Category Archives: Reports

A complete list of training opportunities for 2018
Deer and Gamebird Hunting Management in Norway – 2017
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Deer and Gamebird Hunting Management in Norway – 2017

In this context, I was particularly interested during my recent visit to Hogskolen I Hedmark, Norway and the associated structured course, to explore how hunting systems and natural wildlife resources were administrated in that country to inform my understanding as to how systems might be improved in the future in Scotland.

Approaches to Integrated Land Management – Norway 2017
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Approaches to Integrated Land Management – Norway 2017

While the vast majority of the land is under some form of management and is modified nature conservation and natural heritage interests appeared to be in a relatively healthy state. During the visit we were largely engaged with consideration of wildlife management for economic purposes (even in relation to protected species including large carnivores), we were able to consider wider ecosystem health and the role that played in maintaining healthy populations of different wildlife species

Grouse Surveys in Norway and Scotland – 2017
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Grouse Surveys in Norway and Scotland – 2017

In Norway, there is an annual monitoring programme of all grouse species that covers much of the country. Started in 2013, the Hønsefugl Portalen is a largescale partnership between NINA (Norwegian Institute for Nature Research), FeFo (a landowner enterprise in Finnmark, Northern Norway), Statskog (State landowner), Miljødirektoratet (Norwegian Environement Agency), HINT (Nordtrondelag University), Norges Fjellstyresamband (Norwegian Mountain Board who administer hunting rights on crown land) and Hedmark University. The initial project began in the 1950’s, walking transects and counting flushed birds, using the distance counting statistical method. It is now a web-based portal for monitoring both public and private land.

Ulv Ledelse i Norge (Wolf Management in Norway) – 2017
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Ulv Ledelse i Norge (Wolf Management in Norway) – 2017

I work for Scottish Natural Heritage and prior to this worked for the Deer Commission for Scotland. Wildlife management in Scotland is an important issue; culturally, economically, socially and increasingly politically. Learning about and seeing first-hand how Norway manages wildlife; the challenges, opportunities and some of the solutions they have found was a valuable experience for me that will influence both my professional and personal life.

Visitors and the countryside – Norway 2017
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Visitors and the countryside – Norway 2017

Visitors and the countryside in Norway   Robert Coleman – RSPB   First impressions count when it comes to visitor experiences and from the flight out to the flight home Norway made a lasting impression. Friendly people, fantastic landscapes and iconic wildlife…so where did we start… INDOORS!   Our first visitor experience in Norway was […]

Lynx – Norway 2017
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Lynx – Norway 2017

Over the past few years and after the successful reintroduction of beavers in Scotland, there have been talks and interest about the possibility of lynx reintroduction in Scotland. Therefore we were all keen to know more about the lynx ecology, management and conflict mitigations Norway. Norway has four main carnivores with some habitat where all of them co-exist.

Arctic Fox Reintroduction Programme
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Arctic Fox Reintroduction Programme

The arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) is categorised by the IUCN as Least Concern due to its circumpolar distribution in tundra and alpine habitats and a global population of several hundred thousand (IUCN, 2017). However, within Fennoscandia the situation is very different: populations have been at an unsustainable low since the late 1920s.

I personally found visiting the breeding centre and learning about the programme very interesting as I was able to draw parallels with my own work, which is to reintroduce red squirrels to the Northwest Scottish Highlands.

Southwest Norway 2016
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Southwest Norway 2016

The aim of the course was to give an understanding of land use in Southwest Norway, with a particular focus on forestry, game management, and conservation. Relevance has been heightened by recent trends in Scottish rural policy, seeking to redress the balance in land tenure between smaller-scale freehold, community land ownership, and the sporting interests on private estates. Visiting these upland areas of montane scrub in Norway was incredibly inspiring, showing us what we could do to restore habitats largely lost from the Scottish landscape.

Romanian Village Farming
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Romanian Village Farming

In Romania wildflower meadows carpet the land, different species of birds pop up constantly, butterflies abound and the air is alive with the sound of insects and frogs singing. During the first two days of our trip we were lucky enough to spend time on our guide Monica’s grandmother’s farm in the tiny village of Girbovita, where we visited the vine yard, hey meadows, orchards, vegetable garden and farmyard animals before sitting down to a delicious home grown lunch

Reintroduction Latvia 2016
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Reintroduction Latvia 2016

I knew that it was highly unlikely that I would see lynx in the wild during the visit to Latvia but nonetheless hoped that I may catch a glimpse or possibly see some tracks or scat. As it turned out the lynx remained elusive but being present in the forest where it was known that they lived had a powerful effect

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