Terms of Reference for the Scottish Seals Forum
The following terms of reference and mechanisms were developed on the basis of the discussions at the initial meeting and subsequently agreed at a meeting in January 2003.
The Seals Forum will bring stakeholders together to exchange information relevant to the management of Scottish seal populations and develop a co-ordinated approach which:
meets the UK's nature conservation obligations;
seeks to minimise the economic loss to fisheries and fish farms;
seeks to maximise the economic benefit from tourism; and
seeks to minimise any potential conflict between these objectives.
In this context the Forum will:
disseminate information on the latest research on Scottish seal populations, their interactions with commercial fisheries and fish farms, and on mitigation measures;
inform the development of future seals research proposals with a view to encouraging collaboration and co-ordination of the various interests involved;
encourage the systematic collection and exchange of information about seal damage and existing local seal management arrangements including in and around SACs; and
encourage and disseminate good practice on local seal management schemes for specific populations in defined geographical areas, within a national context.