Our Estate

History

Map KirktonKirkton and Auchtertyre, and the valley of Strathfillan, have a rich history relating to local historical figures (St Fillan in particular).

There are numerous historical and archaeological points of interest within the farm boundaries. These include St Fillan's Priory Chapel, the Holy Pool and Priest's Well to name a few.

Sheep farming has traditionally been the main production in the area for centuries.

Land & Enterprises

Kirkton tourismThe farming enterprise utilises the following areas of land; 36.5 ha of ploughable land most of which is improved land; 151.5 ha of semi-improved land, much of it on the complex of moraine deposits that are typical of the area; and then 1,693 ha of hill land, virtually all of it unimproved.

The hill sheep enterprise has been the core farming on the farms for over 200 years. The sheep systems continue to be centred around Scottish Blackface ewes, with projects to further improve the breed (Hill Sheep Breeding Project) and to investigate alternative breeds.

There are 280 hectares of new native woodlands on the farms, much linked to the Hill Sheep and Native Woodland Project.

Tourism is very well catered for with Strathfillan Wigwams providing accommodation for up to 100 visitors throughout the year and with some 6 kilometres of 'way marked' footpaths, 25 kilometres of unmarked paths and self-guided walks.

Biodiversity

Globe Flower, a nationally rare plant, prospering within managed native woodlands at Kirkton

The farms have a wide range of habitats which have been managed in conjunction with low intensity farming for many generations.

Much of the farm is designated. The whole farm is within the Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park. The River Fillan is part of the River Tay Special Area of Conservation (designated for otter and pearl mussel).

102 species of bird have been seen on the farm, of which almost half are probable or definite breeders.

At the eastern end of the farm, the Cam Chreag ridge forms part of the Beinn Heasgarnich Special Area of Conservation and is designated for its vegetation with species-rich grasslands.

Golden ringed dragonfly, a species seen hunting within native woodlands at KirktonBiodiversity management takes place at a number of levels:

  • Research projects with high levels of biodiversity monitoring
  • Scottish Countryside Premium Scheme
  • Rural Stewards Scheme
  • Native Pinewood Scheme
  • Farm Woodlands Schemes

Prof Davy McCracken

Head of SRUC Hill & Mountain Research Centre (HMRC) / Professor of Agricultural Ecology

Address: Future Farming Systems, SRUC, JF Niven Building, Ayr KA6 5HW (HMRC, Kirkton, Crianlarich, Perthshire, FK20 8RU)

Telephone: 01292 525 299

Fax: 01292 525 333

E-mail: davy.mccracken@sruc.ac.uk

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