Respect our wildlife

Learn more about how to respect the wildlife you are observing in Scotland

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Wildlife watching can be magical.

For many people, it's a thrilling experience to see animals in the wild, and for some, it's the highlight of their trip. In Scotland, many species are protected by law and if disturbed may abandon an area or fail to reproduce owing to stress. For your safety and theirs keep a respectful distance. The main goal is to minimise disturbance. Encounters should be on an animals terms, if walking in protected areas keep your dogs on leads, be aware of noise pollution and do not come between a young and their mother.

We have put together some simple tips and links that will help you on your journey as a responsible visitor and we would like to thank you for taking the time to read about ‘Your Commitment’ to respect our wildlife:



If you witness a suspected wildlife crime in action or a suspect is nearby, call 999 immediately and ask for the police. For all other enquiries, the non-emergency 101 number should be used to contact your local police. If you feel that you would rather remain anonymous, you can call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

As the police are the lead enforcement agency for wildlife crime, you should also follow up by ensuring that the appropriate regional Wildlife Crime Liaison Officer has been informed that a wildlife crime has been reported.