The Scottish Wildlife Trust has called for the restoration of Scotland’s former ancient woodlands using native trees.
'Plantations on Ancient Woodland Sites' (PAWS) are ancient woodland sites in Scotland’s National Forest Estate where the semi-natural woodland has been replaced with a plantation.
The call came on the final day of the Forestry Commission Scotland’s consultation on the 'Strategic Directions for the Natural Forest Estate'.
This strategic document sets out the future direction and priorities for the National Forest Estate. The Scottish Wildlife Trust wants to see more emphasis placed on delivering public benefits, such as habitat for red squirrels and the storing of greenhouse gases, with the public money that is invested into the National Forest Estate. The trust sees restoring PAWS to native species as one way of achieving this.
Bruce Wilson, Scottish Wildlife Trust Living Landscapes Policy Officer said:
“The way the National Forest Estate is managed is very important when it comes to Scotland meeting its biodiversity and climate change targets. Wildlife rich forestry and associated habitat also contributes towards the health, wellbeing and sense of place of Scotland’s communities and is very important to attracting tourists and visitors.”