Coul Links, an unspoilt dune system wilderness, lies in East Sutherland and is home to an astonishing variety of rare wildlife. But, plans to build a golf course on this precious landscape will destroy much-needed habitats and threaten the butterflies, moths and other species that live there.
This site probably supports one of the largest colonies of Northern Brown Argus butterfly in the UK. It also provides shelter to a variety of rare butterflies and moths, including the Small Blue, Portland Moth and Lyme Grass moth and is home to a wide range of other threatened plants and animals including Cuckoo, Fonseca’s seed fly and Juniper.
This site is protected on an international, European and UK level and we cannot allow it to be lost. US President Donald Trump’s golf course near Aberdeen has damaged the ‘protected’ sand dunes so much that they will lose their conservation status. We must ensure this does not happen to Coul Links.
Following a campaign by locals and environmental groups, including the Save Coul Coalition, of which Butterfly Conservation is a member, the planning application for the golf course was examined at a Public Inquiry that began on 26 February 2019 and lasted for fifteen days. Dr Mark Young, a former trustee of Butterfly Conservation and the expert witness on Lepidoptera for the Coalition, presented his evidence to the Inquiry and was cross-examined by the applicant’s legal team. His contribution was thoroughly convincing, honest and professional, and drew praise from our Coalition partners.
Now that the Inquiry has ended the two reporters appointed by the Scottish Government who heard and read all the evidence will make their recommendations to Scottish Ministers. It is unclear how long this process will take, probably several months. The fate of Coul Links therefore ultimately lies in the hands of the Scottish Government.
We are therefore encouraging our supporters to contact Scottish Ministers to urge them to make the right decision. Visit this page for more information and to take part.
(The page above was created by the RSPB on behalf of the Coul Links Conservation Coalition, when you submit your details you can choose how and if you are contacted by them in the future).
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