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Be part of Future Nature

We face a global nature crisis and even in our most special landscapes, nature as a whole is in real trouble. If we do not halt and reverse this decline, then our world and all of us will have a poorer and more uncertain future.

Our Future Nature programme aims to deliver a positive, exciting vision of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park as an exemplar where people can understand, experience and contribute towards a shared vision for restoring nature.

To do this we are working with a range of partners and stakeholders to develop a Future Nature Route Map focusing on new projects to restore nature at landscape-scale in the National Park.

But there are steps we can all take, in our daily lives, in our communities, or as a business or landowner, that can help deliver a more positive future for nature and a wealth of benefits for everyone.

From small steps in your own home, garden and village to large scale landscape restoration projects, our communities, people, businesses and organisations all have a crucial role to play in creating a resilient, nature-rich National Park, where abundant wildlife and a healthy natural environment provide a wealth of benefits for both people and nature.

We’ll keep updating this page with opportunities and other ways you can be part of Future Nature. We are actively looking for new funding opportunities and other ways to support anyone who wants to develop or deliver nature restoration projects in the National Park. So, if you have a project idea – please fill in this short form so we can add you to our project list:

If you have any questions – please get in touch at futurenature@lochlomond-trossachs.org 

As an individual

woodpecker-on-branch-red-top-of-head-and-black-and-white-body

Woodpecker

You may not think small changes will make a big difference to restoring nature in the National Park, but the simple steps we can all do, collectively can make a huge contribution. There are many ways you can make a small but valuable difference at an individual level, here’s some simple steps we can all take:

You could consider adding a bird box to provide a welcome nesting area or allow an area of your lawn to grow wild, creating a mini jungle for insects to hide in, and if there’s wildflowers there, it’s great for bees too.

Check out NatureScot’s Make Space for Nature resource, which breaks down ways to get involved by season.

RSPB’s Nature on Your Doorstep has lots of ideas, like creating a leaf mould cage to provide a cosy shelter for hedgehogs and toads.

The Wildlife Trusts has an abundance of fun stuff to introduce more wildlife to your garden, like how to create a container garden for wildlife if you have limited space.

Did you know that rhododendron ponticum is an Invasive Non Native Species (INNS)? And while it may look pretty in your garden, it escapes from gardens to become wild rhododendron jungles, taking over whole sections of our native woodlands and forests. It blocks out light to the forest floor, so no other plants stand a chance. You can help by removing rhodededron ponticum from your garden. Try replacing with native alternatives for your garden: shrubs like holly, crab apple, wild cheery, hazel, hawthorn and juniper.

If you like getting out and about, why not incorporate some activity into your plans that helps nature? Get the kids involved and make it an adventure! Many organisations appreciate help recording what you see when out and about, like the Big Butterfly Count or Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels survey, and from the comfort of your own garden, the Big Garden Birdwatch.

When it comes to how you live, there’s so much you can do to help by being mindful of your lifestyle choices. From something as simple as buying peat free compost for the garden, to banking that supports peatland restoration.

You can also help, right here in the National Park by volunteering with us. Our volunteers find being hands-on in our conservation work very rewarding.

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As a community

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Community volunteers working on the River Goil revetment project

Could you be a community activist, making sure nature restoration is included in local consultations, local development plans and working with organisations like community councils, to inform your community on the key role of nature for us all?

You could work with local landowners to deliver projects together, like planting trees, growing wildflowers, or installing ponds, bug hotels and bird and bat boxes – these can be small scale, such as in school grounds or in a park, or working on larger community projects.

Don’t underestimate the power of working together with your community to make significant change. Check out this blog on the River Goil Green Revetment Project, where Lochgoil Community Trust joined forces with Argyll Fisheries Trust and the National Park Authority to support one of Scotland’s most iconic fish species.

Feeling inspired? You too can get involved in fundraising, deliver projects and even consider taking over bits of land to manage for nature and for your community. Here are some resources and case studies on what’s possible if you want to think big!

Please contact us if you have a great project idea that could help protect nature in the National Park, futurenature@lochlomond-trossachs.org

 

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As a business

man-with-dark-hair-wearing-red-jacket-helps-young-boy-wearing-blue-hat-to-plant-a-tree

Tree Planting

More and more of us are considering the impact the businesses and services we use have on climate and nature. Businesses who respond to these changes in customer behaviour, attitudes and expectations can tap into that market and make a positive environmental contribution in the process.

Could your businesses contribute towards funding a local green project? Even small donations can make a big difference to projects in your community

If your business premises include a greenspace, consider making space for nature, with bird boxes and bug hotels. Check out Wildlife Trusts ‘How to help wildlife at work’ resources for an abundance of ideas on how to create a peaceful area for colleagues and wildlife. There’s also great advice on reducing the impact of your business, like recycling.

Businesses can play a vital role in protecting and restoring nature in supply chains. Use your purchasing power and buy from other businesses which take responsibility or have a positive nature impact. Nature Positive Business | WWF (panda.org)

Staff volunteer days are great for morale and the planet! Why not get together as a team to participate in tree planting, marine litter picks or wildlife surveys.

Get in touch if you’d like to discuss developing more nature restoration within you business plans, futurenature@lochlomond-trossachs.org

 

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As a landowner

People on highland with a digger surveying the peatland landscape

Peatland restoration work

Future Nature is a bold and ambitious vision that all of us can contribute to but our landowners and managers will be amongst our most crucial partners.

We need to work together to deliver nature restoration across all our forestry, agricultural and other land. This doesn’t mean nature instead of our existing land uses, but it means making more space for natural processes and allowing nature to thrive.

Some examples of key things you can do our you land:

If you are a landowner or manager in the National Park and would like to talk to us about opportunities to improve nature for future generations, email us at futurenature@lochlomond-trossachs.org

 

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