The Flow Country Peatlands of Scotland: Foreword


Andersen R, Cowie N, Payne RJ & Subke J (2019) The Flow Country Peatlands of Scotland: Foreword. Mires and Peat, 23, pp. 1-2.

First paragraph: In the far north of Scotland, a vast and varied expanse of blanket peatland (Figure 1) extends across an area of 4,000 km2 within the historic counties of Caithness and Sutherland, from the foot of the mountains in the west to the coast in the east. It is the largest expanse of blanket mire in Europe (Lindsay et al. 1988) and the largest single terrestrial carbon store in the UK (Chapman et al. 2009). It is known as the Flow Country. The Flow Country has high conservation value, being of particular importance for its suite of breeding birds which includes the Common Scoter (Melanitta nigra), Greenshank (Tringa nebularia), Dunlin (Calidris alpina), Golden Plover (Pluvialis apricaria) and Hen Harrier (Circus cyaneus), and a refuge for many species normally found closer to the Arctic (Lindsay et al. 1988). The nature conservation importance of this area is reflected in the designation of over 1,300 km2 as Natura 2000 sites under the European Habitats and Birds Directives, including the largest terrestrial Special Area of Conservation (SAC) in the UK, and the current consideration of the Flow Country for World Heritage Site status.

Mires and Peat: Volume 23

Publication date31/12/2019
Publication date online19/10/2018
Date accepted by journal19/10/2018