A NATURE agency has found that a range of Scottish wildlife are suffering the effects of "twin crises".

NatureScot reported figures showing that mammals, birds, butterflies, and moths are struggling to recover from the continuing effects of climate change and biodiversity loss.

More than 2800 species of wildlife are stabilising in numbers similar to those counted in the 1990s, which was a low point for many populations.

The health of a species is measured using abundance, referring to the number of individuals in a species, and occupancy, relating to the number of sites where the species is present.

Terrestrial bird species have remained proportionately stable since 2004, rising by over 13% since their 1994 record, thought to have been aided in part by birdfeeders.

Moth numbers have improved since 2015 but remain 27% lower than their count in 1994. Contrastingly, the abundancy of breeding seabirds has dropped by 41% between 1994 and 2019.

NatureScot stated that these results show nature in crisis, but pointed to the Scottish Government's Nature Restoration Fund as a positive.

The body said: "positive action to help protect and restore nature is under way thanks to crucial schemes such as the Scottish Government’s Nature Restoration Fund.

"Scotland’s largest-ever fund for nature supports vital work to tackle the biodiversity and climate crisis by putting Scotland’s species, woodlands, rivers and seas back on the road to recovery."

Nick Halfhide, NatureScot’s director of nature and climate change, said: “Scotland’s wildlife, on land and at sea, has a vital role in strengthening ecological health and helping us to build resilience in the face of the twin crises of biodiversity loss and climate change.

“These results show the effects of climate change are already being witnessed through changes to Scotland’s species in our lifetime.

“I would like to thank the army of volunteers who gather the data behind this work. We rely on them to collect, analyse and record Scotland’s wildlife in all weathers throughout the year.”

It comes after the Government drafted the Scottish Biodiversity Strategy (SBS), which lays out plans to halt biodiversity loss by 2030 and reverse the effects with large-scale restoration by 2045.

The SBS assembles multiple conservation operations, including Scotland’s Pollinator Strategy, Species on the Edge and the Plant Biodiversity Strategy for Scotland.

Biodiversity Minister Lorna Slater said: “Our new Scottish Biodiversity Strategy, published at the end of last year, sets out our high-level ambition to halt decline by 2030 and reverse biodiversity loss by 2045.

“This year, we will set out how we will achieve that vision and protect 30% of our land and seas for nature by 2030. We will be creating Highly Protected Marine Areas in at least 10% of our seas.

"And we will continue to deliver real change on the ground through our £65 million Nature Restoration Fund.”