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Case Studies > Wildlife, Conservation and Tourism

Aigas Estate


Case Study Wildlife, Conservation and Tourism Aigas Estate www.helpingithappen.co.uk
Case Study Wildlife, Conservation and Tourism The 600-acres Aigas estate was discovered on the verge of ruin by the naturalist and author Sir John Lister-Kaye in 1976, and in a bid to save the estate, the idea of creating nature conservation has led to what we see today. 

The estate has been offering fully inclusive, small-group learning holidays, and study courses for the past 40 years, as well as school education programmes. The key goal is to teach visitors and children about the incredible wildlife, habitats and landscapes of the Scottish Highlands and Islands.

Their successful Naturedays programme sees about 5,000 children every year from Scotland, who come and learn more about the work the estate does in preserving the wildlife, and inspire them. All the programmes on offer have strong ties with the Curriculum for Excellence, and helps teachers justify taking their students out of the classroom. The lessons allow the children and young people to get involved, explore, interact and connect with the natural landscape around them.

One of the biggest projects Aigas have undertake is the preservation of the Scottish Wildcat, and to bring it back from extinction. Since 2011 the Aigas Field Centre has been contributing to the national programme of bringing the Wildcat back, and has partnered up with Scottish Wildcat Action, which works to protect what is left of the current population and the conservation breeding programme, which is led by the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland.

Wildcats and domestic cats can breed to create hybrid cats, which is the greatest threat to the gene pool of Scottish Wildcats. Their decline has been linked to a mixture of disease and persecution, historically from gamekeepers, who have often mistaken them for feral cats and their threat to game birds.

Aigas have a breeding programme with the aim of working together to ensure the wildcat captive population grows, before they will be released into the wild once the environment is deemed safe enough.
Scottish Land & Estates
Stuart House, Eskmills Business Park, Musselburgh, EH21 7PB

t 0131 653 5400   e info@scottishlandandestates.co.uk   w www.scottishlandandestates.co.uk