Poultry unit planning application at Begbie Wood

(Photo: WTML)

Senseless destruction of an irreplaceable wildlife habitat. That’s the future for an ancient woodland in Scotland if plans to house thousands of chickens in Begbie Wood, East Lothian get the go-ahead.

We need you to help stop it happening. Act now before it’s too late.

Hamilton Farming Enterprises Ltd wants to build a free range poultry unit for 32,000 hens in the centre of an area of ancient woodland, with a further 16 hectares used as their ranging area.

While the Trust is hugely supportive of free range hens with access to tree cover, in this case it will be in an area of irreplaceable ancient woodland.

We can’t let this happen. As well as the direct loss from the poultry unit being built, the manure that hens produce will increase the concentration of ammonia in the woodland and change the chemical structure of the soil.

One of the most important aspects of ancient woodland is its undisturbed soil. But hens enjoy nothing more than scratching at the soil for grubs and will destroy anything growing on the woodland floor.

This change in the chemical structure and the scratching of chickens will ultimately destroy all features of ancient woodland.

Update: Many thanks for all your responses, hopefully the council will heed your call! We’ll make sure to keep you updated once we hear any further news concerning this application