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Still Time To Vote For Scotland's Favourite Wild Animal

8th October 2013

Photograph of Still Time To Vote For Scotland's Favourite Wild Animal

People urged to vote for their favourite wild animal as campaign draws to a close.

With just three weeks to go before voting closes to decide Scotlandís favourite wild animal, Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) is urging as many people as possible to take part in the poll for Scotlandís Big 5.

The vote for Scotlandís Big 5 closes at the end of this month, with thousands of votes already registered for each of the five species listed. The campaign is just one of the thousands of activities and events that have been taking place across Scotland during the Year of Natural Scotland.

SNH has been working with a range of partners including the Scottish Government, VisitScotland and EventScotland, to deliver a programme of events and activities throughout the year to encourage people to get out and enjoy nature.

Ian Jardine, SNH chief executive, said:ďThe response to our Scotlandís Big 5 campaign has been brilliant, showing how much people value Scotlandís wildlife.

ďThousands of people have voted for their favourite from our Big 5 list, and there have been several alternative lists put forward for seabirds, game animals, trees and plants and support for rarer spcies like the pine marten and wildcat. It has got people thinking about and talking about wildlife, and thatís what the campaign is all about.Ē

Online voting for Scotlandís Big 5 can be found at www.visitscotland.com/about/wildlife/snh and closes on 31 October 2013. The species are red squirrel, red deer, harbour seal, otter and the golden eagle, with the eagle emerging as the favourite so far.

Mr Jardine added: ďThereís still three weeks left for people to cast their votes, so fans of the golden eagle shouldnít count their chicks just yet. More importantly, autumn is a great time to get out and explore nature across Scotland, with one of the highlights at this time of year being the red deer rut.Ē

Community events across the country have embraced the Year of Natural Scotland 2013 theme and it was also the main theme for many national events including the Royal Highland Show and Scone Game Fair.

In April, the first ever John Muir Day took place in Scotland, commemorating the Scots-born hero of conservation. This kicked off a series of events continuing into the 2014 Year of Homecoming, including the John Muir Festival and the opening of the John Muir Way next April.

Technology has also played its part in celebrating nature. SNH produced three mobile phone apps. The Scotlandís Nature app was launched in January, followed by ĎScotlandís Big 5í app and then the ĎView from the Trainí app which highlights the nature, culture and history along some of Scotlandís main train journeys.

Linking nature with the creative arts is Naturally Inspired, an initiative co-ordinated by Creative Scotland. Fourteen projects have been selected across the country on sites ranging from an urban wetland park in the west to a remote stretch of land north of Aberdeen. The projects are being carried out by community groups, individual artists and the wider community.

Scottish Natural Heritage is the government's adviser on all aspects of nature and landscape across Scotland. Our role is to help everyone understand, value and enjoy Scotland's nature now and in the future. For more information, visit our website at www.snh.gov.uk. SNH media is also now on Twitter at twitter.com/SNH_Tweets.

The Year of Natural Scotland 2013 is a celebration of Scotland's outstanding natural beauty. It's a partnership between the Scottish Government, VisitScotland, EventScotland, Scottish Natural Heritage and a range of public and private sector organisations. For information on events and activities throughout the year, visit www.snh.gov.uk/natural

PHOTO
Caithness photographer Ken Crossan
To see more of Ken's great wildlife photography for Caithness go HERE

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