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20 November, 2017

Strathbeg goose funding applications open

Applications open for the Loch of Strathbeg Goose Management Scheme 2017 today (Monday, 20 November), Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) announced today.

Every autumn, pink-footed geese fly 800 km from their breeding grounds in Iceland to Scotland. One of the first places they land is Loch of Strathbeg Special Protection Area, where numbers can reach 50,000.

In spring, as the geese prepare for their journey back to their breeding grounds, up to 20,000 feed on grass on neighbouring farmland, delaying the turnout of livestock and reducing yields of silage. The Loch of Strathbeg Goose Management Scheme was introduced to help meet the costs owners incur by allowing the geese to graze on their land undisturbed.

Russell Hooper, SNH Tayside & Grampian area office, speaking on behalf of the LGMG, said:

“We want to thank the scheme participants for their help in both conserving this internationally important species and the success of the scheme over the years.

“There was a good level of participation by local farmers last year, and goose use of scheme fields was the highest recorded in the five years of the current scheme format, so we have no plans to change the scheme in 2018. We encourage all landowners within the scheme boundary to apply to participate in the scheme.”

Application packs will be available from the SNH Aberdeen office from Monday, 20 November, and the deadline for applications will be on Friday, 15 December. For more information, contact Russell Hooper on 01224 266511 or email


Contact information

SNH Media

Notes to editors

Since 1994, a goose management scheme, in one form or another, has been in place at the Loch of Strathbeg, with the support of the Loch of Strathbeg Local Goose Management Group (LGMG). In 2013, decreased funding for all goose schemes in Scotland resulted in the boundary being reduced to cover the agricultural areas just north and south of the Loch of Strathbeg roost. Previous monitoring results showed that these areas have attracted higher goose usage. The distribution of the foraging geese was monitored again in spring 2015. Find the SNH commissioned report at:

Scottish Natural Heritage is the government's adviser on all aspects of nature and landscape across Scotland. Our role is to help people understand, value and enjoy Scotland's nature now and in the future. For more information, visit our website at or follow us on Twitter at

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