Concern as Inversnaid Feral Goat Cull Resumes

RSPB Scotland has resumed a controversial cull of feral goats on the eastern shore of Loch Lomond.

The environmental organisation is facing criticism from local people, who fear the cull could wipe out the entire population of goats around Inversnaid.

The animals are popular with tourists and walkers on the West Highland Way.

But their voracious appetites cause problems for conservationists and RSPB Scotland says it needs to protect the rich woodland habitat.

It wants to reduce goat numbers in the Inversnaid area from about 69 to 30 in the coming years.

Reserves manager Robert Coleman said:

“This is Scotland’s rainforest. We’ve got a huge range of moss and lichen here. In fact, 5% of all of the world’s moss species are represented in Scotland and this habitat is an excellent example of that diversity.

“By managing the herbivores, deer and goats, we can ensure the longevity of this habitat and make sure there are trees, mosses and lichens in the future while ensuring we maintain the populations of herbivores within the area as well.”

Feral goats on the banks of Loch Lomond are popular with tourists
Feral goats on the banks of Loch Lomond are popular with tourists

Twenty goats are due to be shot this year. The local community council and the British Feral Goat Research Group believe the remaining population may be too small to survive a series of harsh winters.

Community councillor Andre Goulancourt told BBC Scotland:

“If the goats were at a low number and we had two or three successive bad winters then we would end up with no goats.

“These goats have been here for a long time and they represent an asset to the tourist industry that Inversnaid depends on. The local people enjoy seeing them too and it would be a great loss if the goats were to disappear.”

‘Important elements’

But Scottish Natural Heritage has backed the cull.

Alan McDonnell, of SNH, said:

“A recent survey found that goat numbers are higher than previously thought, and the cull is necessary to bring numbers down to a more sustainable level. Pollochro Woods is a protected natural site and part of the Loch Lomond Woods Special Area of Conservation.

“The protected features in these woods include the native woodland habitat itself, mosses and lichens — which are all threatened and important elements of Scotland’s nature.”

Meanwhile, Forestry Commission Scotland has pledged to consult with the local community on plans to reduce goat numbers in the wider area.

A spokesman said:

“There is a real need to balance the long-term restoration and management of Loch Katrine, Loch Ard and surrounding areas with the increasing numbers of feral goats.

“Managing the feral goat population also reduces the risk of them becoming a hazard for road users in the area. This is done in consultation with the local communities so that we can fully explain what we are doing and why.”

Story reported by BBC

FWN filmed some wild goats two years ago near Loch Katrine, amazing to see these interesting animals in there natural habitat. Surely a reintroduction of wild cat and Lymx would keep the deer and goat numbers down if these organizations are that concerned about them damaging the environment.

Man!!!  is the most destructive element in climate and environments.

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Loch Lomond Bird of Prey Centre

 

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About Us

Loch Lomond
Birds of Prey Centre
A modest Bird of Prey Centre, situated close to the village of Balloch on the shores of Loch Lomond, and within the “Loch Lomond Homes & Gardens Centre”. The centre is located within the boundaries of the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park, the first National Park in Scotland. Conveniently situated, just 30 minutes from Glasgow, easily reached by car, bus, or train. So, if you are looking for a falconry experience, meet some unique birds of prey, or just something to do in the Loch Lomond, Glasgow, or central Scotland area, why not come along and spend a few hours in the company of these remarkable birds.
 

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There are over thirty birds of prey, representing more than twenty species. Birds of all sizes, the Little Owl, Kestrels, Buzzards, Hawks, Falcons and Eagles, including “Orla”, our Golden Eagle.

Loch Lomond Bird of Prey Centre takes pride in customer care. Operating as a fully licensed zoo, the centre has a responsibility to educate members of the public on native species, and the global plight faced by many birds of prey. Where possible, each visitor is given a guided tour. The tour ensures our visitors are educated about each species, more importantly, they learn about the individual character and history of every bird.

So why not come in and meet our feathered companions, get up close, have a photograph taken, or just wander around. Visitors always leave enlightened, having learned a great deal more about birds of prey. Most are surprised at the number of species there are. All visitors comment on how close they can get to the birds, and appreciate their size and power. Above all, visitors recognise the passion of those who care for the birds.

Accreditation

Visit Scotland has granted Loch Lomond Bird of Prey Centre a “Three Star, Visitor Attraction” award. The daily operations within the centre are subject to inspection by the Scottish Government’s Zoo Licensing Authority, and West Dunbartonshire Council, Environmental Health Department.

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How to get here

The Centre is located one mile outside Balloch on the A811, Stirling Road, within the Loch Lomond Homes & Gardens Centre. By train, to Balloch, then taxi, or a fifteen minute walk. The local bus service, the 309 to Balmaha, passes the entrance to the centre.

 

Loch Lomond Bird of Prey Centre – REVIEW

Loch Lomond National Park is a great tourist attraction for tourism in Scotland, and Fishing  and Wildlife News is currently visiting these sorts of places in the country to promote what’s available on the Wildlife side site seeing.
On our travels we came across the LOCH LOMOND BIRD OF PREY CENTRE.

Loch Lomond
Birds of Prey Centre

Nestling amongst the trees behind the Loch Lomond Homes & Garden Center ,you enter the Bird Of Prey Center , the birds are housed in their own ideal separate wooden pine cabins.

Stewart Robertson kindly met and gave us a wonderful greeting at the center’s entrance, Stewart is a guy that certainly knows his stuff, without even asking he was giving us loads of information on the lives’ of the lovely selection and varieties of Birds of Prey and Owls on show, as soon as Stewart talks to each of the birds, you can see the bond that has developed between each other. It’s very humbling to see such a connection between the birds and their handler Stewart.

Now myself a keen wildlife artist was mesmerized by the colours in all of the birds and owls, at the moment I am studying colours and shapes of all Wildlife to help me produce more life-like drawings and paintings, and this visit to the Bird of Prey Center will certainly help me achieve my goals in becoming a better Wildlife Artist, hopefully producing more life-like images. For me it was certainly worth the visit alone and Stewart with all his knowledge and information gave me inspiration to now start raptor painting. Which I haven’t yet attempted. I took a series of  photographs and film for my reference when I decide to paint Birds of Prey,  

A truly magical experience for me and I will always remember how beautiful the birds and owls are that close up as my brother Raymond said, we’re that used to seeing them miles away from us and here we see them in all their glory close up  great,

We highly recommend you visit the
LOCK LOMOND BIRD OF PREY CENTER  

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