Page last updated at 23:16 GMT, Sunday, 24 August 2008 00:16 UK

New forest to follow 1.6m deal

Wood ants
The area that has been bought is home to wood ants

Hundreds of thousands of trees are to be planted following a charity's purchase of Dundreggan Estate in Glen Moriston in the Highlands.

Trees for Life, which is based in Findhorn, Forres, has taken over 10,000 acres in a 1.6m deal.

It plans to plant 500,000 native trees and re-connect the forest between Glen Moriston and Glen Affric.

The organisation said the move would help protect declining numbers of wood ants and black grouse.

The purchase is Trees for Life's most important project to date and followed more than two years of negotiations.

Founder and executive director, Alan Watson Featherstone, said: "This is a massive step forward in achieving our vision of a renewed Caledonian Forest.

"It is a huge milestone for us, and we look forward to restoring Dundreggan into a wild landscape that the UK and Scotland can be proud of."

Debates on return of wild animals
11 Jun 08 |  Highlands and Islands

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