Caithness wetlands and waders initiative
The wetlands and associated farmlands of Caithness support a range of declining or rare species, including a nationally important population of breeding waders, overwintering twite and the great yellow bumblebee.
- To provide a strategic approach to the provision of high-quality habitat for breeding waders, twite and the great yellow bumblebee through targeted Rural Priorities funding applications.
- To foster a collaboration between conservationists, agriculturalists and land managers which pools skills to maximise delivery for key habitats and species in Caithness.
- To identify land management projects (additional to RP options) of benefit to farms and key species and access funding to support them in Caithness.
- To supply equipment and expertise for the delivery of land management initiatives eg rush, management, scrape creation for waders.
- To raise awareness of the importance of the key species in Caithness and how appropriate land management on farms can help them to survive.
- Collaboration and submission of 10 Rural Priority farm plans under the banner of the Caithness Wetlands and Wildlife Initiative across approximately 6 square kilometres of farmland. These plans also contain measures for seed eating passerines, particularly twite.
- Holding of three land management workshops to demonstrate and discuss rush management, scrape creation for breeding waders and grassland/soil management.
- Awareness raising on key issues affecting Caithness wildlife through advocacy and policy initiatives, eg with local politicians and government bodies.
- Implementation of a survey project to map and assess current habitats and work with farmers on land management measures outwith agri-environment funding.
- Delivery of land management activities outwith SRDP funding, including rush management and scrape creation.
- Creation of promotional materials, including a CWWI logo, 6 land management advisory leaflets and an informational poster.
- Creation of case studies and press releases to promote good practice.
- Delivery of on-farm bird surveys by volunteer surveyors.