With the COVID-19 five-mile travel restriction now lifted, Forestry and Land Scotland has been joined by land managers, environmental experts and campaigners in calling for more responsible behaviour.
Their plea is backed by Zero Waste Scotland, Keep Scotland Beautiful, Scottish Water, Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park Authority, Scottish Natural Heritage and Cairngorms National Park Authority.
It is hoped the appeal will encourage people to think carefully about when and where they want to travel and to be considerate of local communities, other visitors and land management staff and take their litter home.
The public is also being reminded that while many car parks and beauty spots are now open to visitors, waste collection services may not yet be operational.
Simon Hodgson, Forestry and Land Scotland chief executive, said: “Although the travel limit has now been lifted, we are still in the process of getting staff back to work with new, safe-working practices that comply with the Scottish Government guidance.
“Many of our contractors are in the same boat so waste collection services might not yet be operational.
“And while many FLS car parks are now open, the toilets at some of our sites are not.
“So as Scots get re-accustomed to travelling further afield for leisure pursuits, we are appealing to the public to help avoid repeats of the selfish, irresponsible behaviour that, over the past few weeks, has seen many sites swamped by litter – or even despoiled by human waste.
“This sort of anti-social behaviour not only creates a significant health hazard but also eats in to the limited resources that land managers have.
“We’d urge people to think carefully about travel plans and to behave like people who are proud to call such a beautiful country home.
“The sad thing is, many of the people responsible for the littering in recent weeks would say they were proud to live in Scotland and yet they treat our beautiful countryside in this contemptible manner. It’s not acceptable.”