certain special protected areas and special areas of conservation.