Help save Coul Links

  • Coul Links is an internationally important habitat, home to rare and threatened plants and wildlife
  • It is under threat from plans for a new golf course
  • Let Highland Council know your views

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Dunes at Coul Links

How is Coul Links under threat?

A planning application has been submitted to Highland Council to build a new golf course on Coul Links.

The network of fairways, manicured greens and footpaths would fragment the rare dune environment. Wildlife will no longer be able to move freely within and between habitats and fragmented plant populations would be threatened by genetic isolation. Increased human activity across the site is likely to scare off many of the birds and animals currently using the site.

Why is Coul Links so special?

Coul Links is particularly special as a complete, undisturbed dune system with a unique mosaic of habitats, and is one of the last remaining in Scotland. Similar dune systems elsewhere have been destroyed by development.

It’s home to a rich variety of wildlife including many threatened species. Birds include over-wintering ducks, waders and geese and breeding terns, warblers, skylark, whinchat and reed bunting. Plants include sea centuary, purple milk-vetch, moonwort, grass of Parnassus and frog orchid. Recorded mammals include voles, wild cat, pine martens, badgers, stoats, weasels and bats. A wide range of insects are present, including very rare species such as the Fonseca’s seed-fly, which relies on undisturbed dunes and is confined to this area of East Sutherland.

SSSI, SPA and Ramsar

Coul Links is designated as Site of Scientific Interest (SSSI), Special Protection Area (SPA) and Ramsar site reflecting its national and international importance for wildlife.

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What can you do?

To make your views known and help save Coul Links, visit the planning pages on the Highland Council website (see link below) and follow the instructions in order to make a comment on the planning application ref: 17/04601/FUL.

Make your views known