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Species licensing

A licence allows somebody to carry out an action in relation to a protected species that might otherwise be against the law.  Follow the links below to find out more about licensing for different types of plant and animal.

Licences can only be issued for specific purposes  PDF document  depending on the legislation under which a particular species is protected.  Scottish Natural Heritage is responsible for almost all species licensing in Scotland with the exception of seal licensing, and some areas of whale and dolphin licensing and fisheries, all of which are dealt with by Marine Scotland external site .

Applying for a licence

Depending on what you want to do you can follow the links below for more information, consult our guidance list or find an application form.  Licence applications and supporting documentation should be emailed to licensing@snh.gov.uk.  If you want to speak to a licensing officer you can call our licensing helpline on 01463 725364.  It might also be worth checking out our list of frequently asked questions.

If you currently hold a licence which you wish to renew and have submitted a return for this licence, or if you wish to amend your licence you can:

Licensing turnaround times

The current average turnaround time for application is 11.89 days (average of June to August 2016 inclusive).  Please note that this figure varies depending on the type of application and individual turnaround times are also highly dependent on the quality of the application forms and supporting documentation submitted.  We intend to produce a more detailed breakdown of turnaround times for different licence types shortly.

Scottish Primrose (Primula scotica). İLorne Gill/SNH. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk/copyright

Plant licensing

Several of our plants and fungi are protected. Find out what needs a licence and how to apply for one.

Captive European Otter (Lutra lutra). İLorne Gill. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk.

Mammal (non deer) licensing

A number of mammals from bats to water voles are protected. Find out what needs a licence and how to apply for one.

Deer Stalker, early morning, with trees and mountains in the distance. İSNH. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk.

Deer licensing

Find information on when you need an authorisation to cull deer, the 'Fit and Competent Register', venison dealer returns and statutory returns

Lesser black-backed gull. İLorne Gill/SNH. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk/copyright

Bird licensing

All wild birds are protected. Find out what needs a licence and how to apply for one.

Natterjack Toad. İSNH. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk/copyright

Amphibian and reptile licensing

Most of our amphibians and reptiles are protected. Find out what needs a licence and how to apply for one.

A female Atlantic Salmon (Salmo salar) leaping up a waterfall, River Almond.  İLorne Gill/SNH. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk/copyright

Fish licensing

A few of our fish are protected. Find out what needs a licence and how to apply for one.

Pearl bordered fritillary (Boloria euphrosyne) butterfly. İLorne Gill/SNH. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk/copyright

Invertebrate licensing

Several invertebrate species are protected. Find out what needs a licence and how to apply for one.

Muirburn patterns on a heather covered hill near Abington, Southern Uplands. İP&A Macdonald/SNH. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk/copyright

Muirburn licensing

Find information on the licensing of muirburn out of season.

Captive Scottish Wildcat (Felix sylvestris) at the Highland Wildlife Park.  İLorne Gill/SNH. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk/copyright

European protected species licensing

Certain animals and plants in Scotland are given strict protection as European Protected Species. Find out more about licensing and these species.

Grey Seal. İLorne Gill/SNH. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk/copyright

Species licensing A-Z

Use our A-Z list to find guidance and information on a particular species.

 İLorne Gill/SNH. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk/copyright

Forms and guidance

Licence application forms, return forms, renewals, guidance notes and licensing information.

Red Squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) feeding on a fallen log at Morton Loch. İLorne Gill/SNH. For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk/copyright

Licensing news

What is new in licensing ?

Rhododendron ponticum. İLorne Gill/SNH .For information on reproduction rights contact the Scottish Natural Heritage Image Library on Tel. 01738 444177 or www.snh.gov.uk/copyright

Non-native species licensing

Information on non-native species licensing

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Species licensing FAQs

Have you got a licensing related query? Try our FAQs.



Last updated on Wednesday 31st August 2016 at 17:15 PM. Click here to comment on this page