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Biodiversity and conservation information
Home   Planning and building standards   Conservation - natural environment   Biodiversity and conservation information

Biodiversity and conservation

Biodiversity is a shortened term for ‘biological diversity’, meaning the richness and variety of all life on Earth.

We are all stakeholders in our shared local and global biodiversity.

The North Ayrshire Local Biodiversity Action Plan 2019-31 (PDF, 3.42mb) details the action that the North Ayrshire Biodiversity Partnership intends to achieve alongside those who live in, work in and visit North Ayrshire, including:

  • residents of all ages
  • community groups
  • local wildlife recorders
  • non-governmental organisations
  • public bodies
  • landowners and land managers
  • businesses

Whether your interest in biodiversity is personal or professional, this Action Plan will help you to:

  • learn more about biodiversity
  • experience biodiversity for yourself
  • take positive action to conserve and enhance biodiversity in North Ayrshire

If you are unfamiliar with any terms, please use the Quick Guide to Terms used in this document and List of Abbreviations sections which can be found towards the end of the Action Plan.

If you would like to find out more about biodiversity or get involved in work within this Action Plan, please email or telephone 01294 310000.

Further information relating to our Action Plan is available in the following documents:

North Ayrshire Council has a dedicated Ranger Service working with communities and partner organisations to utilise, promote and enhance green spaces and designated land throughout North Ayrshire. To find out more about our service or to contact us please visit our Facebook page 

Biodiversity is life

North Ayrshire Local Biodiversity Action Plan 2019-2031 aligns with and contributes to:

Statutory biodiversity duty 

The Nature Conservation (Scotland) Act 2004 places a statutory biodiversity duty on all public bodies and office-holders to further the conservation of biodiversity and have regard to the Scottish Biodiversity Strategy and the Convention on Biological Diversity.

Section 1 of the Act states:

“It is the duty of every public body and office-holder, in exercising any functions, to further the conservation of biodiversity so far as is consistent with the proper exercise of those functions.”

In carrying out their functions, Local Authorities must therefore ensure that actions which benefit biodiversity are incorporated into all areas of service delivery wherever possible.

By making sure that biodiversity conservation is considered alongside economic and social factors, Local Authorities can demonstrate that they are fulfilling their statutory biodiversity duty.

Information on how Local Authorities and other public bodies can incorporate biodiversity conservation and enhancement into their work can be found in the document Best Value and Biodiversity in Scotland – A Handbook of Good Practice for Public Bodies.

The Wildlife and Natural Environment (Scotland) Act 2011 (WANE Act) requires that public bodies report on their compliance with the biodiversity duty.

North Ayrshire Council’s most recent Biodiversity Duty Report 2018 - 2020 (PDF, 2.6mb) has been based on the NatureScot Biodiversity Duty Report Level One Template. NatureScot also has Guidance Notes available to explain Biodiversity duty. 

North Ayrshire Biodiversity Partnership 

Steering group 

Wider partnership and projects 

Further Ayrshire biodiversity links

Further national biodiversity links