Hill & Mountain Research Centre

  • Postal addressShow on map

    SRUC Kirkton Farm

    FK208RU Crianlarich

    United Kingdom

Organisation profile

Organisation profile

The Hill & Mountain Research Centre, with its team of systems-scale researchers, is based at Kirkton and Auchtertyre Farms, a 2,200 ha estate near Crianlarich in the west Highlands of Scotland.

The site is set within the Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park and ranges from productive low ground fields to high altitude (over 1,000 metres above sea level) semi-natural habitats of high nature conservation value.

We are a Linking Environment & Farming (LEAF) Innovation Centre and a member of the Global Farm Platform initiative.

Our work aims to seek economically, environmentally and socially sustainable land management systems in the context of international, national and local land use policies.

In particular, our research and demonstration activities help highlight how precision livestock farming approaches can be used to address agricultural and environmental challenges.

The size and diversity of the farms mean that we can investigate a wide range of questions of relevance to current and future land management in the mountains.

Examples include:

  • We are assessing how different types of technology can help hill farmers and crofters improve livestock management and while also reducing costs, improving record keeping and saving time and labour
  • We have established a Long Range Wide Area Radio Network (LoraWAN) on the farms and are investigating what types of agricultural or environmental sensors can be used in remote, mountainous areas to improve decision making
  • We are using modern genetic selection approaches – such as Estimated Breeding Values (EBVs) – to show how best to enhance the productivity, profitability and environmental footprint of sheep flocks on mountain farms
  • We are assessing the Public Goods associated with different types of land management in the mountains and demonstrating how a greater focus on biodiversity enhancement can be integrated into mountain farming systems
  • We are involved in a range of international research projects and knowledge exchange activities as conditions in Scotland’s mountains are very similar to rangelands elsewhere across the globe


  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Forestry
  • Plant Science
  • Soil Science
  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology

UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. Our work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 6 - Clean Water and Sanitation
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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