29 June 2012

Environment Minister Launches Deer Website

Stewart Stevenson, Scotland's Minister for the Environment and Climate Change, launched a unique educational website today (29 June) at the Scone Game Fair.

The Deer Education Zone is an interactive website for school children and teachers, commissioned by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) on behalf of the Scottish Venison Partnership. The project gives teachers and pupils information on a topic many won't have discovered before, despite it being an important part of Scotland's history and culture.

The Deer Zone helps children learn about deer and deer management through games, projects, activities and video clips, and shows them the journey of venison from the hill to their plates. Schools are also encouraged to meet up with deer managers and local chefs to learn about deer on the hills and about how to cook venison themselves.

To reach as many children as possible across Scotland, the Deer Zone is published in both English and Gaelic. It is also the first wildlife resource specifically designed for the Curriculum for Excellence. The Deer Education Zone can be found at

Stewart Stevenson said:

"Deer are one of Scotland's most iconic animals and this new website will help educate our future generations on the importance of deer - their habitats, how they are managed and their impact on the Scottish environment and economy.

"This resource supports the Curriculum for Excellence and will provide great assistance in our classrooms when learning about Scotland's wildlife. I am delighted that the website will be available in both English and Gaelic."

Stephen Gibbs, Chairman, the Scottish Venison Partnership, said:

"This is a very valuable addition to the existing resources available through our website. We with SNH and others are all working together to improve knowledge about deer - deer species and their habitat, management, venison, healthy eating and so on. If we can reach youngsters everywhere now through initiatives like this we are investing in the future of everyone who has an interest in Scotland's most iconic species."

Pete Moore, from SNH's wildlife management team, said:

"The Deer Education Zone will give teachers and pupils the chance to find out all about deer and venison. The activities encourage children to learn how and why deer are managed and discover their value to the rural economy. We hope that the Gaelic version of the site will allow as many children as possible to learn about deer and look forward to seeing some exciting results from schools, which we'll feature on the site in the future."

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