We are testing a new beta website for gov.scot go to new site

2014

2014 Seal Licences

Marine Scotland received 56 applications for seal licences and 53 licences have been granted: three licences are pending approval.

Table 1 below provides a full breakdown. (This information is correct as of 31 January 2014).

TABLE 1

           
 

Application Type

   

Licence Type

Seal Management Area

Protection of Health and Welfare

Prevention of Serious Damage

Total

Protection of Health and Welfare

Prevention of Serious Damage

Total

             

East Coast

0

7

7

0

6

6

Moray Firth

0

3

3

0

2

2

Orkney & North Coast

2

7

9

2

6

8

Shetland

6

0

6

6

0

6

South-West Scotland

2

2

4

2

2

4

Western Isles

9

2

11

9

2

11

West Scotland

12 4 16 12 4 16
             

Grand Total

31

25

56

31

22

53

The 31 licences issued for protection of health and welfare and one issued for prevention of serious damage, cover a total of 214 individual fish farms.

The maximum number of seals involved is 765 Grey and 240 Common. Table 2 below provides details. This maximum represents less than 0.7% of the Grey Seal population of 100,000 and slightly over 1% of the minimum Common Seal population of 20,500. The numbers are significantly lower than previous estimates proposed by non-government organisations at between 2,000 and 5,000. (This information is correct as at 31 January 2014.)

TABLE 2a

Grey Seals            

Seal Management Area

Grey Seals Applied For

PBR*

Grey Seals Granted

Grey Seals Shot:
First Quarter
Grey Seals Shot:
Second Quarter
Grey Seals Shot:
Third Quarter
Grey Seals Shot:
Fourth Quarter

East Coast

128

314

74

1 9 1 0

Moray Firth

239

174

90

3 12 4 6

Orkney & North Coast

330

1448

232

5 31 19 9

Shetland

198

236

105

5 8 9 6

South-West Scotland

66

57

25

0 0 0 0

Western Isles

188 387 116 6 7 2 2

West Scotland

188

386

123

5 5 1 8
               

Grand Total

1327

3002

765

25 72 36 31

The maximum number of Grey Seals allowed on licences granted in 2014 represents a more than 1% reduction on numbers involved in the previous year's licences, and a 25% reduction since the system was introduced in 2011.

TABLE 2b

Common Seals            

Seal Management Area

Common Seals Applied For

PBR*

Common Seals Granted

Common Seals Shot:
First Quarter
Common Seals Shot:
Second Quarter
Common Seals Shot:
Third Quarter
Common Seals Shot:
Fourth Quarter

East Coast

39

2

0

0 0 0 0

Moray Firth

24

17

10

1 2 2 1

Orkney & North Coast

39

17

6

0 0 1 0

Shetland

17

18

5

0 0 0 1

South-West Scotland

91

35

26

0 0 0 3

Western Isles

71 82 41 0 0 1 0

West Scotland

266

446

152

9 7 2 11
               

Grand Total

547

617

240

10 9 6 16

The maximum number of Common Seals allowed on licences granted in 2014 represents a nearly 10% reduction on numbers involved in the previous year's licences, and an over 24% reduction since the system was introduced in 2011.

  • The average level of shooting is around 20% for fourth year of operation.
  • 51% of all licences have shot no seals at all during 2014.
  • Licencees are following the principle that seals should only be shot as a last resort.
  • Around 39% of shooting has occurred at fish farms and 61% at fisheries during the fourth year.
  • Only 80 seals have been shot across 214 individual fish farms and 125 seals across over 40 river fisheries and netting stations during the third year.
  • There was an overall reduction in the level of shooting in 2014: 25% lower compared to 2013 and 56% lower compared to 2011 figures.
  • A full list of licences issued in 2014, by region and company, with the number of seals shot each quarter, by site, is available to download.