Leonardo DiCaprio invited to huge Scots rewilding estate near Loch Ness

Leonardo DiCaprio attended the Cop26 summit in Glasgow -Credit:Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire
Leonardo DiCaprio attended the Cop26 summit in Glasgow -Credit:Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

Leonardo DiCaprio has been invited to visit Scotland's largest rewilding estate near Loch Ness after backing a national nature campaign last week.

The charity Trees for Life said it extended an open invitation to the Hollywood star to see its Dundreggan estate in the Highlands.

It comes as the Scottish Rewilding Alliance - which wants to turn Scotland into the first "Rewilding Nation" - is seeking to raise £200,000 in just one week.

The alliance, a coalition of more than 20 organisations, is calling on the Scottish Government to commit to nature recovery across 30 per cent of the country to benefit nature, climate and people.

And in a message of support posted to his 62 million followers on Instagram last week, which has now been liked by almost 100,000 people, DiCaprio said: “With this campaign, Scotland could be a world leader in rewilding its landscapes, ensuring clean air and water, storing carbon, reducing flooding, restoring wildlife, and improving the lives of locals.”

The Killers of the Flower Moon and Titanic star, 49, added: “About 6000 years ago, most of southern Scotland was covered by broadleaf woodland, interspersed with patches of rich scrub, heath and bog.

“In stark contrast, the landscape today is nature-depleted hills, with highly degraded sheep-grazed areas (so-called ‘sheep-wrecked landscapes) and blocks of non-native spruce plantations.”

Trees For Life, Dundreggan.
Trees For Life, Dundreggan. -Credit:Paul Campbell

The actor has also become a high-profile environmentalist, attending the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow in 2021.

Rewilding Britain aims to raise £200,000 for the Rewilding Nation campaign as part of this year’s Big Give Green Match Fund, which runs from April 18-25. All donations will be matched by Big Give.

Activists say rewilding 30 per cent of Scotland can be achieved by restoring habitats including peatlands, native woodlands, wetlands, rivers and seas, with no loss of productive farmland.

Kevin Cumming, steering group member of the Scottish Rewilding Alliance, said: “We’re urging people from all walks of life to support the Rewilding Nation campaign.

“This is about creating a groundswell of hope for a greener, fairer Scotland in which communities and nature thrive together.

“Rewilding is about tackling the nature and climate emergencies, while offering a cascade of benefits for people – including better health, new jobs, food security, and healthy rivers and seas.”

Alliance member Trees for Life has invited DiCaprio to visit the charity’s Dundreggan Rewilding Centre near Loch Ness in the Highlands.

The centre celebrates rewilding and Gaelic culture, and offers a gateway for visitors to explore Trees for Life’s Dundreggan estate, part of Affric Highlands, the UK’s biggest rewilding landscape.

A Rewilding Nation Charter, which calls on the Scottish Government to declare Scotland a rewilding nation, has already been signed by thousands of people.

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