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Caithness Countryside Volunteers Help Out At Forsinain

30th January 2014

Photograph of Caithness Countryside Volunteers Help Out At Forsinain

The Caithness Countryside Volunteers ventured across to Mackay country this month to work on a ‘boggy’ project on the flows of Sutherland. The peatlands of Caithness and Sutherland are a globally important habitat and the RSPB are currently undertaking work to restore some areas of former conifer plantation back to native bog.

The Caithness volunteers were put to work on a part of the reserve called Forsinain which is in the process of being restored. The volunteers removed young conifers saplings which have set seed in the felled areas. Claire Foot, RSPB Assistant Warden said “It was fantastic to have the help of the Caithness volunteers alongside our own residential reserve volunteers. Everyone was so enthusiastic and we managed to get more done than I had hoped possible. The public can visit Forsinain and walk the nature trail, details are available at rspb.org.uk/Forsinard.”  

The need to conserve the peatlands of Caithness and Sutherland has been recognised since the 1980’s. Paul Turner from RSPB explains “At Forsinard Flows RSPB Scotland has been actively blocking drains and restoring damaged areas of bog on deep peat since 1995 and volunteers alongside local contractors have been a key part of that effort.

This work is now internationally recognised as significantly contributing to combating climate change as well as improving water flow in our rivers and allowing key moorland birds such as golden plover, short-eared owl and curlew to return. And all that is great for attracting visitors to the Far North. The Caithness Countryside Volunteers have so many tasks they could be tackling, we really appreciated them making the time to support us.”

The Caithness Countryside Volunteers meet monthly to work on projects around the county, new members are always welcome. Please contact Kirsty.rosie[AT]highland.gov.uk for more details.

 

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