The kinds of work we do
On this page:
Walkers are often
obstructed by poorly maintained or neglected paths, and lack of direction
can lead to damage of sensitive habitats by trampling feet.
Improving access usually
involves surfacing; step building; waymarking; drainage work or building
bridges, stiles, gates or boardwalks.
Building a bridge at Beecraigs Country Park
Drystane Dykes (called
'drystone walls' south of the border) are the original environmentally sound
field boundaries. Today over 80% of dykes are in need of repair, and we are
in danger of losing an important landscaping feature that shapes our
Repairing or building a
drystane dyke is like a 3D jigsaw puzzle - sometimes frustrating, but always
rewarding. The dykes that we build could last for 100 years.
Laying the foundations of a dyke at Vogrie
Sand dunes provide a unique
but fragile habitat for rare species of animals and plants. Dunes change
structure naturally through wind erosion, but the greatest threat comes from
trampling by people.
Planting marram grass and
building sand trap fencing helps to stabilise the dunes, whilst building
boardwalks and improving coastal paths helps people enjoy the coast while
steering them away from sensitive sites.
Planting marram grass at Gullane
Waterways and Wetlands
Wetlands once covered
quarter of the British Isles. Today this figure is just over 1%. Over 75% of
ponds have disappeared in the last hundred years. They are home to one third
of our native plants and over 1,200 species of invertebrates.
eventually silt up and become wet woodland. Clearance work, tree felling,
and controlling surrounding vegetation is sometimes carried out to stabilise
or reverse this natural process of 'succession'. Digging a new pond makes a
real contribution to the conservation of an endangered species.
Pond clearance at Vogrie Country Park
Rhododendron, beech and
sycamore are all introduced species and are not native to Scotland. All can
have a devastating effect on indigenous species as they compete for light
and nutrients and shade out the ground flora.
include coppicing, tree planting, felling, clearing and controlling growth
of non-native species. Most woodland work is done in winter so as to cause
as little disturbance as possible.
Rhododendron control at Barfad Farm
meadows are a rare haven for our wildflowers. Created by human activities
such as cattle grazing, these valuable wildlife habitats would be lost if
they weren't managed.
Clearing small trees and
shrubs that otherwise would destroy a rare habitat through shading or
changing soil conditions; grass cutting and weeding. (Serious consideration
is always given before removing scrub from a site, as it can be an important
habitat in itself).
Removing brambles from the Bawsinch reserve
Most Scottish woodland
could regenerate naturally, but is prevented from doing so because of
grazing by rabbits, sheep or deer.
fences to form 'exclosures' keeps animals out of an area and allows the
natural regeneration of seedlings to take place. Fencing can also be used to
discourage the public from entering a sensitive area.
Fencing at Woodhall Dean