Help capercaillie

Hen harriers, as Logan Steele
indicates (Letters, 12 August), are no respecters of national boundaries. Threats to biodiversity and conservation endeavours transcend these too.

The 1837 restoration of the capercaillie involved numerous nationalities: unnamed Swedes enlisted by Welsh naturalist, Llewelyn Lloyd; landowner Lord Breadalbane; his English friend Sir Thomas Fowell Buxton; and an Irish and Scottish gamekeeper, Lawrance Banvill and James Guthries. Today, having been driven to extinction in Scotland’s Loch Lomond Park, capercaillie face development and disturbance pressures in their last pinewood strongholds in the Cairngorms National Park.

In 2009, Scottish Government Reporters advised that School Wood, Nethybridge should not be allocated for housing. The current threat to this Ancient Woodland Inventory site originated from the investment
interests of Swiss-based multinational Zurich/Eagle Star.

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Allowing development in such irreplaceable woodland
between core woods for capercaillie would undermine recent European-backed efforts to
restore the fortunes of this
beleaguered bird.

With others, the Badenoch and Strathspey Conservation Group are urging the Cairngorms Park Authority to refuse development at this important site.

Gus Jones

Convener Badenoch & Strathspey Conservation Group