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Monthly Archives: March 2011

Isle of May opens to walkers

Boat trips to Scottish Natural Heritage’s Isle of May National Nature Reserve re-start for this year’s visitor season on 1 April. The island is renowned for its bird populations, its seals, its history and its carpets of flowers. The reserve, at the mouth of the Forth, has a boat service from Fife and East Lothian during the visitor season. Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) welcomes boat trips to the island from April until the end of September and SNH does not charge for visiting. The island has a visitor centre and marked paths covering the island. The private May Princess boat

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Posted in Nature, News

National Nature Reserve walks highlighted

There are over fifty National Nature Reserves (NNRs) in Scotland which are some of the best places for wildlife spotting in the country. It is now possible to search the 1300 routes on Walkhighlands to find walks in these Reserves. NNR’s are managed primarily for nature, but people are welcome too, many have facilities to enable visitors to appreciate the wildlife living there. Walkhighlands has 69 detailed walking routes in NNRs across Scotland – to find them go to the Find A Walk search facility and click NNR in the Walk Features option. Put together, the NNRs showcase the wide

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Posted in Nature, News, Walkhighlands news

MCofS publishes Hillwalking Factfile

The body which represents hillwalkers and climbers in Scotland, the Mountaineering Council of Scotland (MCofS) has published a new Factfile about hillwalking. The A5 leaflet is aimed at anyone thinking of taking up hillwalking. On launching it, the MCofS said, “This new FactFile gives anyone considering hill walking in Scotland’s hills and mountains in summer for the first time a concise list of what they need to know, what gear they need to get and where they can start.” “The first chapter gives some practical advice on what clothing is the best for hill walking and what else you need

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Posted in News

Experts baffled by Osprey's return

The Scottish Wildlife Trust has today (29 March 2011) confirmed that the osprey thought to be oldest breeding female of its kind ever recorded in the UK has returned for the 21st consecutive year to the charity’s Loch of the Lowes Wildlife Reserve in Perthshire. Wildlife experts have now positively identified the bird as the resident female osprey, ‘Lady’, thanks to a close-up image of the bird’s iris seen from the charity’s nest camera. The confirmation comes after an unidentified bird was spotted landing on the reserve’s nesting site at 12.10 pm yesterday (28 March) where it remained for no

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Posted in Nature

Osprey spotted at Loch of the Lowes

Jonathan Pinnick, the Scottish Wildlife Trust’s Visitor Centre Assistant, said: “We are pleased to confirm that at around 12.10 pm today (Monday 28 March) an unidentified osprey paid a visit to the osprey nest at Loch of the Lowes. “The bird’s visit was brief, landing on the nest for only a few minutes before it flew off again. As a result, we are unfortunately unable to make a positive identification of this bird. However we are hopeful that it could have been our resident female osprey, known by many as ‘Lady’, because the bird did not appear to have a

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Posted in Nature

Last chance to win Speyside break

There are only a few days left in which to enter Walkhighland’s March competition. Walkhighlands has teamed up with Craggan Outdoors and have a two night stay at Craggan Outdoors Bothy, sleeping up to 6 people, to give away. Craggan Outdoors, based on beautiful Speyside at the heart of the Cairngorms National Park, has for the last two years been the TripAdvisor top-rated outdoor activity centre in Scotland. Choose from a range of over twenty fantastic activities, suited to people of all ages and abilities. Stay in either a 27-bed Bunkhouse or 6-bed Bothy, both sitting atop a hill within

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Posted in Walkhighlands news

Online booking for Angus Glens Walking Festival

The award-winning four day Angus Glens Walking Festival has started taking online bookings for the 2011 event to be held in June. Experienced walkers and novices alike will be able to choose from a packed programme of 28 walks as well as three evenings of top-class entertainment. Last year the festival was extremely popular with many walkers reserving places within days of the online booking launch. Spaces are limited so organisers are advising to book early. Now in its ninth year the festival will run from Thursday 2 to Sunday 5 June 2011. The programme provides the opportunity to experience

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Posted in News

Osprey EJ returns to Loch Garten

A female osprey has returned the breeding site at Loch Garten for the ninth year in a row. EJ appeared at the RPSB reserve on 24 March almost bang on time with the predictions based on her previous return dates. Ospreys overwinter in West Africa before embarking on the gruelling journey thousands of miles back to the breeding area in the Scottish Highlands. Writing on the RSPB’s Osprey Blog, Caroline Rance from the RSPB said, “It’s great to see her back for her ninth season, at 14 she is getting on a bit and it’s safe to say there have

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Posted in Nature

Ben Lawers tree planting boost

Work is underway at the National Trust for Scotland’s (NTS) Ben Lawers National Nature Reserve near Killin as staff and volunteers prepare for the peak visitor season once again. Last year the visitor centre building, which was closed during a round of NTS cutbacks, was removed from the car park and there are ongoing plans to re-site the existing car park and undertake landscaping. The reserve is the site of the Central Highlands’ highest mountain and six other Munros, as well as some of Scotland’s rarest alpine flora, beautiful birds including the Ptarmigan and Red Grouse, fascinating archaeology and stunning

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Posted in Access issues, Nature, News

New studies highlight state of capercaillie

Studies into a range of factors potentially affecting Scottish capercaillie have today been published by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH). The research to understand the pattern of capercaillie productivity has resulted in three reports under a partnership comprising SNH, the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT), Forestry Commission Scotland (FCS) and the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB). Lead scientists from GWCT, with the support of partners, found capercaillie breeding success declined over 1991-2009. This decline was related to changes in weather conditions and increasing evidence of predators in capercaillie forests. Previous studies linked the fortunes of capercaillie with

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Posted in Nature


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