Watch this space - we'll be doing some
birch removal on the Moss
Burns Supper: 27 January 2018
Once again, the haggis
had a hard time of it. It made a dash for the
door but Dr Carr was merciless with his broad
sword. The immortal memory was by Professor
Robert Crawford of St Andrews University, who
dealt with Burns as a sex pest. As always, many
locals made pests of themselves by singing,
reciting, playing, writing haikus, and downing
prodigious amounts of whisky. A good time had by
all. Except the haggis.
butterflies, dragonflies, bumblebees
There's an amazing
number of insects living in the Moss - and the
diversity has increased a lot because of the work
that has been done to restore the peat dome.
Butterfly Conservation http://www.eastscotland-butterflies.org.uk/
an incredible job of monitoring and recording
moths and butterflies across the UK. Our local
people are George Guthrie and Duncan Davidson. If
you ever see strange lights in the Moss late at
night, there's a good chance that it's George
trapping moths and butterflies ready to identify,
count and record them. Sometimes they put on
special events for us too.
shows what they've seen on the Moss so far in 2017
- there's 102 species.
Christmas Tree Day: 17
Quite a local
tradition now - loads of people came and got
their Christmas Trees from the Moss.
Access Road Repair: 15 Oct 2017
You might have
noticed that the track into the Moss from
Scotlandwell was full of holes. Well, we
looked into them (!) and decided that
something had to be done. The owners of the
road (a big utility company, no names but you
could always protest by stopping drinking any
water) have always resisted doing any repairs
so we decided that we'd just go ahead and fix
the track ourselves. The Portmoak Festival
donated funds for materials - a big heap of
Type 1 - and a gang of us went down and got
the job done.
Apple Day: 1 Oct 2017
We’ve been doing
this for a few years now and this was another
enjoyable event, despite the rain. In fact,
maybe because of the rain - we moved indoors
to the Village Hall and about 60 people came
to get their apples turned into juice. Or
their neighbour's. (Note the punctuation.
Apostrophe 's'. It's their apples that got
turned into juice, not the actual neighbours).
The Portmoak Time Machine: 23 July 2017
Our favorite Time
Lord brought his tardis to Portmoak Moss as
part of the "Our Portmoak" series of events.
Andrew McBride of SNH took a peat core of
about 6 metres depth - that is to say he went
back in time by about 6000 years. Facinating.
We could clearly see changes in climate (wet
periods, dry periods) and in vegetation types
through the history of the Moss. There was
even a well preserved, bright blue insect
carapice from about 5500 years ago. More than
20 people attended and much enjoyed the event.
Especially small boys who were able to smear
each other with some really, really old mud.
Dawn Chorus: 23 July 2017
23 to 23
July was a UK-wide dragonfly event. They were
duly spotted on the Moss.
British Trust for
Ornithology: 27 May 2017
Gail the bird ringer(their legs, not their
necks) set up three nets in the field opposite
the village hall. Didn't use feeders or tape
lures (latter forbidden in the breeding
season), so relied on birds moving through the
area. Nets were set up among small trees so that
birds flying between them would be trapped. In
total caught 11 birds, all unringed: blue tit
(3), great tit (3), bullfinch, chiffchaff,
robin, willow warbler (2).
or heard great spotted woodpeckers, green
woodpecker, garden warbler, blackcap, white
throat, buzzard, sparrowhawk, garden warbler,
wren, thrush, blackbird, chaffinch, redpoll.
Dawn Chorus: 6 May 2017
A 04:00 start for
a dawn chorus event, led by Scott Paterson. It
was International Dawn Chorus Day so crazy
people all around the world were making their
blearly eyed way outdoors. We didn't see many
birds but heard plenty and as always, Scott
was a mine of information. Great event
attended by about a dozen of our local
Christmas Tree Pruning: 23 April 2017
A dozen folk went
down to the Moss to prepare Christmas trees
for our December event. By taking care of
split growth and giving them a bit of space
and shaping at this time of year, everything
is much easier in December.
Annual General Meeting: 18 April 2017
bearers were elected - well, re-elected. Jeff
Gunnell is the Chair, Louise Batchelor is the
Secretary and Lesley Botten is the Treasurer.
We're in good shape financially with enough
funds to be able to keep putting on public
events free of charge but also able to respond
rapidly to opportunities, like buying more
land or paying for projects, should a suitable
opportunity crop up.
We looked back on what we've done in the last
year and we're pleased with the balance
between management activities and public
The constitution is here.
And if you want to see the minutes of the AGM,
they are here.
Fame at last: The Times features PCW: 17
See this: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/scotland/returning-the-land-to-bog-standard-rg68pnwnh
PCWG in parliament and with the Climate
Change Secretary: March 2017
event for bogs: the Peatland Action programme
has been relaunched. Much of the funding for
the projects that we have been doing to
restore Portmoak Moss has come from Peatland
Action via SNH. PCWG were represented at
Holyrood when the programme was introduced to
MSPs and also at the Red Moss, near Edinburgh
where the Climate Change Secretary saw just
what bogs and mosses are like and why they are
important. We were expecting a chap in a
pinstripe suit, bowler hat and carrying a
furled umberella, but it turned out to be
Portmoak Moss viewed from
Kilmagad Wood, with Loch Leven and Benarty
Hill in the background
views, delightful walking and an ambitious
project to restore a commercial plantation to a
raised peat bog.
at Scotlandwell, near to Kinross and the M90,
about midway between the Forth Road Bridge and