|Empty & Haunting Glencoe|
Our hills are bare
How can we restore, recover our wetlands, our forests,
Our hedgehogs, our eagles , our bears
Our winding rivers to the seas..
- Only 2% of Scotland has trees, it’s the least wooded country in Europe. 37% is Europe’s average.
- 25% of Scotland’s land is for grouse shooting and open hill deer stalking with little revenue. There is an urgent need for talks with all involved.
Our hills are bare, with burnt heathers, triangles of unnatural pines with no undergrowth, wild salmon under threat by lice-infected farmed salmon. Victorians tamed our hills to empty glens for grouse shooting.
Our forests were cut down for the trenches in world war one and sent over to Belgium and France and our land depleted by clearances of people, to prioritise sheep and grouse shooting exploitation. Scotland needs the powers to protect our natural resources and a greener future. Scotland has unnatural, empty landscapes, devoid of people or trees –
I remember my first visit to Glencoe and Rannoch moor, as a young student and I was so struck by the vast emptiness amid the towering, imposing, snow capped mountains. The winds seemed to howl of the past tragedies and violence ..the Glencoe massacre of the MacDonalds.
In America there are wondrous natural forests, that are multi-coloured, from soft yellows, dark greens, blue greens, in the Fall are such a glorious show of reds, oranges and browns.
Scotland is one of the most nature ruined countries – exploited by polices of grouse shooting, heather burning moors, culling hares, wildlife, removing natural predators and people in favour of sheep and deer herds. Images of Norway show diverse, natural forests and people living on the land – unlike Scotland’s empty glens.
The okra whales of our western waters, are now perhaps infertile. They can live 90 years and only 8 adults now remain. Are those awful nuclear subs that patrol the western seas, confusing these magnificent animals with their sonar sounds? Most Scots want the removal of these ugly, monstrous subs.
“….absence of birdsong or wolf howl,. We were persuaded to let the soils wash into the sea, the few remaining predators to be trapped or shot, the land tamed, and the life drained away.
the taming of the Scottish highlands has not tamed wildlife. “
***How can we Restore?
|Wetlands & marsh|
Restoration is supported by 75% of Scots
Positives moves – UN Decade of Habitat restoration; re-introduction of natural ecosystems and natural biodiversity; beavers brought back to build dams which restore wetlands and temperate rainforests; osprey and white-tailed eagles brought back. Restoring nature to our quiet glens.
Re-wilding projects Scotland a re-wilding; mountain hare culls have stopped. And Wildlife bridges for animals rather than small pockets – Perth to Inverness, wetlands, natural forest, habitat re-connectivity.
Huge costs. Scotland has many alien species, rural economy development, greener habitat, plus money to remove the awful scourge of Rhododendrons.
Bio-diversity of the future.
‘young forests are on the march for the first time in generations, peat lands are being restored, natural processes are being allowed to shape and govern our landscapes. “
River restoration systems were allowed burns straightened out a century ago, to meander again, reconnecting to their floodplains and leading to more trees, more flowers, more insects, more fish, cleaner waters, less flooding.
Scotland’s beautiful landscapes, some of the best in the world, have been exploited, ruined and laid bare by foreigners intent on fast money. Indy Scotland needs the powers to protect our resources – now a theme park for global elites.
**Scottish Rewilding Alliance
**I attended an online
Talk by wildlife photographer Peter Cairns
Cairns spoke of his motivations with his photography.
Conservation works, we need more of it. Wanderlust, always looking over the horizon or beyond doorways: asking questions about myself and why I’m motivated to do something. He considered Wildlife management, conservation and ecology. He spoke of our relationship with animals and with predators such as wolves, to reintroduced them and to bring back the natural environment.
Cairns spoke of photography as a language and the power of the visceral image. Its power as a visual communicator, storytelling, informs, inspires and influences change. The human world view – hunters, ranchers, our set of values.
|Loch Ardinny &Campsies|
**ISSUES we must urgently address
Economic growth vs well being?
Green bridge Aberdeen.
Grouse moors are legal, moor burns are a problem, but we must work together to find solutions.
*Tooth and Claw with Mark Hamblin: changing our relationship with wildlife. We have complex, contradictory values. Endangered species. The wildcat – highland tiger.
*Wild Wonders of Europe: top 70 nature photographers, explore sustainability.
*2020 Vision (20 British photographers) he feels more at home in Scotland and to tell the story properly, it needs to be under your skin. Protecting species and nature reserves. Think bigger and longer term.
BOOK Regeneration, Andrew Panting.