Land and sea management

​Scotland’s land, freshwater, seas and wildlife are vital to our economy. We support good management and access to the outdoors.

​Scotland’s nature and landscapes bring many benefits. Good management of all land uses – from farmland to forests – will secure these for the future. Even our rocks and soils demand attention: they’re the basis for life above ground. Habitat networks are increasingly important in the face of climate change.

It’s also crucial to maintain the usual high quality of our lochs and rivers. Their condition can have major impacts for biodiversity, health, enjoyment of the countryside and the economy. Careful management can also help to restore poorer quality freshwater to a good status.

Our coasts and seas support a wealth of habitats and species, and generate more than £2.2 billion annually for the Scottish economy. To ensure a healthy and productive future for our marine environment, we help to manage the many competing interests at sea.

Everyone has rights of responsible access to most land and water in Scotland. Technical advice on access management can help land managers to respond appropriately. NatureScot also works hard to help all of Scotland’s people share the benefits of enjoying the outdoors.

Wildlife management doesn’t just protect species and habitats at risk. It also encourages people to get outdoors, and supports local businesses and wildlife tourism. We are the Scottish Government’s lead adviser on wildlife management.

Nature conservation may involve tackling pests, diseases and unwelcome plants. We offer advice on integrated pest management and guidance on disease in deer.

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