Lomond woodlands are amongst the most precious in the world

The woodlands around Drumkinnon are earmarked for the Flamingo Land project.  Picture by Emma McKerry

By Democrat reporter

Native woodland on the banks of Loch Lomond has been designated as one of Scotland’s most precious natural resources and of global importance.

The area, which includes the woods earmarked for Flamingo Land,  contains some of Scotland’s rare temperate rain forests which host a range of wildlife.

Now, a partnership by Scotland’s leading nature conservation organisations, has launched the Atlantic Woodland Alliance in a bid to save dwindling rain forests across Scotland, including those bordering Loch Lomond.

The alliance includes Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority.

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Picture by Lorna Dennett

The remnant oak, birch, ash, native pine and hazel woodlands are small, fragmented and isolated from each other.

They are over mature and often show little or no regeneration and are in danger of being lost forever.

The partners will now work to implement a strategy to save and expand them.

Simon Jones, director of conservation and visitor operations at the park authority said: “The native woodland in the national park includes some of Scotland’s rare temperate rainforests which are one of our most precious natural resources and of global importance.

“By better managing and expanding our native woodlands, we not only increase the diversity of wildlife they support, but also help build resilience to the impacts of a warming climate – a vital legacy for future generations.”

The National Park Authority is currently consulting on a draft Trees and Woodland Strategy which sets out an ambitious plan for how trees and woodlands are to be enhanced and used within the National Park.

The document sets out plans to deliver a wide range of benefits across the National Park including increasing woodland coverage, particularly of native trees, the creation of forestry sector jobs and promoting outdoor recreation activities to help improve the health and well-being of those visiting, living and working within the National Park.

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