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Wildlife, trees and plants at Pressmennan Wood

Pressmennan Wood is an important site for wildlife. Animal species found in the wood include roe deer, fox, hare, stoat, weasel, vole, mouse, badger and bat. Otters have been recorded around the lake and burn, which also provide a habitat for amphibians and aquatic invertebrates.

The site’s dead wood encourages wood-boring beetles. Other insect species include blue damselfly, angle shades moth, speckled wood butterfly, seven-spot ladybird, and caddisfly. The comma butterfly, rare in Scotland, has also been recorded in the wood.

Birds include tawny owl, buzzard, sparrowhawk, greater spotted woodpecker, treecreeper, jay, jackdaw, bullfinch, titmouse, goldcrest, wren, whitethroat, blackcap, redstart, spotted flycatcher,  nightjar and nuthatch, which is spreading north and is becoming more common in many areas of southern Scotland. On the lake, you can see mallard, mute swan, moorhen, great crested grebe, little grebe and the occasional kingfisher and dipper.

(Photo: WTML)

Trees and Plants

Broadleaf trees include sessile oak, beech, sycamore, ash, rowan, birch, willow and cherry. The conifers planted in the late 1950s consist mainly of European larch with some Norway and Sitka spruce, Douglas fir, and Scots pine, along with small pockets of western red cedar and western hemlock.

Ground flora is dominated by woodrush, with lady fern, male fern and buckler fern, mosses and liverworts thriving where there is moist shade. Other plants and flowers include bluebell, violet, wood sorrel, primrose, self-heal, speedwell, dog’s mercury, broom, ramson (wild garlic), bugle, foxglove, holly, honeysuckle, bramble and wild raspberry. On the site’s highest slopes, soft grasses are interspersed with gorse.

The woodland also has a wide range of fungi, including those of the boletus family, milk-cap, brown roll-rim, leafy brain fungus, jelly ear, and stinkhorn.