Mark Gurney
British Wildlife 28.2 December 2016

The botanical importance of the Insh Marshes, a floodplain swamp in northern Scotland

The Insh Marshers on Speyside, Easterness, form one of the largest and most northerly floodplain fens in Britain. The general wildlife interest of the marshes was summarised some years ago in British Wildlife (Gibbons 1993). The present author concentrates on the vascular plants of the site, providing more detail on these and an update on their status. 

The floodplain fens of Insh Marshes are 15km long and lie within the broad valley floor of the River Spey between Kingussie, at the south-west end, and Kincraig, to the north-east, where the river flows into Loch Insh. Despite piecemeal attempts at drainage in the past, about 3km2 of wet fen and swamp still remain (Gilvear 1994).

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