Wildlife struggles as climate change bites

SCOTLAND’S wildlife is struggling to recover due to biodiversity loss and climate change, according to experts.

Figures published this morning by NatureScot, the Scottish Government agency known previously as Scottish Natural Heritage, showed species are struggling to increase their numbers or to spread their locations.

More than 2,800 species are stuck at 1990s’ levels, which were below historic baselines.

Nick Halfhide, NatureScot’s director of nature and climate change, said: “Scotland’s wildlife, on land and at sea, has a vital role in strengthening ecological health and helping us to build resilience in the face of the twin crises of biodiversity loss and climate change.

“These results show the effects of climate change are already being witnessed through changes to Scotland’s species in our lifetime.

“Ambitious targets, such as those agreed at COP15 in Montreal, will help drive Scotland’s progress in an international context.

“The Scottish Government’s Biodiversity Strategy will cement the change required to not only halt biodiversity loss, but reverse it.

“We must grab every opportunity to protect the health of our natural world for generations to come before it’s too late.”

Read more stories on Scottish Field’s wildlife pages.

Plus, get your skates on so you don’t miss Andy Dobson’s article about flapper skates in the February issue of Scottish Field magazine.