Woodland grouse seminar papers

Capercaillie and black grouse and are two rare and threatened species of grouse which depend wholly or partly on woodlands.

In recent years, a lot of effort has been put into the conservation of these species to try to halt and reverse the decline in their populations.

A seminar was held on September 29th 2011 at Birnam to take stock of these efforts and chart a way forward for conserving the two species in Scotland. The event was organised jointly by Forestry Commission Scotland, the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds and Scottish Natural Heritage.

The partner organisations hope that participants will reflect on the outcomes of the seminar to help plan future efforts to conserve both species.

The presentations and notes on issues emerging from discussion on the day are brought together here. The notes from the Question and Discussion sessions are intended only to capture a flavour of the points made by speakers and audience members, and should not be taken to represent the views of any organisation.

Programme and presentations

09.00 - 09.25 Registration

09.30 - 09.35 Introduction, Bob McIntosh – Director, Forestry Commission Scotland (FCS)

09.35 – 12.30 Session 1: Population Status, Habitat Requirements and Major Influences. Chair: Bob McIntosh (FCS)

A series of short presentations to summarise knowledge of number and distribution of each species, their habitat requirements and the influence of management and other factors on their population status.

09.35 – 09.45: The current status of Capercaillie (PDF 231k). Sue Haysom, Policy and Advice Officer, Ornithology, Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH)

09.45 - 10.10: The habitat requirements of Capercaillie (PDF 5.7Mb). Tim Poole, Capercaillie Project Officer, Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB)

10.10 – 10.25 The status of Scottish Black Grouse (PDF 4.1Mb). Dave Baines, Head of Upland Research, Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT)

10.25 – 10.45 Tea & Coffee

10.45 – 11.40 Habitat Requirements of Black Grouse

A series of 10 minute presentations on various aspects of current knowledge:

11.40 – 11.55 Variables correlated with capercaillie breeding success, and the effect of human disturbance (PDF 885k). Ron Summers, Research Biologist, RSPB

11.55 -12.20 Questions for speakers and discussion

12.20 -12.30 Summary of Key Points from Session 1. Duncan Orr-Ewing, Head of Species and Land Management, RSPB

12.30 -13.30 Lunch

13.30-14.45 Session: 2 Current Actions and Incentives. Chair: Adam Smith, Director Scotland, GWCT

What is being achieved by the actions of public bodies and other landowners and managers?

13.30 – 13.50 Black grouse and the SRDP (PDF 55k). Jo O'Hara, Natural Resources Division, Scottish Government

13.50 – 14.10 Action on the National Forest Estate (PDF 5.5Mb). Kenny Kortland, Species Ecologist, FCS

14.10 – 14.30 A view from private landowners and managers (PDF 286k). Andrew Midgley, Senior Policy Officer, Scottish Land & Estates

14.30 – 14.45 Session 2 questions and discussion

14.45 – 16.00 Session 3 Conclusions. Chair: Adam Smith, GWCT

What more could and should be done and how might regulatory and grant-aid measures best be targeted?

14.45 – 15.00 A View of Future Opportunities Roddy Fairley - Programme Manager for Biodiversity, SNH (notes from the presentation are on the session 3 page).

15.00 – 16.00 The Way Ahead for our Woodland Grouse: Discussion
Facilitator and Summariser: Colin Galbraith, Consultant

Future Opportunities presentation notes and Session 3 discussion items

16.00 - 16.30 Close - Depart</p