The Northwoods Network is an initiative to create more rewilded land across Scotland.

Northwoods provides a gateway for a diverse group of landowners to come together under a shared brand, ideology and agreed set of rewilding principles. Working in partnership, a chain of ecologically productive ‘stepping stones’ will be established across Scotland, in which animal and vegetation communities can develop, expand and disperse into the wider environment.

Northwoods seeks to improve ecological connectivity across the landscape by creating wildlife corridors and amplifying the impact of natural processes; but also to provide a platform to demonstrate the social and economic benefits of landscapes governed by rewilding principles.

“We need more, bigger, better and joined up.”
Sir John Lawton


To enable rewilding to function at a transformational scale, no single organisation can work in isolation. Northwoods is managed by SCOTLAND: The Big Picture, a charity that works with a diverse range of people to make rewilding happen across Scotland. The network's strength however, is in the innovative partnerships forged with individual landowners, communities and businesses, all committed to enriching Scotland’s nature and creating new opportunities for people.

Who can join?

Northwoods doesn’t seek to compete with landscape-scale partnerships elsewhere, but rather to ‘fill in the gaps’ by stitching together a tapestry of ecological nodes. We focus on medium-sized landholdings, usually between 50 and 1,000 acres, representing a patchwork of ownership and co-management models.

Benefits of partnership

  • A strong, recognisable and shared brand.
  • Access to communications resources to assist business development.
  • Shared experience and knowledge exchange, such as advice on restoration techniques and access to funding sources.
  • Collaboration on nature-based enterprise such as forest products, wildlife-friendly food and nature tourism.
  • Direct revenue through rewilding easements.
  • Potential for flexible ownership and co-management models.


  • Establishment of native woodland and enrichment of existing woodland.

    Establish woodland
  • Creation of ponds and wetlands.

    Create ponds
  • Naturalisation of watercourses and flood plains.

    Naturalise watercourses
  • Removal of wildlife migration barriers and improvement of habitat connectivity.

    Remove barriers
  • Potential for returning missing native species.

    Return species
  • Establishment of natural grazing patterns.

    Grazing patterns
  • Encouragement of recreation and community engagement.

  • Development of sustainable nature-based business.