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OUR STORY

"Scotland could be a world leader in restoring its broken ecosystems but we have to look beyond convention and see rewilding as a huge opportunity.” 
Peter Cairns, Executive Director.

  • Scotland’s native pinewoods cover just 3% of their natural range.

    Centuries of felling, burning and overgrazing means that the vast wild forest, which once stretched almost from summit to sea, is reduced to just tiny, isolated fragments.

  • Scottish wildcats are clinging on by a claw.

    Our only remaining native cat teeters on the brink of extinction. Habitat loss, persecution and inter-breeding with feral cats has taken the Highland Tiger to the edge.

  • 80% of Scotland’s peatlands are degraded.

    Huge expanses of Scotland’s peatlands have been drained and burned releasing carbon into the atmosphere and increasing the flow of water into rivers.

  • All of Scotland’s large carnivores are extinct.

    Apex predators are a crucial element in a healthy ecosystem. Lynx, wolves and bears are now recolonising much of mainland Europe, but here they remain absent.

  • 50% of Scotland’s rivers are in poor health.

    Scotland has more than 125,000 km of rivers and streams but many have been diverted, straightened, deepened, embanked, dammed and reinforced, leading to a devastating loss of biodiversity.

  • 189

    Of 218 countries worldwide measured for their biodiversity intactness, Britain ranks 189. We have become one of the most nature-depleted countries on the planet.

SCOTLAND: The Big Picture is a charity that works with a diverse range of people to make rewilding happen.

Our vision is of a vast network of rewilded land and water across Scotland, where wildlife flourishes and people thrive.

It’s time to rewrite nature’s story.

With 20 years’ experience in conservation media, our core team established SCOTLAND: The Big Picture in 2016. Recognising that large areas of land and sea could benefit from a different future, we became the first organisation in Scotland wholly dedicated to championing rewilding, igniting fresh thinking and helping to mainstream the rewilding conversation.

Today, as an ambitious, fleet-footed team, our goal is to enable rewilding at all scales. We work in a spirit of collaboration with many different interest groups, to promote and support rewilding, and to demonstrate its benefits for nature, climate and people.

Scotland’s ecological decline is not inevitable. We have the tools to become a world-leading rewilding nation, where nature in all its complexity is reawakened. At its core however, rewilding is about people’s values and priorities. While many see rewilding as a pathway to a future with greater abundance and diversity of life, others perceive it as a threat to traditional land management.

We recognise that rewilding cannot be rolled out at the scale necessary to address climate breakdown and biodiversity loss, without the support of land managers, who are so often portrayed as the problem when in fact, they are an essential part of the solution.

Our business is not telling people what to do. Instead, we look for solutions within a shared vision of restoration and recovery.

Meet our team here