Publication - Progress report

Review of the operation of the seal licensing system under the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010: report

This report considers all aspects of the operation of the seal licensing system during the period from 2011 to 2014.

Review of the operation of the seal licensing system under the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010: report
Annex 2 Seal Licences 2012

Annex 2 Seal Licences 2012

Marine Scotland received 63 applications for seal licences and 61 licences were granted. Table 1 below provides a full breakdown.

TABLE 1

Seal Management Area Application Type Licence Type
Protection of Health and Welfare Prevention of Serious Damage Total Protection of Health and Welfare Prevention of Serious Damage Total
East Coast 0 9 9 0 9 9
Moray Firth 0 5 5 0 5 5
Orkney and North Coast 2 7 9 2 7 9
Shetland 7 0 7 6 0 6
South West Scotland 2 2 4 2 2 4
West Scotland 11 6 17 11 6 17
Western Isles 10 2 12 9 2 11
Grand Total 32 31 63 30 31 61

The 30 licences issued for protection of health & welfare and 1 issued for prevention of serious damage, cover a total of 230 individual fish farms

The maximum number of seals involved is 878 grey and 289 common. Table 2 below provides details. This maximum represents less than 1% 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.

TABLE 2a Grey Seals

Seal management area Grey seals applied for PBR* Grey seals granted Grey seals shot: 1st quarter Grey seals shot: 2nd quarter Grey seals shot: 3rd quarter Grey seals shot: 4th quarter
East Coast 849 277 114 6 12 21 3
Moray Firth 836 152 100 7 24 11 1
Orkney & North Coast 475 959 280 28 62 35 15
Shetland 341 163 109 17 9 8 39
Western Isles 238 408 123 13 7 4 7
South West Scotland 63 45 26 3 0 0 0
West Scotland 206 297 126 12 1 8 6
Grand Total 3008 2301 878 86 115 87 71

The maximum number of grey seals allowed on licences granted in 2012 represents a 14% reduction on numbers involved in the previous year's licences.

The twelve month total of 359 grey seals represents only 0.3% of the overall grey seal population of 100,000.

TABLE 2b Common Seals

Seal management area Common seals applied for PBR* Common seals granted Common seals shot: 1st quarter Common seals shot: 2nd quarter Common seals shot: 3rd quarter Common seals shot: 4th quarter
East Coast 106 2 0 0 0 0 0
Moray Firth 82 20 19 6 0 1 3
Orkney & North Coast 58 18 7 1 1 1 0
Shetland 32 18 6 0 0 0 1
Western Isles 120 54 43 2 0 0 0
South West Scotland 104 35 30 8 0 0 0
West Scotland 310 442 184 12 11 20 7
Grand Total 812 589 289 29 12 22 11

The maximum number of common seals allowed on licences granted in 2012 represents a 8% reduction on numbers involved in the previous year's licences.

The twelve month total of 74 common seals represents only 0.3% of the overall common seal population of 20,500.

Summary

The average level of shooting is around 37% for the second year of operation.

31% of all licences have shot no seals at all during the second year.

Around 48% of shooting has occurred at fish farms and 52% at fisheries during the second year.

Only 208 seals have been shot across 230 individual fish farms and 225 across over 40 river fisheries and netting stations during the second year.

There was an overall reduction of 5% in the level of shooting in the second year of licensing, compared to the first.


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