Published: Tuesday, 09 April 2013
Sheep Worrying in the Regional Park - keep dogs under close control
Throughout April, the Regional Parks farmers will be busy with lambing. At this time of year the sheep move to lower areas of the Park to give birth and there will be over 3000 lambs born! Sheep within the Park are not always confined to a traditional field; the sheep are free roaming over the hills which means visitors can come into direct contact with them wherever they are within the Park.
In recent years there has been an increase in the number of sheep worrrying incidents within the Park, in particular in the areas of Flotterstone, Eastside, Dreghorn, Bonaly, Harlaw and Threipmuir.
In order to combat the problem, Lothians and Borders Police will be out every weekend during lambing season, on thier quad bikes, talking to dog owners and handing out leaflets. The Regional Park has put out large red highly visable signs giving advise to dog owners. Please adhere to the signs.
Under the Dogs (Protection of Livestock) Act, 1953, if a dog worries livestock on any agricultural land, the owner of the dog, and, if it is in the charge of a person other than its owner, that person also, shall be guilty of an offence. Sheep worrying includes attacking, chasing or injuring an animal.
During lambing season, please keep your dog under close control at all times, or on a short lead. The only location in the Regional Park that is not grazed by sheep, is Hillend Country Park.
Please be vigilant at this time of year.
Sheep Worrying Incidents
Since the start of April 10 sheep have already been killed in the fields on the south side of Harlaw Reservoir.