Saturday, 20 May 2017

A local resident reported seeing someone flying a drone along beside the cliffs at Petticowick on Thursday night. It was causing great disturbance to the nesting seabirds on the cliffs in the area. I hope that the pilot was not aware that he was breaking the law on two counts - firstly by flying the drone over NTS land without our permission, and secondly by causing disturbance to nesting birds.

With drones now being readily available at a resonable price on the High Street..., their use over St Abb's Head and other NTS land by uninformed individuals is becoming more common. This is why the NTS has produced a policy concerned the flying of drones on or over our land. 
St Abb's Head is a place where people come to get away from it all and enjoy nature in the raw, so we are very reluctant to bring too many man-made items, like signs, onto the reserve. We have tried hard to spread the NTS policy on drones via Social Media, but it is apparent that the message just isn't getting out to all the right people, so we are, reluctantly, having to put up signs in order to make sure that drone owners are informed about our policy and the law.

We have not gone down the line of a blanket ban, as others have, because there is no doubt that drone images are spectacular, giving a totally different perspective. Also, there are ways that drones might be useful in our conservation management of the property. However, the reserve is a no drone zone during the bird nesting season, and outwith this we require poeple to get permission from the Property Manager (ie me) first. In this way we can ensure that we keep both our wildlife and our visitors safe and free from disturbance.

Here's a copy of the signs that will be going up this weekend. Please help us protect our nesting birds from disturbance by sharing this. Thank you. Liza.

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