Guest Blog
  Guest Blog



17/05/2017
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Feral pigs – an update

Over the last 15 years, free-ranging, breeding populations of feral pigs have become established in Scotland. Following escapes or deliberate releases from wild boar and domestic pig farms, or from collections, at least three breeding populations have become established; in Dumfriesshire, in central Perthshire and in Lochaber. One-off sightings have come from as far apart
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25/04/2017
Photograph by: Jack Hughes and Lucy Eccles

New opportunities for hut culture in Scotland

(Picture by Jack Hughes and Lucy Eccles) 70 years ago Scotland had a thriving hutting culture. Hundreds of small wooden huts were dotted around the country. Families paid ground-rent to landowners in return for the opportunity to build a simple hut for recreational use. These charming low-impact buildings gave an opportunity for industrial workers on
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04/04/2017
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Making the Most of Our Land

This week’s guest blog has been written by Andrew Thin, chair of the new Scottish Land Commission. These are testing times for a small country on the fringes of Europe. Even without the potential ramifications of Brexit we will have our work cut out if we are to maintain our relative position in the world
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28/03/2017
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The grass is greener

After overcoming initial scepticism, a £10m anaerobic digestion plant is providing both eco-friendly power for local homes and a guaranteed source of income for nearby farmers When Charlesfield Farms wanted to diversify its business, the estate decided to join the green revolution. The result was a new £10 million anaerobic digestion (AD) plant that produces
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16/11/2016
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Hear the buzz from the Scottish Bee Company

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This week’s blog has been written by Iain & Suzie Millar of The Scottish Bee Company. It’s well known that bees are one of the world’s most important pollinating insects and play an integral role in food production and maintaining biodiversity. However, the dramatic decline in numbers has become a cause of national, if not
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13/10/2016
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Brexit: Five key areas for rural Scotland….

Today’s guest blog has been written by Fiona Cameron, Partner and Lois Newton, Associate at Gillespie Macandrew, on Brexit and looking at the possible impact on the rural sector. The dust may be settling following the Brexit Referendum, however there remains a great deal of uncertainty for the rural sector. Leaving the EU is likely
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21/09/2016
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The enemy of my enemy is my friend

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This week’s blog has been written by Professor Xavier Lambin of Aberdeen University. Professor Lambin is keen to explore in-situ in Scotland the impact of pine marten on Scotland’s squirrels, both red and grey. The hope, based on evidence from Ireland, is that pine marten – when in reasonable densities – act as a biological
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13/09/2016
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Nick Nairn – How to cook grouse

Today’s guest blog has been written by award-winning Scottish chef, Nick Nairn: Grouse remains for myself and many others, the king of game birds. I like grouse roasted on the bone for an all-round better taste and texture. Roast grouse is where traditional cooking and accompaniments can’t be beaten – bread sauce, game gravy, roast tatties.
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23/08/2016
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Food for thought on tenant farming

By Grierson Dunlop, an agricultural law solicitor, and member of Scottish Land & Estates’ Agricultural Holdings Group. The new Land Reform (Scotland) Act is taking root and as Ministers and civil servants grapple with the nuts and bolts of the legislation, many eyes will be focused on the implementation of Section 10 of the Act
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09/08/2016
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Some more thoughts on Brexit

Following on from our first “Some thoughts on Brexit” blog last week from Anne Gray, we now hear from Chris Savage, Factor for Cassillis Estate, on what Brexit means to rural Scotland and the questions that need to be answered: I think we can all agree that we live in a modern, progressive, democratic society?
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19/04/2016
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It’s not what you do, it’s the way that you do it

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Our guest writer for this week’s blog is Andrew Thin, Scotland’s Independent Advisor on Tenant Farming. The role of independent advisor on tenant farming is a short-term one, and Andrew– who was a member of the Agricultural Holdings Legislation Review Group – has been tasked by the Scottish Government with working with the three main
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17/11/2015
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The Future of Scottish Agriculture Part 2

The Scottish Government has begun a ‘National Discussion’ on the future of Scottish agriculture, and has published a vision document that they hope will stimulate discussion, which can be found on the Scottish Government website. As part of this debate, we will be posting a series of  thoughts from our members. To continue this discussion Johnnie Balfour,
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13/10/2015
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How do we connect urban youth with their rural heritage?

The Wilderness Foundation recognises that our youth face some of the greatest challenges of any generation through history, due in part to increasing urbanisation, economic crises and over population.  This includes their loss of a vital connection to the natural world thus impacting on wellbeing and sustainable futures. Therefore in 2013 they launched Imbewu Scotland,
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06/10/2015
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Practical implications to the proposed changes to succession

The laws on succession, while highly complex and technical, are not merely of academic interest but have significant practical implications, especially for farming families – both owners and tenants.  Much work has been undertaken by the Scottish Law Commission in relation to reviewing the law on succession and the issue is now to the fore
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10/09/2015
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Wildfires: Prevention Better than Cure – by Michael Bruce

Large, intense wildfires pose a threat to people, property, and conservation interests.  They need a lot of resources to extinguish and are therefore also expensive to put out. We have had a run of bad fire seasons, with multiple landscape scale fires in 2011, 2012 and 2013, especially in the spring period. Questions are being
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11/08/2015
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Landowners are the key to a prosperous farming future

Well here we are, it’s August, and there’s only 19 Fridays left until Christmas – what a cheery thought for the day! Santa will soon be starting to compile his naughty or nice list, and ponder which presents he will leave for each under the tree. For Scottish landowners, it may seem that the decision
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27/07/2015
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Sporting Rates implications for farmers

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The Land Reform Bill is a beast of many heads and one must be careful not to focus on the biggest while a smaller one unexpectedly bites. The focus of the Bill for many farmers will likely be the agricultural holdings section. However, anyone who owns or occupies land should not overlook section six which
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06/07/2015
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Being a laird doesn’t make me a villain

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As someone who owns a 13,000 acre Highland estate, there is no shortage of people who will regard me as one of the ‘too few who own too much’ of Scotland. Critics may dismiss me as an out of touch ‘laird’, detached from the local community indulging myself in my own private playground. It is
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15/06/2015
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European adventures in biodiversity

My father always contended that Britain’s best entry into Europe was on the 6th June 1944.  His opinion was somewhat influenced by the fact that he fought through the Normandy campaign, so perhaps he had a point. Quite what he would have made of my presence at EU Green Week, held in Brussels between 3rd
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28/05/2015
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Why Scotland must not dance with wolves – by Magnus Linklater

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Bringing back the lost predators would be a disaster for a truly endangered species — our embattled farmers. It is 300 years since the last wolf was killed in Scotland, shot by a gamekeeper in Sutherland after a government-backed campaign to eradicate them. No one regretted their passing. In the Highlands, they were regarded as
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03/11/2014

Fisheries Management Demonstration Day – Delegate Blog

2014 has been an especially tough year for Scottish anglers in pursuit of Atlantic Salmon, it is now more imperative than ever for fisheries to have strong management plans, alongside fishery trusts to ensure our beloved sport is protected for the future. Scottish Land and Estates has set out to provide demonstration days on fisheries
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Authors

Guest Blog

Feral pigs – an update
Latest posts
Anne Gray

It’s time for solutions…
Latest posts
David Johnstone

Stiff challenges and real opportunities – an update from our Chairman
Latest posts
Andrew Midgley

A new direction for Scottish land management
Latest posts

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