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Species control agreements and orders

These set out measures that must be taken to control or eradicate an invasive non-native animal or plant.

Species control agreements (SCAs), which are voluntary, formalise what steps need to be taken, by whom and by when, to deal with invasive non-native species.

Species control orders (SCOs) are compulsory and can be used to compel certain actions in regard to invasive non-native species. These may be used in urgent situations or where an SCA has failed.

SCAs and SCOs may be made only by relevant bodies:

  • Scottish Ministers (including Marine Scotland)
  • Scottish Natural Heritage
  • Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA)
  • Forestry Commissioners

Emergency species control orders

Except in urgent situations, a relevant body must first offer an SCA to the owner or occupier of the land before making an SCO.

Where the relevant body believes the situation is urgent, it can make an emergency SCO.

Basis in legislation

SCAs and SCOs and the powers of access related to them are set out in the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended).

Find out more about SCAs, SCOs and the relevant bodies in the Code of Practice on Non-Native Species.

Find out more

Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981