Glenogil Estate in the Angus Glens has been lauded for its biodiversity by visiting German experts.
Dr Daniel Hoffman of Game Conservancy Deutschland praised the grouse moor for its land management, which has led to 98 different bird species being found.
Glenogil Estate, between Glen Clova and Glen Lethnot, has been visited for the past three years by German scientists examining biodiversity in Scotland.
Dr Hoffman’s team found an increase of 35 bird species from their first visit in 2015 and are crediting heather burning and predator control as the main drivers in the abundance of wildlife.
Among the birds found by Dr Hoffman and his team were red-listed species including curlew, lapwing, black grouse and merlin.
An abundance of non-bird species were also found, such as mountain hares and lizards.
Dr Hoffman said: “This is the third year that we have worked here at Glenogil and, so far, we’ve found 98 different bird species in this whole area.
“We wanted to show other estates, other countries in Britain and in the whole of Europe that you can have this biodiversity only when you have the ecologically correct form of management in an area.
“When I was here for the first time it was amazing to see the biodiversity.
“We read papers and articles saying that species such as the curlew, a flagship species in nature conservation, are endangered in Britain but you can’t believe that when you are here.
“We find golden plovers with a high population density and even on these few hectares here on Glenogil, we find almost double the number of breeding pairs that you find in the whole of Germany.
“They breed here because the landscape is managed as it is. At Glenogil you have habitat management and predation control so the survival rate of our target species is so good.
“This create a kind of donator population and other areas they will have benefit from the work that is done here.
“If you have an area and say, ‘Oh, okay, we do nothing here’, then you will lose biodiversity, and that’s what we want to show.
“We want to show that you have to do habitat management and predation control to have a high level of biodiversity from different species, all different species.”
Danny Lawson, head gamekeeper at Glenogil Estate, said land management, especially for gamekeepers on moorland estates, has never been under closer scrutiny.
He said: “We’ve been delighted to welcome Dr Hoffman and his team to demonstrate the management techniques which work so well at Glenogil and can hopefully be replicated to the benefit of wildlife across Scotland, the UK and Europe.”