Royal Deeside is home to an extremely vulnerable capercaillie population. Although low in number, the birds may potentially be a genetic lifeline to the larger capercaillie population in Strathspey. Work with communities in Deeside is therefore an essential part of building a future for capercaillie in the UK.
The project's work in Deeside began with a ‘blank sheet of paper’ and simply listening to people’s views about capercaillie conservation in the area in order to inform next steps.
Listening sessions conducted by an objective third party were held with 30 key people connected to the area, including landowners and landmanagers, businesses related to tourism and recreation, and representatives from interest groups including field sports and mountain biking.
The views shared in the listening sessions are summarised here and those shared by the majority were used to create an online survey for Deeside residents and visitors, so the views held in the wider community could also be explored. 768 Deeside residents and visitors took part in the survey, ensuring a 95% confidence level in the results. The results are available here and have enabled the project to draft an action plan to help capercaillie in Deeside that is based on how the majority of Deeside residents and visitors feel and is within the scope of the project.
The draft action plan to help capercaillie in Deeside is available here and in May it was reviewed with members of the community at a workshop in Ballater. See below for more detail.
Events and activities
Tuesday 31 May at the Victoria and Albert Halls in Ballater, Deeside residents, and people who work and visit the area, were invited to discuss and refine the draft action plan to help capercaillie in Deeside. The presentation shared at the workshop is here and the feedback received regarding the draft action plan is here.
Monday 11 July: A meeting with members of the local team in Royal Deeside who have volunteered to support the delivery of the action plan to help capercaillie in the Deeside Forest. The notes from this meeting are here.
Wednesday 28 September: A meeting for businesses and organisations involved with managing for visitors in Royal Deeside. This meeting was co-ordinated and led by the Cairngorms Business Partnership.
Friday 21 October: A meeting for landowners and managers in and around capercaillie areas in Royal Deeside. The notes from this meeting are here
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