The Scottish Rewilding Alliance, is calling on the Scottish Greens to make the trial reintroduction of lynx and the widespread relocation of beavers a core part of any agreement they reach with the Scottish National Party.
The organisation which aims to see Scotland become the first rewilding nation claim that public opinion agrees with them. 1,071 Scottish adults 16 and over were polled by Survation between 28 October-3 November 2020.
Steve Micklewright, Scottish Rewilding Alliance Convenor and Chief Executive of Trees for Life. said:
“The Scottish Greens have committed to restoring nature through rewilding, including a trial lynx reintroduction. If they reach an agreement with the SNP that includes this commitment, many will see this as a sign they can achieve real change through cooperation.
“A trial reintroduction of lynx will have very strong public support, and there would be no clearer signal that Scotland intends to become the world’s first Rewilding Nation.”
The lynx, about the size of a large Labrador dog, would be a way of controlling deer numbers, say the supporters.
Beavers create wetlands that can reduce flooding, improve water quality, and benefit fish and other wildlife. But since the Government legally protected beavers in 2019, its nature agency NatureScot has issued dozens of killing licences – resulting in 20% of the Scottish population being killed in 2019 alone.
Steve Micklewright said:
“Nearly all of these beavers could have been relocated to parts of Scotland where local landowners and communities want the benefits they bring, including reducing the risk of flooding. A deal between the Greens and SNP deal must tackle this needless waste of life.”