The Biosphere

The Biosphere

The Galloway and Southern Ayrshire UNESCO Biosphere covers a region of over 5,200sq kms, comprising a biologically diverse and unique range of habitats including river catchments, native woodlands and peatlands, to name just a few. Nestled amongst this vast area are communities ranging in size from towns to tiny hamlets, some of whom have chosen to become ‘Biosphere Communities’ as Gatehouse of Fleet has. 

Connecting Cairnsmore

Cairnsmore of Fleet National Nature Reserve (NNR) is one of the wildest areas in Southwest Scotland. The reserve, managed by NatureScot, is one of the core areas of the Galloway & Southern Ayrshire UNESCO Biosphere - an international designation based on the region’s outstanding landscape, wildlife and cultural heritage. The reserve is an exceptional area of high conservation value due to its blanket bog and peatland habitat. Rivers and old railway lines provide physical connectivity between the landscape of Cairnsmore of Fleet NNR and the communities of Creetown and Gatehouse-of-Fleet, but there are many more deeper connections between this internationally important landscape and its gateway communities.

The Winter Wildlife of Cairnsmore of Fleet

The Galloway and Southern Ayrshire UNESCO Biosphere recently completed a series of sessions exploring one of the core areas of the Biosphere, Cairnsmore of Fleet National Nature Reserve. ‘Connecting Cairnsmore’ was a series of discussions and guided walks exploring the wildlife, habitat and history of Cairnsmore of Fleet, one of the wildest and most remote landscapes in southern Scotland and an area of extremely high conservation value. Owned and managed by NatureScot, Cairnsmore of Fleet NNR is also a site of Special Scientific interest (SSSi) with nationally important blanket bogs and rare upland plants, and is one of the largest unforested uplands left in the Galloway Hills.