Hundreds of trees flattened by storms will be used to save threatened salmon.
Around 16 million trees were damaged in woodlands across Scotland during the deadly Storm Arwen in late 2021.
More than 300 from a wooded site near Banchory in Aberdeenshire will now be transported to a site near Braemar, where they’ll be repurposed to give shelter to dwindling salmon populations in the River Dee.
The project is the latest in a string of concerted efforts to boost numbers in the Dee, which is synonymous with salmon fishing.
Once the trees are anchored in position, the flows around them produce the ideal spawning habitat for salmon and trout.
They also create shelter against floods and predators and thermal refuges for both young fish and adults.
Meanwhile, their root-plates create an environment for the invertebrates which feed the young salmon, birds and other wildlife.
River Dee director Dr Lorraine Hawkins said: “Trees would have naturally fallen into the water from the once-rich woodland on the river’s banks.
“With the historic loss of woodland, we have to give nature back the tools to help itself.”
Storm Arwen caused severe damage across the UK in November 2021, prompting a rare ‘red warning’ from the Met Office.
One man died when his pick-up truck was hit by a falling tree in Aberdeenshire, while tens of thousands of homes were left without power.
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