The team behind a north-east beauty spot hopes it can save its meadows and grasslands by hosting a summer of celebrations.
Loch of Strathbeg, near Fraserburgh, will host a range of events to educate and inspire local schoolchildren about the grasslands and the wildlife that lives there.
To do this, RSPB Scotland wants to recruit a dedicated meadows officer to work with the youngsters and lead a community project with local musicians to produce a unique composition inspired by the grasslands.
Dubbed the Save our Magnificent Meadows programme, the charity hopes the scheme, which is funded by the National Lottery, will help restore and enhance about 15,000 acres of existing grassland across the UK.
Richard Humpidge, site manager at Loch of Strathbeg, described the plan as “exciting”.
“Meadows are fantastic places to be enjoyed by everyone and we are looking forward to spending the summer celebrating them and the beautiful wildflowers and wildlife they support,” he said.
“We hope to find someone who is as passionate as we are and has the necessary skills to inspire people of all ages and to organise our summer events including the Doric poetry competition and meadows celebration.”
At Loch of Strathbeg, RSPB Scotland are using specialist cutting equipment and grazing by konik ponies to restore 54 acres of fen meadow.
The impact of the ponies is being monitored using GPS tags, drones and botanical surveys, and students from Aberdeen University have been helping study how the ponies’ grazing is effecting plant diversity.
The reserve team is already noticing results with a record-breaking 204 spikes of lesser butterfly-orchid counted last year – a new record for the reserve and an increase of 73 on the 2014 count.