Conservation work party update

Volunteer co-ordinator Sandy Maxwell reports on a busy start to the year

Nevis work party   darren and sandy in an exclosure 2017 detail

Nevis

The year started in Glen Nevis when volunteers worked with the Nevis Landscape Partnership (NLP) to build two fenced exclosures to study the effect of deer and sheep browsing on woodland regeneration. Trees were also planted in fenced exclosures at two bends of the lower Ben path, to encourage woodland and prevent walkers taking a shortcut off the path. 

We will be back working with NLP in July when we will be siting owl boxes built by the partnership on our ground in Glen Nevis.  We will also be carrying out monitoring of water voles and mountain ringlet butterflies in-between maintaining paths around the glen.

Partnerships

Working like this with partnerships close to our properties will feature in three visits later this year to the Coigagh and Assynt Living Landscape project which includes our Quinag estate.  The final visit of these on Tanera Mor in the Summer Isles is now completely booked out.

The first of the two annual trips to the Western Isles took place in everything from a snow storm to sunbathing weather in the same week. Work with the North and West Harris Trusts included tree planting, beach cleaning and path building. We even helped with the new centre that the WHT has built - Tala na Mara - by laying grass around it. The next visit there in September is timed to coincide with the Harris Mountain Festival which is sponsored by the Trust.  

Skye and Sandwood

Our own properties have not been neglected and in April we carried out path work on both Strathaird and Sconser working on the Blà Bheinn and Sligachan glen paths. Later in April all the beaches around the Sandwood estate were cleared of rubbish and this will be repeated in August when we will also be working on the path into Sandwod Bay.

All welcome

If you are interested in finding out more you can browse a list of upcoming conservation work parties. One change to the rest of the year is the 19 August work party on Ben Nevis to clear summit rubbish which has been moved to 20 August. You don’t always have to sign up in advance as one Dutch tourist found out in Inverie in May. Frank Greonland was walking through from Glenfinnan and got chatting about the work party when he met volunteers at the Long Beach camp site there.  He ended up spending four days clearing rhoddies and rebuilding the path up Ladhar Bheinn!

If you have any questions, please email Sandy Maxwell.

Photo shows Sandy and a volunteer planting trees in an exclosure at Nevis, earlier in the year. See more work party photos on Flickr here: