“From 1954 to 1999 the mountain hare population on moorland sites decreased by nearly 5% every year, which ecologists attributed to the planting of conifer forests on former grouse moors. But from 1999 to 2017 the scale of the moorland declines increased dramatically to over 30% every year, leading to counts in 2017 of less than 1% of original levels in 1954.
David Noble, chairman of the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust in Scotland, said data gathered by the GWCT over the same period as the study does not suggest such a decline in hare numbers on grouse moors.
“…we look forward to reviewing it, especially how the counts were made, because assessing hare numbers accurately is challenging.”” https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/aug/14/scotlands-mountain-hare-population-severe-decline
““Construction of the new golf course [formerly known as Foveran Dunes SSSI] involved earthworks, planting of trees, greens and fairways, drainage, irrigation and grass planting,” states one of the reports released by Scottish Natural Heritage inspectors. “This has affected the natural morphology of the dunes and interfered with natural processes. Most of its important geomorphological features have been lost or reduced to fragments. Nearby marine terraces have also been reduced to fragments.”” https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/jul/29/donald-trump-golf-environment-sssi-damaged-broken-promises
The promised 6000 jobs haven’t materialised, nor the amenities. On the plus side, Highland Council has recently approved a similar golf course at Coul Links, a designated UK Site of Special Scientific Interest, European Special Protection Area & Ramsar international wetland.
We should wait to ‘see what happens’ and welcome further information to the evidence base. We should avoid drawing any parallels or prematurely concluding that short-term mercenary proposals always trump legal conservation protection.
“The mass of humans – the sum of the body weights of all 7.5 billion people on Earth – now comprises 32% of the total mass of all vertebrates (mammals, reptiles, birds and amphibians) on land. Our domesticated animals, such as cattle, pigs and sheep, comprise another 65%. That is, humans and our domesticates comprise 97% of the mass of all terrestrial vertebrates – leaving only 3% for all of the Earth’s wild terrestrial vertebrates.”
Polish “environmental EcoLogic Group placed a tracker on the back of a white stork last year to track the bird’s migratory habits. It travelled some 3,700 miles (6,000kms), and was traced to the Blue Nile Valley in eastern Sudan before the charity lost contact. … Somebody found the tracker in Sudan, removed the sim card and put it in their own phone, where they then racked up 20 hours’ worth of phone calls. … The organisation has received a phone bill of over 10,000 Polish zloty ($2,700; £2,064)” https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/blogs-news-from-elsewhere-44645217
It’s good to stork, but beware of roaming charges, especially if you’re hard of heron.