Felling work begins in the Bennachie forests on Monday (September 10), and as a precaution, Forestry Commission Scotland is advising visitors to observe all signage in the forests.
Some areas of the forest will not be accessible but diversions will be in place so people can still enjoy walks.
Emily Holmes for Forestry Commission Scotland’s team in the Moray and Aberdeenshire said: “We’ll be doing some thinning to improve the forest – and to improve the range and health of habitats that will benefit wildlife – but because it’s a working forest that sustainably produces timber and fuel, we’ll also be doing some clear felling.
“There will be some heavy machinery working in the forest so it’s important that everyone observes the instructions on any signage that we put up. The guy’s working the machinery will be concentrating on the job and they won’t be able to see or hear people – or dogs! - that wander into the working area. And it’s also quite scary how little warning you get when a tree is coming down!
“People have been enjoying the amazing, wildlife-rich forests of Bennachie for many years and the work that we will be doing will help to ensure that the forest stays fit and healthy and a great place to visit for many years to come.”
Emily added that from Monday, October 1 to Friday, October 12, the Bennachie Centre car park and visitor centre will be closed to allow felling work in the vicinity to be carried out safely, and apologised in advance for any inconvenience caused.
If you would like to take part in a forest visit to see some of the machines at work and learn a bit more about forestry, you can join Forestry Commission Scotland staff on Tuesday and Wednesday, October 23 or 24 at 10am for a forest tour. Please ensure you wear suitable clothing and footwear. The event is free, but places are limited so please do call the local office on (01466) 794161 or email moray&Aberdeenshire@forestry.gsi.gov.uk to book your place.