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The Rural Stewardship Scheme (Scotland) Regulations 2001

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Regulation 3(3)(a)

SCHEDULE 2MANAGEMENT ACTIVITIES

Column 1Column 2Column 3
Management activitySite requirementsManagement requirements

1.  Extensive management of mown grassland for birds.

A field used for growing an extensive crop of hay or silage.

a.The field must not be rolled, harrowed or grazed between 1st April and 30th June or until the crop has been secured, whichever is the later;

b.Mowing or the reintroduction of grazing must not take place before 1st July;

c.To minimise the risk of damage to young birds, hay and silage must be cut in accordance with scheme guidance;

d.Artificial fertiliser must not be applied to the field before 15th May. Farmyard manure and slurry may be applied up to 28th February and after 15th May;

e.A strip of uncut grass 2 metres wide must be left around the field boundary; and

f.Pesticides and herbicides may be applied to this strip only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers.

2.  Management of open grazed grassland for birds.

Areas of open in-bye grassland, subject to winter grazing to produce a short sward and with little or no tree cover around the site.

a.Livestock must be excluded for 6 consecutive weeks between 1st April and 15th June;

b.Harrowing or rolling must not be carried out between 1st April and 31st July;

c.Artificial fertiliser must not be applied to the field before 15th May. Farmyard manure and slurry may be applied up to 28th February and after 15th May;

d.Pesticides may be applied only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

e.Topping must not be carried out before 31st July;

f.A strip of untopped grass 2 metres wide must be left around the field boundary; and

g.Pesticides may be applied to this strip only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers.

3.  Extensive management of mown grassland for corncrakes.

A field used for growing an extensive hay or silage crop which is next to an early/late cover area managed for corncrakes or unharvested crop managed under the scheme.

a.The field must not be rolled, harrowed or grazed between 15th May and 31st July;

b.Mowing must not take place prior to 1st August;

c.To minimise the risk of injury to young birds, hay and silage must be cut in accordance with scheme guidance. A strip of uncut grass 2 metres wide must be left around the field boundary; and

d.Pesticides may be applied to this strip only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers.

4.  Management of early and late cover for corncrakes.

Reverted improved grassland or unimproved grassland on the in-bye with clumps of tall vegetation such as iris, nettles, cow parsley or rush. Each individual site must be at least 0.15 hectare in size and not be more than 1 hectare subject to a maximum area per undertaking of 5 hectares. Such sites must be adjacent to mown grassland managed for corncrakes under this scheme.

a.No grazing is permitted between 28th February and 30th September, except with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

b.At other times grazing must not exceed 0.3 livestock units per hectare, except with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers; and

c.Cutting of the area may only be undertaken with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers.

5.  Management of wet grassland for waders.

In-bye wet grassland.

a.(i)Livestock must be excluded from the site for 6 consecutive weeks between 1st April and 15th June; or

(ii)If no barrier exists between the site and adjoining pasture, overall grazing levels must not exceed 1.4 livestock units per hectare for 6 consecutive weeks between 1st April and 15th June;

b.If rushes occur within the site a programme of cutting, grazing or exceptionally, herbicide treatment to prevent the rushes dominating the site must be agreed with the Scottish Ministers. Note that all rushes should not be removed from the site; and

c.Artificial fertiliser or slurry must not be applied to the site. Farmyard manure may be applied up to 28th February and after 15th May.

6.  Management of species-rich grassland.

Species rich unimproved grassland on in bye land or grazed machair.

a.(i)The site must not be grazed or mown for 3 consecutive months between 15th March and 15th August; or

(ii)Where the particular environmental interest of a site would not be met by the approach in paragraph (i) above, a livestock management and grazing regime should be set out in a grazing plan to be agreed with the Scottish Ministers;

b.After 15th August, the grass must be grazed down or topped;

c.The site must not be used for supplementary feeding of stock; and

d.Farmyard manure or lime may be applied to the site only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers.

7.  Bracken eradication programme for species rich grassland, coastal or lowland heath.

Species-rich grassland, unimproved grassland, coastal or lowland heath of environmental interest and identified in the environmental audit as bracken-invaded.

A systematic programme of treatment and follow-up must be carried out, where necessary using an approved herbicide, in accordance with a bracken eradication programme (BEP) laid out in an approved BEP management plan.

a.

In year one, a detailed BEP management plan must be prepared that incorporates a map drawn to a scale of 1:10000 showing the extent of the invasion, the areas of bracken to be cleared over the life-time of the scheme plan, an estimate of the percentage cover and frond density of the bracken within each area at full frond stage (mid/late June on the west coast to early August in the eastern Borders) and the location of any sensitive species and habitats with appropriate buffer zones to ensure their conservation. Where cutting is to be the means of control no buffer zones are required but the map must show any areas with sensitive species and habitats and where birds are known to nest on the ground;

b.

As soon as the detailed BEP management plan has been prepared, the applicant or contractor must complete and submit the standard multi-agency application form (with a copy of the BEP management plan scale map showing the area(s) to be treated) to the Scottish Environment Protection Agency, Scottish Natural Heritage and the Local Authority environmental services department. The consultees must then be allowed a minimum of 15 working days to consider and respond to the application for consent;

c.

The applicant must then submit the letters of consent and the final version of the BEP management plan to the Scottish Ministers as part of their claim for the first year’s BEP management payment;

d.

In year two (or exceptionally in year one if all the requirements detailed in paragraphs (a), (b) and (c) above have been met), the applicant or contractor must carry out primary treatment involving the treatment of dense bracken with an approved herbicide using an appropriate method or by cutting twice during the growing season. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that the required prior notice is given to all appropriate consultees in advance of any aerial spraying and that the contractor is provided with a copy of the map to ensure that the treatment is carried out in accordance with the BEP management plan; and

e.

Follow-up action may be necessary involving repeated annual treatment to clear any bracken re-growth. Where chemical control is used, this normally requires a spot-treatment approach. Where cutting is the means of control, the programme of twice yearly treatments must continue for the duration of the BEP management plan.

8.  Creation and management of species rich grassland.

Eligible arable land.

a.Any existing grassland cover must be destroyed;

b.A programme agreed with the Scottish Ministers to establish a new sward must be implemented. This may include measures to reduce fertility and address weed problems;

c.The site must be sown with a low productivity grass and herb mix agreed with the Scottish Ministers to create a new sward. Seed of local provenance must be used wherever possible;

d.Except during years one to three, the site must not be mown or grazed between 15th April and 15th August. During years one to three on fertile sites, mowing, with disposal of cuttings may be required. In such cases, mowing may be permitted after 1st July with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

e.After 15th August, the grass must be grazed down or topped;

f.The site must not be used as a site for supplementary feeding of stock;

g.Fertiliser, slurry or farmyard manure must not be applied to the site; and

h.Pesticides may be applied only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers.

9.  Management of coastal heath.

Unimproved land bordering the sea containing characteristic moorland or species rich grassland vegetation dependent on salt spray or exposure.

a.Livestock must be excluded between 1st April and 31st August;

b.The site must be grazed between 1st September and 30th November at a level sufficient only to remove rank growth and lightly crop any dwarf shrubs. In any event grazing must not exceed 1.2 livestock units per hectare;

c.Between 1st December and 31st March any grazing is optional, but it must not exceed 0.15 livestock units per hectare except with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

d.The site must not be burnt except with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers; and

e.Fertiliser, slurry or farmyard manure must not be applied to the site.

10.  Management of lowland heath.

An area of lowland heath.

a.Bracken and scrub must be controlled so that cover does not exceed a total of 5%;

b.Livestock must be excluded between 1st November and 28th February; and

c.At other times grazing levels must not exceed 0.3 livestock units per hectare.

11.  Management of wetland.

Wetland on in-bye land (including salt marsh and reed beds).

a.(i)Livestock must be excluded from the site for 4 consecutive months between 1st April and 31st August; or

(ii)Livestock must be excluded from 1st April to 30th June and grazing in the period from 1st July to 30th September must not exceed 0.3 livestock units per hectare; or

(iii)Where the particular environmental interest of the site would not be met by the approach in either paragraph (i) or (ii) above, a livestock management and grazing regime must be set out in a grazing plan to be agreed with the Scottish Ministers;

b.The environmental audit must include a statement outlining the method of control of rank vegetation growth;

c.Grazing or mowing must be carried out in accordance with a plan agreed with the Scottish Ministers; and

d.No supplementary feeding may occur on the site.

12.  Management of lowland raised bogs.

An area of lowland raised bog – an isolated peat deposit over 1 metre thick that is surrounded by non-peat soils.

A management plan must be prepared which may include the following requirements, as appropriate–

a.

The blocking of existing ditches at intervals so as to raise or maintain the water table at or just below the surface of the vegetation (to prevent flooding of sites);

b.

The clearing of scrub and prevention of re colonisation;

c.

An agreement not to graze with cattle at any time;

d.

An agreement to exclude other livestock from 1st November to 28th February;

e.

An agreement not to stock at over 0.05 livestock units per hectare except with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

f.

An agreement not to undertake any supplementary feeding on the site;

g.

An agreement that no peat cutting will be carried out without the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers; and

h.

An agreement that no muirburn will be carried out on the site.

13.  Creation and management of wetland.

Eligible arable land or improved grassland where the raised water levels resulting from creation of wetland would not adversely affect other land or cause the erosion of river banks or be liable to cause damage to archaeology.

a.The site must be managed to ensure that it is normally saturated with water for a significant proportion of the year;

b.The site must not be mown or grazed for 3 consecutive months between 15th April and 15th August, after which rank growth must be controlled. On fertile sites, where practicable, mowing, with disposal of cuttings may be allowed between these dates with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

c.Fertiliser including slurry or farmyard manure must not be applied to the site;

d.Pesticides may be applied only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers; and

e.No supplementary feeding may occur on the site.

14.  Management of water margin.

In-bye land which borders still water or a watercourse having a bed width of not less than 0.6 metres and which –

a.

in the case of a site bordering still water, has a minimum width of 12 metres and a maximum width of 24 metres;

b.

in the case of a site bordering a watercourse with a bed width of less than 1.2 metres, has a minimum continuous width of 5 times the bed width of the watercourse, a minimum overall width of 6 metres and a maximum width of 12 metres; and

c.

in the case of a site bordering a watercourse with a bed width equal to or greater than 1.2 metres, has a minimum width of 6 metres and a maximum width of 12 metres on any one side.

a.

Livestock must normally be excluded. Exceptionally livestock grazing at no more than 0.6 livestock units per hectare may be permitted in September and October with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

b.

Where trees exist or are to be planted within a water margin, care must be taken to ensure that there will be no excessive shading of the water;

c.

The site must be maintained by the control of statutory weeds, giant hogweed and Japanese knotweed and, as the case may be, by clearing the watercourse of any obstacle;

d.

Fertiliser including slurry or farmyard manure must not be applied to the site;

e.

Pesticides may be applied with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

f.

Mowing of the site may be permitted with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers and where necessary to control rank vegetation of low environmental value; and

g.

No supplementary feeding may occur on the site.

15.  Management of flood plain.

A site that forms all or part of a flood plain where–

a.

part or parts of the flood plain are included in the agri-environment undertaking as the site of another management activity; and

b.

the flooding of the site would not adversely affect other agricultural land.

a.The natural flooding of the land must not be hindered;

b.Cultivation must not be carried out within 12 mean metres of the water’s edge (mean summer water level); and

c.Additional management specific to each site must be agreed with the Scottish Ministers.

16.  Moorland management.

A distinct block of moorland over which it is practical to implement a management programme.To carry out a suite of additional management practices as laid out in a moorland management plan, including shepherding, stock management and feeding practices to benefit the stated environmental interest.

17.  Stock disposal.

Moorland which is of environmental interest and would benefit from a reduced stocking density beyond the reduction required to rectify an overgrazing problem identified under the livestock subsidy schemes.

a.The requirements of the moorland management plan must be followed;

b.An agreed number of ewes must be removed from the site. Ewe numbers in the IACS business must be reduced by at least the number of ewes removed from the site in accordance with the moorland management plan and must not be increased on that site for the relevant period; and

c.The agreed number of ewes to be removed must not be more than a number equivalent to 250 hectares of moorland. For the purposes of the scheme, the removal of one ewe is deemed to benefit 0.8 hectare of moorland.

18.  Muirburn and heather swiping.

Moorland identified in a moorland management plan as appropriate for muirburn or a swiping programme.All muirburn must be undertaken in accordance with guidance approved by the Scottish Ministers.

19.  Bracken eradication programme for moorland.

Moorland of environmental interest and identified in the moorland management plan as bracken invaded.

A systematic programme of treatment and follow-up must be carried out, where necessary using an approved herbicide, in accordance with a bracken eradication programme laid out in an approved BEP management plan.

a.

In year one, a detailed BEP management plan must be prepared that incorporates a map drawn to a scale of 1:10000 showing the extent of the invasion, the areas of bracken to be cleared over the life-time of the scheme plan, an estimate of the percentage cover and frond density of the bracken within each area at full frond stage (mid/late June on the west coast to early August in the eastern Borders) and the location of any sensitive species and habitats with appropriate buffer zones to ensure their conservation. Where cutting is to be the means of control no buffer zones are required but the map must show any areas with sensitive species and habitats and where birds are known to nest on the ground;

b.

As soon as the detailed BEP management plan has been prepared the applicant or contractor must complete and submit the standard multi-agency application form (with a copy of the BEP management plan scale map showing the area(s) to be treated) to the Scottish Ministers, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency, Scottish Natural Heritage and the Local Authority environmental services department. The consultees must then be allowed a minimum of 15 working days to consider and respond to the application for consent;

c.

The applicant must then submit the letters of consent and the final version of the BEP management plan to the Scottish Ministers as part of their claim for the first year’s BEP management payment;

d.

In year two (or exceptionally in year one if all the requirements detailed in paragraphs (a), (b) and (c) above have been met), the applicant or contractor must carry out primary treatment involving the treatment of dense bracken with an approved herbicide using an appropriate method or by cutting twice during the growing season. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that the required prior notice is given to all appropriate consultees in advance of any aerial spraying and that the contractor is provided with a copy of the map to ensure that the treatment is carried out in accordance with the BEP management plan; and

e.

Follow-up action may be necessary involving repeated annual treatment to clear any bracken re-growth. Where chemical control is used this normally requires a spot-treatment approach. Where cutting is the means of control, the programme of twice yearly treatments must continue for the duration of the BEP management plan.

20.  Management of grass margin or beetlebank in arable fields.

Land forming a strip between 1.5 metres and 6 metres in width around or across arable fields.

a.On bare land the strip must be established by sowing a suitable mix of grass seed;

b.Fertiliser, slurry or farmyard manure must not be applied to the strips;

c.Scrub control and the use of pesticides is permitted only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

d.A sterile strip up to 0.5 metres in width may be created and maintained by rotovation and herbicide along the inner edge of the grass margin to provide young birds with an area on which to dry out and also to act as a buffer preventing the spread of weeds from the grass margin into the crop;

e.Grazing of the grass margin or beetlebank after harvest is permitted provided the average height of vegetation in the strip is not taken below 100 millimetres; and

f.The transfer of a beetlebank or grass margin to another field may only be carried out once during the five year cycle of the scheme.

21.  Management of conservation headlands.

Headlands with a minimum width of 6 metres around arable fields on which cereal, linseed, oilseed or protein crops are being grown. Sites adjoining fields where the cereal is to be harvested for arable silage before the grain is ripe are not eligible.

a.Herbicides and insecticides may be applied to the headlands only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers; and

b.To receive the Premium Payment there must be no application of nitrogenous fertiliser to the headland.

22.  Management of extended hedges.

A strip of arable or improved grassland situated alongside an existing or newly created hedge.

a.All livestock must be excluded and no arable cultivation may be carried out within a strip extending to at least 3 metres and up to 6 metres from the centre line of the hedge;

b.When the hedge is trimmed it must not be trimmed again for at least three years. Hedges may only be trimmed between 1st December and 1st March;

c.The grass in the strip may be cut only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

d.Fertiliser, slurry or farmyard manure must not be applied to the site;

e.Pesticides may be applied only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

f.The creation of an extended hedge must be undertaken at the relevant time during the first year of participation in the scheme and must be maintained and managed for a period of not less than five years; and

g.Where only one side of the hedgerow is managed under this prescription, for example, a roadside hedge, the other side must be trimmed no more frequently than once a year and only between 1st December and 1st March.

23.  Management of hedgerows.

Established or beaten up hedge.

a.Any gaps in the hedgerow must be filled by coppicing, laying or planting;

b.It must be trimmed no more frequently than every third year. Hedges may only be trimmed between 1st December and 1st March;

c.Pesticides must not be applied to the bottom of an established hedge. Spot treatment of weeds within 1 metre of any new hedge planting may be carried out using an approved herbicide but only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers;

d.The hedge bottom must not be mown;

e.Where a fence is required, it should be sited at least 1 metre from the centre line of the hedge; and

f.Both sides of a hedgerow require to be managed under the management of hedgerows option, i.e. a 2 metre strip will be managed 1 metre on either side of the centre line.

24.  Introduction or retention of extensive cropping.

A site comprising arable land or improved grassland in the Less Favoured Areas which does not exceed 4 hectares and subject to a maximum area per undertaking of 8 hectares.

a.(i)Ploughing, cultivation and the spreading of fertiliser may only take place between 28th February and 15th May (or such other date as may be specified under the Arable Area Payments Regulations 1996(1)). Exceptionally, for root crops, cultivation may be carried out after 15th May. Any nests located must be marked and avoided; or

(ii)If fodder rape or a similar crop is grown, cultivation may take place later in the year to establish the crop. Following cropping the area must not be ploughed or cultivated before 31st May in the following year;

b.Pesticides may be applied only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers. The maximum allowance of compound fertiliser is 250 kilogrammes per hectare per annum; and

c.Premium Payment

  • The management regime outlined at paragraph (a) or (b) above must be applied on the same site for a period of at least three years. In the final year of this arable rotation the cereal crop must be undersown with grass. The undersown crop will be subject to the usual management which must be maintained throughout the following season. If rolling of the grass crop is necessary, this must be carried out before 15th March. The undersown crop may be grazed or cut for hay or silage.

25.  Management of cropped machair.

Previously cropped machair which is brought into the required crop/fallow rotation in the first, second or third year of participation in the scheme by the sowing of a spring crop and has been subject to cultivation within the last 10 years.

a.The site must be included in an arable rotation, comprise at least 15% of the ploughable area of the machair and be sown to an arable crop or left fallow;

b.After the arable crop has been harvested, the site must be left fallow to revert to natural grassland for a minimum of two and a maximum of three years;

c.Ploughing and cultivation may only take place between 28th February and 15th May;

d.Ploughing depth must not exceed 100 millimetres;

e.Pesticides may be applied only with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers; and

f.Seaweed and farmyard manure may be applied in accordance with traditional practice.

26.  Unharvested crops.

Arable or improved grassland in plots of up to 1 hectare in size and totalling no more than 4 hectares over the whole unit.

a.In spring a cereal-based mixture must be sown, including at least one legume species (other crops, e.g. linseed and brassicas may be included in the mixture) and the area must not be ploughed down until after 15th March the following year;

b.Alternatively, a mixture of at least two crops must be sown, one of which must seed in the first year and one in the second. The area must be ploughed in after 15th March following the last seeding year; and

c.No pesticides may be applied.

27.  Management of scrub (including tall herb communities).

Grazed land with suppressed scrub or tall herb communities.

a.Grazing is not permitted except with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers. Such agreement will only be given in circumstances which encourage the regeneration of woodland or understorey and is not likely to be given more than once every three years;

b.Rhododendron growth must be controlled; and

c.The cutting of understorey vegetation must be avoided.

28.  Management of native or semi natural woodland.

Existing native or semi natural woodland (where Forestry Commission assistance is not appropriate to the site).

a.Grazing is not permitted except with the prior written agreement of the Scottish Ministers. Such agreement will only be given in circumstances which encourage the regeneration of woodland or understorey and is not likely to be given more than once every three years;

b.Standing dead timber must not be felled and dead timber must be left in the woodland;

c.Individual young trees must be provided with tree shelters where necessary;

d.Rhododendron growth must be controlled; and

e.Non-native tree species must be removed where these are detrimental to the character of the woodland and it is practical to do so. Any regrowth from the stumps must be suitably controlled in future years.

29.  Management of a site of archaeological or historic interest.

Land containing a site of archaeological or historic interest.

a.The management of the site must be agreed in advance with the Scottish Ministers and may include, as appropriate, controls over grazing, the cutting and removal of trees scrub and woody plants, the repair of erosion damage, the destruction and subsequent control of rabbits, the establishment of unploughed buffer zones, the realignment of fences or tracks, the re siting of hard standings or feeding sites and the restoration of and care for old orchard trees; or

b.For areas containing archaeological sites revealed only by crop marks, the site with a minimum 10 metre buffer zone beyond the visible remains must be taken out of cropping and sown to grass. The management of the site must be agreed in advance with the Scottish Ministers. When establishing the sward, the ploughing depth must not exceed 100 millimetres.

30.  Conservation management plan with special measures for small units.

Units up to 10 hectares of in bye on entry to the scheme and any apportionments but excluding any share in the common grazings.

Implementation of a detailed conservation management plan for the whole unit (i.e. entire in bye and any apportionments). The plan must–

a.

set out clear environmental objectives;

b.

explain the management to be undertaken to achieve these objectives by addressing all areas of activity on the unit (i.e. grazing management, winter feed production, cropping, stock management, management of special habitats/features etc., including a Biodiversity Action Plan habitats and species and pollution control); and

c.

To qualify for the Premium Payment the application must be one of at least four current applications to adopt this option from the same crofting community.

31.  Retention or introduction of cattle of native or traditional breed(s).

Units up to 10 hectares on entry to the scheme together with any apportionments but excluding any share in the common grazings. The unit must be participating in the management prescription, conservation management plan with special measures for small units.

a.The unit must support two or more breeding cows of traditional or native breed(s) on entry into the scheme and continue to do so for the lifetime of the agreement;

b.Premium Payment

  • Where no breeding cows are present or the existing herd has only one or no dams of either purebred or first cross native or traditional stock, two or more breeding cows of traditional or native breed(s) must be run on the unit by the end of the first plan year;

c.The number of sheep on the unit must be reduced to ensure no increase in overall stocking density.

(1)

S.I. 1996/3142 to which there are amendments not relevant to these Regulations.

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