The Project | Scotland

The pine marten in Scotland

The VWT’s work in Scotland has focused on monitoring the recovery and range expansion of the pine marten population. The Trust undertook the first national pine marten survey of Scotland, England and Wales in the early 1980s. More recently, in 2012, the Trust completed a pine marten expansion zone survey in collaboration with Scottish Natural Heritage, to provide up-to-date information on current pine marten distribution. The survey found that the pine marten population has continued to expand its range south and east of the Highlands and has re-colonised many parts of its former range in central and eastern Scotland.

This work was subsequently followed in 2013 by a distribution survey of southern Scotland. This survey found that pine martens are now present in parts of the Scottish borders and other areas south of the Central Belt where they have been absent for almost 200 years.

The reports of both surveys can be downloaded for free: 2012 report and 2013 report.

In order to monitor the potential for re-colonisation of the north of England, we will continue to collect records of pine martens in southern Scotland as they spread south towards the English border.