Winter Talks

TALKS 2022/23

Please watch this space for talks which will take place from October 2022.


Tuesday 5 October 2021


Neil is Energy and Water Specialist at Scottish Enterprise and will be speaking in a personal capacity.

He is a geographer, author and energy specialist and will present on the links between climate change and nature. In his book, Carbon Choices, he identifies the 10 building blocks that society needs to adopt to tackle the climate crises - such as sensible economics, taking a long term approach, innovation, education and the role of community. But most of these also apply to our nature and biodiversity crises. Neil will explore the links between carbon and nature and question our love affair with the typical highland scenery. Is rewilding the answer? Neil's talk will be illustrated with his photographs from Scotland and overseas.

Tuesday 2 November 2021 at 7.30 p.m.

Jack Wooton, Freshwater Ecologist and Eel Specialist, Forth Rivers Trust


Jack has worked in Freshwater Conservation for a number of years now with a particular focus on rare and unloved species. He founded the Forgotten Fish Project which is part of the Forth Rivers Trust that highlights the species which get little attention and even less conservation focus. As well as freshwater, Jack has worked with orangutan and other primates, but is always drawn back to water!

Please note that it is imperative to book in advance. Also please note that ideally you should start to link into the meeting in good time, and no later than10 - 15 minutes before the start, as the joining link will be locked once the meeting has started.

Tuesday 7 December 2021 at 7.30 p.m.

Chris Cathrine, Director of Caledonian Conservation Ltd and Vice Chair of SWT Stirling & Clacks


Chris has gained considerable experience of ecology and where it fits into legislation, policy, and planning, gained during 14 years as an ecological consultant, and four years working for NGOs and local authority. He has also authored three papers on devolved environmental legislation, written guidance, informed policy, and worked on all stages of developments. With this background he has engaged with planning from a range of angles, which has given him a broader understanding of the systems in Scotland, and how best to engage with them to benefit biodiversity.

Tuesday 1 February 2022 at 7.30 p.m

Stuart Bence, one of our young Committee members, on BRINGING WILDLIFE TO YOUR GARDEN.

Stuart is a young natural historian whose enthusiasm for the natural world is infectious. He is currently in the final stage of his PhD from the Scottish School of Forestry at the University of the Highlands and Islands, having previously gained a BSc (Hons) in Conservation Biology and Management at Stirling and an MSc in Ecology from Aberdeen. Since 2020 Stuart has been on a Placement with NatureScot. He is one of the keenest young naturalists you will come across and his talk will show you how he successfully created a garden for wildlife. As an undergraduate he played a leading role in Stirling University’s Nature Society; he is one of our committee members and co-chair of Butterfly Conservation (Glasgow & Southwest Branch). He has created a garden designed to attract wildlife and hopes to encourage you to follow in his footsteps.

Tuesday 1 March 2022 at 7.30 p.m.

Dr Katty Baird on HIBERNATING HERALDS: Underground adventure in search of Moths.

Katty is a volunteer for East Scotland Branch of Butterfly Conservation. She has been recording moths for about ten years, and gets most enjoyment from trying to get to know the ecology and behaviour of individual species in more detail. Recent subjects have included Old Lady, Mallow and Pimpinel Pug. The Hibernating Herald project was started at the end of 2016 in an effort to find out more about the distribution of Herald and Tissue moths in Scotland and is a citizen science project offering a fun diversion for moth recorders during the traditionally quieter winter months.

Please note that some past talks can be viewed by going to:

We usually (in CoViD-19 free times) meet in Stirling Indoor Bowling Club (SIBC) in Forth Street, Stirling, FK8 1UE. This is a large grey building with a big car park behind and to the side. It is the next building along from the Ten Pin Bowling Centre. The entrance is the same as for The Stirling Wood Centre, the Indoor Bowling Club being on your left. Talks usually start at 7.30pm with suggested donations of £3 (students/unemployed £1) including tea and biscuits. Our talks are open to all, whether or not you are a member of the SWT or from our area. They are normally held on the first Tuesday of the month at 7.30 p.m.

Currently we deliver our talks via Zoom online meetings.


Tuesday 6 October 2020

Amphibians and Reptiles in Scotland

Chris Cathrine, Caledonian Conservation Ltd

Tuesday 3 November 2020

East Coast Sea Eagle Reintroduction

Owen Selly, RSPB's Conservation Officer - Loch Lomond, The Trossachs and Tayside

Tuesday 1 December 2020

Nature Friendly Farming at Argaty Red Kites

Tom Bowser, Head Ranger at Argaty Red Kites

Tuesday 5 January 2021

From Magic to Medicine: Scottish Vernacular Plant Medicine

Gregory Kenicer, Botanist at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh

Tuesday 2 February 2021

The Impact of Gardening on Wild Plant Populations

Roy Sexton, Past Chair, SWT Stirling and Clacks

7.30 p.m. on Tuesday 2 March

Bogs for Bugs - An introduction to bogs and the specialist invertebrates you find on them together with the conservation and restoration of peatlands around Falkirk.

Melissa Shaw, a member of our Committee and the Peatland Conservation Officer at Buglife - The Invertebrate Conservation Trust


Tuesday 1 October 2019

The Survival and Dispersal Strategies of Moths and Butterflies

Jo Davis, Butterfly Conservation, West Scotland Group

Tuesday 5 November 2019

Golf Course Ecology (a brief look at environmental management)

James Hutchinson, BIGGA (The Greenkeepers' Association)

followed by:

Sustainability in Golf (Our changing climate, resource efficiency and community engagement)

Carolyn Hedley, Scottish Golf

Tuesday 3 December 2019

Ancient Woodlands

Richard Thompson, Forestry and Land Scotland

NB: Questions, submitted in advance via our Contact Us page, would be welcome.

Tuesday 7 January 2020

The Work of the Scottish Raptor Group

Duncan Orr-Ewing, Head of Species and Land Management, RSPB, Scotland

Tuesday 4th February 2020

Our Catchment-wide Work on the Allan Water

Sandra Stewart, Project Officer for The Forth Rivers Trust Catchment-wide Work on the Allan Water

Tuesday 3 March 2020

The Secret Lives of Bats

Liz Ferrell, Scottish Officer, Bat Conservation Trust

Photograph: (C) Daniel Hargreaves/


Tuesday 2nd October 2018

What do birds get up to? Technology, tags and trackers

Ben Darvill (BTO)

Tuesday 6th November 2018

Tag'n'Track: All you need to know about Lesser Black-backed Gulls

Hayley Douglas (Tag 'n' track development officer)

Tuesday 4th December

The Flora of Central Scotland - 50 years of Change

Roy Sexton (SWT Stirling and Clacks) Combined meeting with Botanical Society of Scotland

Tuesday 8th January 2019

Perspectives in Marine Conservation

Linda Rosborough (Chair of SWT)

Tuesday 5th February 2019

Blood, Sweat and Deers

Lucy Webster (Wildlife DNA Unit at Science and Advice for Scottish Agriculture)

Tuesday 5th March 2019

Sir John Murray and Sir Wyville Thomson: Sons of the Forth and Leaders of the Great Challenger Expedition

Roy Sexton, Chairman, SWT Stirling and Clacks

Tuesday 2nd April 2019

Short AGM at 7.15 p.m. followed at 7.30

Saving Scotland's Red Squirrels

Mary-Anne Collis (Conservation Officer, SWT)