Our Bog Squad is a team of volunteers that restore lowland raised bogs on sites across Scotland in collaboration with partner organisations and landowners. The restoration work is aimed at re-wetting damaged bogs, so that natural flora & fauna can thrive and peat formation can take place again in the future. Lowland raised bogs are a special type of wetland which is very acidic and nutrient poor, and is associated with some specialised plant species such as Bog Rosemary.
After drying their wellies over the winter months the Bog Squad volunteers were back in action last weekend restoring one of Scotland’s special bogs. They spent the day at Lenzie Moss, a Local Nature Reserve, bordering the main Glasgow to Edinburgh railway line in the small town of Lenzie in east Dunbartonshire. Its boardwalk is a popular attraction for local walkers who go there to enjoy the fresh air, peace and tranquillity as well as all the delights that a lowland raised bog has to offer: butterflies and dragonflies, cotton grass and sun-dews, and if you are really lucky snipe and woodcock can be seen.
Over the last six months, with the help of PeatlandACTION funding the Bog Squad volunteers have been working to improve the condition of this fragile bog habitat. Despite successful extensive restoration to the central moss area the edges of the bog have remained drier and are vulnerable to invasive birch seedlings spreading from the nearby deciduous woodland. If left these trees can begin to suck vital water resources away from the moss. This is where the Bog Squad comes in - by hand-pulling these seedlings we can keep the birch at bay and protect the moss and its vital peat carbon store from drying out.
In September 2017 the volunteers managed to clear around 1.5 hectares of seedlings from the moss, a superb effort! Undeterred the volunteers were back last weekend to continue where they had left off. Restoring these unique wetlands is vitally important as peat bogs have a role in carbon storage, as wildlife havens and as green spaces which local communities can use and enjoy.
For future volunteering opportunities with the Bog Squad please see here