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Biodiversity - Information and Updates

This page highlights projects that the Ecology and Biodiversity Team are currently working on and any relevant information updates.

Biodiversity - Group

Whitburn Town Walk Greening Project

West Lothian Council (WLC) has funding through the NatureScot Nature Restoration Fund (NRF) to enhance the Whitburn Town Walk for nature and the local community through a range of measures including tree and bulb planting; reduced mowing / meadow areas; pond / raingardens; woodland management and woodland planting.

Black Moss, Armadale

West Lothian Council (WLC) in partnership with Green Action Trust (GAT), have been making changes to Blackmoss nature park to improve the site for people and wildlife.

One of the main objectives was to remove the non-native conifer from the park and around the high school. These trees were becoming over-large and were subject to windthrow and had become an area for anti-social behaviour. Removing the conifer trees has meant we can replant the area with more appropriate species and reduce the seeding of trees onto the adjacent raised bog habitat.

Bog habitats are one of the most important stores of carbon. They're home to unique and important species such as Sphagnum moss species, as well as locally uncommon Cranberry (a small flowering plant which scrambles over the surface of the moss carpet) and Round-leaved Sundew (a carnivorous plant). Conifer trees seeding onto the bog negatively affect its ability to retain water, leading it dry out and making it less suitable for those specialist species. This leads to declines in species diversity and richness. 

The felled compartments are being restocked with a mixture of native broadleaves. Depending on the characteristics of the compartment (i.e. how wet or dry it is etc.), there will be a mixture of the following species planted: Willow, Alder, Oak, birch, Rowan and Hazel. While it will take time for the site to return to woodland, the chosen species will improve the overall biodiversity of the site and ensure long term carbon sequestration.


What has happened so far:

  • Habitat and species surveys to inform the management and pre-felling.
  • Felling works to remove the non-native conifer trees - Under SF felling licence
  • Pond work - removal of an area of vegetation and litter by the Lothian Conservation Volunteers and WLC Ranger Service.
  • Replacement tree planting of compartment 5 and 6 in connection with WLC Ranger Service, Arb team, Local Primary Schools, and the 28th West Lothian Scout Group.

What is planned:

  • Planting of compartments 1-4 in October/November 2024 by contractors

Further information