16 January 2013
Nature campaigner Alex Hamilton has made a petition to the Scottish Parliament for the Scots Pine to be designated as Scotland's first national tree. ...
Nature campaigner Alex Hamilton has made a petition to the Scottish Parliament for the Scots Pine to be designated as Scotland's first national tree. MSPs have now been invited to being the process of designating the Scots Pine (Pinus sylvestris) as an official national symbol of Scotland.
Alex has been gathering the support of a number of nature organisations, including the RSPB, Scottish Wildlife Trust, John Muir Trust and Woodland Trust Scotland. Trees for Life, which protects the Caledonian Forest, which is home to the Scots Pine, have pledged their support, with director Alan Watson Featherstone saying: 'Over 70 countries around the world, from Canada to Childen and Denmark to South Africa have National Trees that provide important symbols for their national identities. At a time of increased support for Scottish independence, the declaration of the Scots Pine will further the development of a uniquely Scottish national identity.
'In a UK context, the Scots Pine's current natural range distinguishes Scotland from the rest of the country, as the only naturally-occurring pinewoods are in the Highlands. The oak is thought of as the National Tree of the UK, but that is a very English-centred perspective, as oaks predominated the forests of England.'
Alex Hamilton said in his petition to Parliament: 'The debate about the future of Scotland is and should be multi-dimensional and I believe that the vision of the future of Scotland should include a permanent commitment to our woodlands and natural heritage.
'A clear statement to this effect should be made and, as part of that, I wish to propose that the Scottish Government and Parliament adopts the Scots Pine as the National Tree of Scotland.'
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