Improving the protection of wild mammals: consultation analysis

Report analysing responses to the 2017 to 2018 Improving the protection of wild mammals consultation.

2. Description of the respondents

2.1 This chapter provides information about the respondents to the consultation and the responses submitted.

Number of responses received, and number included in the analysis

2.2 The consultation received 18,792 submissions. This included 295 'substantive' ( i.e. personalised) submissions and 18,497 responses submitted through five different campaigns (described in detail below.) [4] Among the substantive submissions, it was found that five individual respondents had submitted two different (substantive) responses. These were combined into a single amalgamated response for each of the five individuals and the individuals have been counted only once for the purposes of the analysis. Thus, the analysis was based on 18,787 responses – 98% of which comprised campaign responses. [5] (See Table 2.1 below.)

Table 2.1 Responses included in the analysis

Response type n %
Substantive responses 290 2%
Campaign responses 18,497 98%
Total responses 18,787 100%

About the respondents (substantive responses only)

2.3 Substantive responses were received from 265 individuals and 25 organisations or groups. (See Table 2.2.)

Table 2.2: Types of respondent (substantive responses only)

Respondent type n %
Individuals 265 91%
Organisations 25 9%
Total 290 100%

2.4 All but two of the organisational respondents fell into one of two categories: (i) those with an interest in countryside management and countryside sporting (n=13) and (ii) animal welfare charities and campaign groups (n=10). (See Table 2.3.)

Table 2.3: Organisational respondents (substantive responses only)

Organisation type n %
Countryside management and sporting organisations 13 52%
Animal welfare charities and campaign groups 10 40%
Other organisational respondents 2 8%
Total 25 100%

2.5 A complete list of organisational respondents is provided in Annex 2 of this report.

Campaign responses

2.6 As noted above, a number of organisations co-ordinated responses among their members and supporters. These 'campaign responses' were based on a standard text provided by the campaign organiser and were submitted to the Scottish Government either by email or through a download facility made available to the Scottish Government from the campaign organiser's website. In each case, respondents could simply add their name and contact details to the standard response provided by the campaign organiser, and then submit their message. Such responses are referred to as 'standard campaign responses'. Alternatively, respondents could edit the standard campaign response or add their own comments. These personalised responses, submitted via a campaign, are referred to as 'non-standard campaign responses', and are included among the other substantive responses received in the consultation (see paragraph 2.2).

2.7 This consultation received 18,497 responses submitted through five different campaigns. In general, campaign respondents supported the suggestions and recommendations made by Lord Bonomy in the review report and / or they called for a further strengthening of the law in Scotland beyond the recommendations made by Lord Bonomy. While some of these respondents directly addressed the consultation questions (both open and closed), others raised additional issues, calling for further changes to the legislation. These responses raised several common points which are discussed in Chapter 12 of this report in relation to Question 7 (any other comments). See Table 2.4.

Table 2.4: Overview of campaigns

Campaign organiser Submission method / format Consultation questions addressed by standard campaign text Number of standard submissions
International Fund for Animal Welfare ( IFAW) Downloaded from third-party website Qs 1(1.1-10) to 6 (all closed and open questions) 2,059
OneKind and League Against Cruel Sports Email Qs 1.2, 1.10, 3, 7 (comments only) 5,655
OneKind and League Against Cruel Sports (members outside of Scotland) Email Qs 1.10, 7 (comments only) 9,063
Scottish Green Party Email Qs 1.1*, 1.2*, 1.3*, 1.10, 4*, 6*, 7 (some closed questions / comments) 1,705
Animal Concern Email Qs 1.10, 2, 7 (comments only) 15
Total campaign responses 18,497

* Indicates a response to the closed (tick-box) question only.

2.8 Full texts of the standard responses from all five campaigns are provided at Annex 3.

Response rates

2.9 As noted in Chapter 1, not all respondents answered all the consultation questions. In addition, some respondents answered the tick-box (closed) questions without providing further comments; others provided comments without answering the preceding tick-box questions. Annex 4 provides details of the number of substantive responses received for each question.

2.10 Among the substantive responses, response rates were lower for the open questions than the closed questions. For example, each of the closed questions was answered by between 62% and 73% of respondents, whereas the response rate for open questions generally varied between 42% and 59%.

2.11 The only exception to this was in relation to Question 7 – the final consultation question – which asked for any other comments. This open question had a response rate of 87%, the highest of all the questions in the consultation questionnaire. This is because the non-standard campaign responses received by the Scottish Government were entered into the online consultation response form in their entirety at Question 7. In fact, some of the material in these responses relates to earlier questions. Therefore, the response rates shown in Annex 4 should be treated as indicative only.


Back to top