Caithness & Sutherland – Peatland restoration work is highlighted on World Wetlands Day

A summary of progress on peatland restoration in the globally important flow country in the north of Scotland.

Peatland restoration projects in the Flow Country of Caithness and Sutherland as well as other locations around Scotland are being celebrated as part of World Wetlands Day.

The ongoing work on what is seen as a globally important habitat is led by Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS), the Scottish Government agency responsible for managing national forests and land.

World Wetlands Day is held annually on February 2 to raise international awareness about the importance of wetlands for people and the planet.

Blanket bog is a type of habitat found on peatland soils in cool, wet upland areas in maritime climates. It covers some 23 per cent of Scotland’s land area and is rarely found elsewhere in the world.

In the past, FLS points out, its importance as a carbon sink and as unique habitat was less well understood and large areas were often drained and ploughed for tree planting. This would dry out the peat and harm the habitat formerly used by birds such as golden plover, greenshank, hen harrier and black grouse, as well as animals and plants.