Sheep worrying incidents down thanks to recent campaign

Sheep worrying during the month of April decreased significantly thanks to a special springtime campaign.

The initiative took place in the Flotterstone Glen area of the Pentland Hills Regional Park highlighting to dog owners their access rights and responsibilities.

During the initiative, Pentland Hill Rangers and Police Officers patrolled the Flotterstone Glen area - advising the public on how best to control their four-legged friends.

Police patrolled during the weekends, using specialised off-road vehicles to access the upland sections.

Around 600 leaflets were handed out to the public, highlighting the dangers of sheep worrying.

And during the recent crackdown, the number of incidents dropped by 100 per cent at Eastside Farm and around 60 per cent at Kirkton Farm.

During the lambing season there are usually a number of sheep worrying incidents in the area. Sheep and lambs are attacked, which lead to serious injuries and in some cases the death of animals.

Allowing a dog to chase or attack sheep is not only a criminal offence; it also directly affects the livelihood of farmers.

Susan Falconer, Senior Countryside Ranger, said: 

"This has been a very successful partnership between the Rangers Service, Lothian and Borders police and local farmers. It is an example of the strength of people working together and helping each other out in a very practical way. We would like to thank everyone involved for making this work."

Community Sergeant Michele Lindsay from Lothian and Borders Police, said:

"I am delighted that this initiative has been such a success in a short number of weeks. Throughout the campaign, our officers have been encouraged by the positive response from members of the public, and we would like to thank them for their assistance."

Alistair Cowan who own a sheep farm in the area, added: "This has made a huge difference to public perception this lambing time, having had several incidents over the last few years but this year -none."

With lambing season coming to a close for the year, the  Regional  Park  would like to remind dog owners of their responsibilities:

Never let your dog worry of attack livestock;

Keep your dog under close control at all times and on a short lead if near sheep;

It is a criminal offence to allow your dog to chase or attack sheep, no matter the time of year;

Enjoy your visit. The Pentland Hills is a wonderful place to visit. Please respect those who live and work in the  Regional  Park  by always keeping your dog under proper control.

For further information, please contact the  Pentland  Hills  Regional  Park  on 0131 445 3383


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