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Carsegowan Moss - Peatland Alliance Project

Carsegowan Moss
One of the best surviving lowland raised bogs in Dumfries and Galloway

Carsegowan Moss is a 52ha raised bog, fringed with pine and birch woodland. Located in the far south west of Scotland, this reserve is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and a Special Area for Conservation (SAC). It can be found on the Wigtown peninsular, along the A714, and is approximately 6.5km south-east of Newton Stewart and 3.5km north-west of Wigtown.

Value
This bog was originally part of a larger system of peatlands found on the upper reaches of the Wigtown Bay estuary, much of which has been lost to agriculture or forestry. The domed surface of the bog (the acrotelm) is typically carpeted in Sphagnum and also supports various heathers and sedges, including cotton-grasses. Other species include sundew, cranberry and bog rosemary; red squirrel and hen harrier also visit the reserve.

Potential
Over the past 14 years, encroaching woodland has been significantly cleared and this clearance needs to continue in order to reduce the drying influence on the peat. Areas of damaged peat along the sides of the main ditches support dense carpets of purple moor grass which inhibits the re-establishment of sphagnum mosses and other peat forming vegetation. Further damming and vegetation management is needed to help the recovery of the bog in these areas. In the longer term, grazing will be required to supress tree regeneration and heather growth - this will require additional fencing to effectively control stock.