Community Woodland Larch Removal News

SPHN – Larch removal, Update as of Thursday 24 Feb 2022

Those that have managed to visit the woods will have noticed there has been little progress on felling or clearing the felled logs for the last week.

This is wholly down to the weather including wind, rain and now snow.

RTS has had an excavator on site this week preparing the stacking area and forming the main forwarding route between the burn and the stacking area. The main focus has been on managing the drainage in the area to minimise silt entering the burn when the forwarder starts operations.

Neither the harvester nor the forwarder have moved out of the stacking area all week and are unlikely to do so until early next week.

In addition RTS foresters have been called away on emergency works for the power, telecoms and rail companies following the recent storms.

The current weather forecast for next week is favourable and hopefully progress can be made. However forecast have proved to be somewhat inaccurate.

The order of felling and forwarding, when work recommences, shall be as noted in last week’s update, i.e.

The harvester will complete felling larch in Zone 1 and then move into Zone 2 while the forwarder will clear the cut logs from zone 1, and then move into Zone 2.

The harvester will move into Zone 3 when all larch in zone 2 is felled.

RTS will reset the barriers and signs before the harvester moves into new zones.

Please keep an eye on the signs at the entrances to the woods to check which Zone is being worked in.

As a reminder, the path between Gillies Hill sheds and the walled garden has been closed to the public. The open area next to the Walled Garden has also been closed off to the public as it will be used to stack logs prior to transportation off site.

Please adhere to all barriers and notices. These are primarily for public safety.


A further update will be provided next Thursday 3rd March.

Once operations recommence in the woodland:
Please avoid the zone where the harvester is operating. Paths in the zone will be closed off. Please follow all guidance and banksmen instructions to ensure your safety. Please keep a safe distance from the forwarder while it is loading and moving about the woodland.


For background information about why the larch is to be removed in this area, the Scottish Plant Health Notice, SPHN and outline plans, please visit previous updates from this page:    SPHN – Larch Removal


Measures to Protect the Squirrel Population

Measures undertaken to protect the squirrels are outlined in the blog on the CCDT website of 6th January:    Squirrel Dreys & Bird Boxes Blog

The felling zones have been rearranged and the order of felling changed to give the squirrels an easier route away from any felling.

10 squirrel feed boxes have been installed by volunteers to the south of the felling area.  See    Squirrel Feeder Boxes in the Woodland

The volunteers have done a great job in keeping the boxes filled with the special red squirrel feed. The squirrels have certainly found all 10 and are making very good use of the new on-site bistros. The feeders will be topped up until at least the completion of the felling operation.

Do send any pictures you manage to take of a red squirrel at the feeders to the email address below.

If you have any queries, comments or concerns or about the work being carried out, please email

Blog written by Jim O’Connor