Rare wildlife spied near Glasgow after nature sites restored

Pine martens and red kites are among the iconic species spotted not far from Scotland’s biggest city, demonstrating the success of a community environmental project.

Cumbernauld Living Landscape (CLL) has been working with local groups to improve more than 260 hectares of natural habitat at nine nature reserves around Cumbernauld, helping to boost biodiversity and enhance outdoor opportunities in the area for people.

CLL aims to improve accessibility to green spaces, connect young people to nature and raise awareness about the health and well-being benefits getting outside can bring.

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Over the course of the project, creatures previously absent from the sites have begun to re-appear in the area - including rare species such as pine martens and red kites.

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Jennifer McNulty, project manager at Cumbernauld Living Landscape, said: “The team and I could not be happier with the results of the restoration project so far.

“It’s great that the people who live in and visit Cumbernauld have native Scottish wildlife on their doorstep.

“We’re helping to turn Cumbernauld into a green network for wildlife, a place where species can move around the town and beyond using the green corridors of woodland, wetlands and grasslands the project is developing.”

Pine martens, which were once almost absent from Scotland, have been spotted around Cumbernauld after extensive restoration of nature sites in the area. Photograph: Karl Franz/WildNet

The work of CLL, led by the Scottish Wildlife Trust, has been commended by the team at the Scottish Land Commission’s MyLand.Scot campaign – an initiative that aims to raise awareness of the role and benefits land can play in everyday life.

“The way we own and use land influences many parts of our everyday lives,” said Hamish Trench, chief executive of the Scottish Land Commission.

“Cumbernauld Living Landscape is an excellent example of how bringing the community together to take an active role in how the land is used can transform an area – and all in a sustainable, self-sufficient way.

This elusive pine marten is just one of the creatures making a comeback as a result of improvements to nature sites by Cumbernauld Living Landscape and local groups. Photograph: Paul Barclay

“It is great to see how the project continues to provide a positive impact in the Cumbernauld area.

“Through MyLand.Scot, we want to raise awareness of the role and benefits land can play in everyday life in Scotland – to encourage people to get involved in conversations about land and take action in their local area.”

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