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Monthly Archives: January 2012

Ratty shows head for heights on Beinn Eighe

The enigmatic water vole may be associated with our water and river systems but scientists have revealed it is it thriving almost 700 metres up a Scottish hill. Beinn Eighe National Nature Reserve in Wester Ross managed by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) is home to some of Britain’s rarest wildlife. And a recent survey of water voles found the inhabitants quite happily defining territory at that altitude. Water voles are chunky rodents up to 25 cm in length. They live along the edges of burns, rivers and ditches and feed on grasses and sedges while inhabiting burrow systems among waterside

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Posted in Nature

Culra Bothy fully open again

The Mountain Bothy Assocation says that the Ben Alder estate has made temporary repairs to the roof of Culra bothy which was damaged in the December storms. The room that was affected is now watertight and the bothy is once more fully functional.

Posted in Access issues, News

JMT launches wild land management website

The John Muir Trust today launched its new Wild Land Management Standards website which illustrates the principles that guide its management of wild land. Aimed at other land managers and anyone interested in managing land with a focus on improving habitats and encouraging wildlife in a natural way, the site offers a range of resources including a Wild Land Management Standards Handbook, management plan template and links to useful online resources. “We hope this website will help to demonstrate the ecosystem approach we take to managing the properties we own and be an inspiration and help to others,” said Mike

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Posted in Access issues, Nature

Hunt is on to spot Glen Nevis Red Squirrels

John Muir Trust Nevis conservation officer Lewis Pate spotted a perfectly split hazelnut shell left by a red squirrel enjoying a nutty treat in Steall Gorge, Glen Nevis. This is the first recorded evidence of squirrels in this location. Lewis says, “I was walking through the birch and ash wood on the path when I found it. The only animal that can do this is a red squirrel and while we have never observed any reds in the gorge, it is reasonable evidence of their presence despite the habitat not being particularly suited to them. “Reds will feed on birch

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Posted in Nature

Rare bugs and other species unearthed in the Highlands

Biodiversity surveys carried out on Trees for Life’s Dundreggan Estate, in Glen Moriston last year have revealed a range of rare and endangered species. The new discoveries on the 10,000-acre estate include the first Scottish record of one species of sawfly and what may be the first British record of another; the second-ever British record of a waxfly species; and species of spider, cranefly and dragonfly all listed in the UK’s Red Data Book of endangered species. At least 60 priority species for conservation have now been identified on the site, which lies to the west of Loch Ness and

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Posted in Nature

Rescued walker dies of injuries

A 19-year-old walker who was airlifted to Raigmore Hospital on Monday (23 January) after a fall in the Gairloch area has sadly died in hospital. Craig Cathie, 19, from Moodiesburn, near Glasgow was walking in a group of 16 in the Flowerdale Estate area of Gairloch when he fell between 20 and 30 feet and sustained a head injury. Next of kin have been informed and, as is normal in these circumstances, a report will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal.

Posted in News

Search for missing Cairngorms walker stood down

Police have said that the search for missing Yorkshire man Grant Cunliffe has been stood down. A third day of searches failed to find any trace of the missing man and his family have been made aware there will be no further searches at the moment. Mr Cunliffe from North Yorkshire has been missing in the Cairngorms since Thursday 19 January 2012. Around 180 rescue personnel have been involved in the searches over the past three days. Yesterday (24 January) 65-70 rescuers took part in a first light search for Mr Cunliffe, which included representatives from Northern Constabulary, Grampian Police,

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Posted in News

Police appeal for lost Cairngorms walker

Police in Aviemore are appealing for information in relation to the movements of an overdue climber missing in the Cairngorms since Thursday 19th January 2012. Grant Cunliffe, aged 49, from Skipton in North Yorkshire is believed to have walked into Corrour Bothy in the Larig Ghru pass on Wednesday 18th January, intending to go hillwalking on the Thursday and Friday before returning home. As yet Mr Cunliffe has not returned from his trip and was reported overdue on Saturday 21 January. Mr Cunliffe is described as 5’10”, slim build, balding, wearing a blue waterproof jacket and black waterproof trousers, carrying

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Posted in News

Wetland Walk Planned for Loch Leven

A free walk showcasing Loch Leven’s wetlands takes place on Saturday, 4 February, led by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) staff. Loch Leven is an internationally designated wetlands site, and the walk is part of the celebrations for this year’s World Wetlands Day. Craig Nisbet, SNH reserve officer at Loch Leven, said: “We’re again seeing high numbers of birds at Loch Leven this winter, so the walk should be a terrific one. We recently counted over 12,000 pink footed geese, plus almost 500 greylag geese, lots of whooper swans, a few grey partridges and a kingfisher. Plus there’s the chance to

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Posted in News

Sign up for Free Scottish Avalanche Risk Texts

The Sportscotland Avalanche Information Service is now providing a free text service to mobile phones. The summary service complements the detailed avalanche forecast information available on the SAIS website. You can subscribe to the service by sending a keywords to the number 88020 (standard network charges will apply). The summary avlanche forecast text will then be sent out daily at 1800 hrs. The keywords are: saisnc for (North Cairngorms area) saislo for (Lochaber area) saissc for (South Cairngorms area) saisgl for (Glencoe area) saiscm for (Creag Meagaidh area) Once the relevant keyword has been sent to the number 88020 a

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Posted in News


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Walking can be dangerous and is done entirely at your own risk. Information is provided free of charge; it is each walker's responsibility to check it and navigate using a map and compass.