The UK is facing a nature crisis. But here at Couldoran, we've been given the chance to fight back - by creating a haven for rare and threatened wildlife. We need your help to revitalise this fragile landscape which borders Ben Shieldaig, our mountain in the West Highlands. Careful tree planting and restoration will give our new joined up estate a fresh lease of life. And rare species such as the golden eagle, red squirrel and pine marten can find a home. Please donate to our urgent appeal to help Scotland's wildlife. We can't miss this golden chance. Thank you.

4,500 acres
of mountains, rivers and lochs
It's a huge chunk of land with incredible potential for some of Scotland's most iconic wildlife.
£8 million
is what we need to raise
This will mean we can fund the site's restoration and management for years to come.

Together we can transform Couldoran’s bare landscape into a vibrant wildlife habitat

In 2019 the Woodland Trust did something truly remarkable – we bought our first mountain!

Thanks to the amazing generosity of supporters who contributed to our appeal, we were able to take Ben Shieldaig in the West Highlands of Scotland into our care. Now we're pleased to announce that we've been able to double it in size by acquiring the neighbouring Couldoran Estate.

It borders Ben Shieldaig to the south and west and lies in Scotland’s rainforest zone - a climate characterised by high rainfall, mild temperatures and clean air which covers less than 1% of the planet. Like its neighbour, the hills of Couldoran were once part of a network of diversely structured woodland habitats that blanketed Scotland’s coast. Today only individual trees and isolated areas of woodland remain, thanks largely to historical deforestation and a significant increase in deer grazing.

Unless we can restore these fragile habitats, the woods and wildlife that rely on them could be lost forever.

Thank you to everyone who has contributed to our appeal and given us the confidence to complete this incredible acquisition. We had to move faster than anticipated but were able to use some of our financial reserves to finalise the transaction. We are still fundraising to help cover acquisition costs and to manage the Estate and transform the landscape into a wildlife haven. A combined £8M in total will help us achieve our vision.

Our vision for Couldoran

Our vision is to manage Couldoran jointly with Ben Shieldaig as one single landscape.

Credit: Peter Cairns / naturepl.com

A haven for wildlife

Next door at Shieldaig we have golden eagle, peregrine, red throated diver, greenshank and golden plover. Pine martens, water voles, badgers, red squirrels and mountain hares have also been spotted. If we can improve canopy cover at Couldoran we expect to find many of these species moving in as their range and habitat improves and expands. Wildcats were spotted in the area until the 1960s and according to local knowledge, much more recently than that. Could Couldoran be home again to wildcat?

Credit: John MacPherson / WTML

Habitat restoration

Couldoran’s landscape is currently in poor condition with just pockets of native broadleaf trees, clinging to inaccessible ravines and gorges. We want to establish a healthy and resilient mosaic of habitats across the entire catchment. This will include creating and restoring thriving native and montane woodland, with carefully planted trees and natural regeneration, gradually removing invasive species and protecting peatland and blanket bog - a priceless carbon store.

Credit: John MacPherson / WTML

Access for people

Access is an important part of our aspiration for Couldoran. Right now only one informal track exists. We want to upgrade this and improve public access to what is a largely unexplored area with remarkable views.

We still need your support

While the land in now in our care, in total the project will cost £8 million if we're to achieve our ambitious vision for this landscape. Every penny you give will move us one step closer to creating a thriving mountain haven in Scotland's rainforest zone.

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Visit neighbouring Ben Shieldaig for yourself

A Woodland Trust Wood

Ben Shieldaig Estate

Strathcarron

1539.67 ha (3804.52 acres)

Explore Ben Shieldaig