The Cairngorms Capercaillie Project (www.cairngormscapercaillie.scot) is urging birdwatchers to take a responsible attitude to looking for the threatened birds.
Jocasta Mann, communications officer for the Project, said that birders had been found on Capercaillie leks over the last week – multiple birders on multiple days.
Knowingly disturbing Capercaillie while they are lekking is a wildlife crime, and the police have already been involved.
She added: “We know the birding community cares about Capercaillie. It’s frustrating to therefore find birders actively undermining the breeding success of the birds, particularly as human disturbance has recently been cited as the main issue now affecting Capercaillie productivity, along with predation.
“When birders have been found the police have been called, and the rangers and volunteers working hard to keep Capercaillie safe this breeding season will continue to do this.
“The best thing birders can do for Capercaillie and the reputation of the birding community is to play their part and not look for Capercaillie this breeding season.”
You can read guidance for responsible Capercaillie watching at https://www.heatherlea.co.uk/userfiles/file/misc/Guidance-for-Responsible-Capercaillie-Watching.pdf
#Capercaille #Cairngorms #Birdwatching #Scotland