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28 September, 2017

Wild day at National Nature Reserve

Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross Liberal Democrat MP Jamie Stone will unveil a family open day at one of Scottish Natural Heritage’s most picturesque National Nature Reserves on Saturday 7 October.

Among the attractions will be wild Tai Chi; cycling and fitness activities; guided walks; wild food cookery demonstrations with Catriona Frankitti; a venison barbecue with music from local group Baile An Or; and autumn food foraging walks with noted wild food expert Mark Williams.

Loch Fleet NNR boasts magnificent coastland and pinewoods set in stunning landscapes around a tidal loch basin. Throughout the year, seals and their pups are hauled-out on the mud banks close to shore. The reserve also supports many migratory waders and wildfowl during autumn and winter.

Mr Stone said: “As SNH know from my phone calls, I take a great interest in nature. Not only does the reserve promote public interest in our flora and fauna, but it also shows how important it is to preserve our unique local environment if our plants and wildlife are to continue to flourish.

“All of this is good – but the icing on the cake for an older bloke like me is that taking a walk in the country is thoroughly good for you. I am greatly looking forward to the day.”

He will be joined by councillor Deirdre Mackay, deputy chair of the Sutherland Community Partnership and Graham Neville, SNH’s operations manager.

The family open day is being organised in close collaboration with the Sutherland Community Partnership and will have four themed activities to encourage people to get more engaged with our superb countryside: naturally active, naturally tasty, naturally useful and naturally relaxing.

Councillor Mackay said: “The Sutherland Community Partnership brings together public agencies, third sector organisations and other key community groups to work collaboratively with local people to deliver better outcomes and address inequalities. Our partnership is already demonstrating how we are working together and more collaboratively with communities. And this event is an excellent example of this in action with many different groups coming together to raise awareness of our work and to show how important a clean and natural environment is to all our lives.”

Mr Neville said: “The outstanding natural environment showcased by Loch Fleet, and the suite of National Nature Reserves across Scotland, offers us a chance to experience nature at first hand and helps deliver a range of benefits for local communities from greater health and wellbeing to providing us with better places to live and work.”

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NatureScot is Scotland's nature agency. We work to enhance our natural environment in Scotland and inspire everyone to care more about it. Our priority is a nature-rich future for Scotland and an effective response to the climate emergency. For more information, visit our website at or follow us on Twitter at

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