Habitat blog showcases iconic wildlife

WORK to preserve habitat for some of Scotland’s most iconic wildlife species is the subject of a blog showcasing the organisation, Forestry and Land Scotland.

Says the article (here), by Barbara Fraser, of Pagoda PR: ” Partnership working allows sensitive habitats to be managed in totality even where ownership rests with different organisations.

“Forestry and Land Scotland manages 630,000 hectares of woodlands and wild sites but joint management projects allow shared expertise and resources to benefit the wider environment.”

Of the several species featured, Fraser writes the following specifically about the Capercaille (pictured): “The largest grouse in the world, measuring between 60-87cms, and one of Scotland’s rarest birds.

“During mating season, the males gather to perform in a lek, dancing and parading to entice female birds. The Capercaillie was extinct in Scotland by the 1700s but was reintroduced in the 1800s.

“There are probably fewer than 1,000 Capercaillie left in Scotland and forests managed by FLS are among the most important remaining sites.

“Caledonian pinewoods are great habitats for Capercaillie, but they are perfectly happy in plantations that are managed for timber production. 

“Nevertheless, Capercaillie hens now produce far fewer chicks than they once did. Local factors, such as disturbance and predation, may have an impact, but evidence suggests that changing weather patterns are the main problem. 

“Cold and rainy periods in June are more frequent and this is when the chicks are small and vulnerable. Climate predictions tell us that Scottish summers will be wetter, but warmer, so there is much uncertainty about how this will affect this amazing bird.”

Also featured: Scottish crossbill, Wood ants, Osprey, Goshawk, Red squirrel, Common scoter, Pine hoverfly, Pine marten and Freshwater pearl mussel.

Pictured: Capercaille

Picture credit: Colin Leslie