"I very much welcome the significant reduction in the number of birds of prey poisoned, which I hope signals the real change in attitude that is required to end this outdated and cruel practice.
"2013 is the Year of Natural Scotland and our birds of prey are both a vital part of the natural environment and a stunning spectacle which attract visitors to our countryside from home and abroad.
"It is our duty to protect them."
More top news
Nicola Sturgeon has said the SNP would listen to arguments. Alex Salmond says they have - and are set to vote against military action.
A man from Eastriggs near Annan has been shortlisted for a national award as the "Deafblind Person of the Year."
Work has begun on the £16million Windermere Jetty: Museum of Boats, Steam and Stories, on the shore of England's longest lake.