As part of our work in support of Scotland's Moorland Forum, we organised one of the three annual meetings of the Forum at Langholm on 12 Jun 09, and this included a visit to Langholm Moor with the project team. Although I could not be present (I escaped from hospital that day) it was glorious weather and a perfect opportunity for some interesting discussion on the moor. Thanks go to the project team, led by Graeme Dalby (Project Manager) and Simon Lester (Head keeper), for their help in running the day.
Much controversy surrounds the work at Langholm, both the original Joint Raptor Study that reported in 1997 and the new project that was launched in September 2007. It remains my view that this project is worthy of full support. Naturally there are concerns about buffer feeding of Hen harriers, burning and predator control but this a rare opportunity for scientific monitoring to work alongside land managers and the data will be fascinating. The work is unlikely to give us all the answers but it will increase our knowledge and understanding of how a moribund moor responds to management input. For more information have a look at the project's website.