Finding wildlife in Scotland

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Watch this video and see some of Scotland's remarkable wildlife, from timourous red squirrels to playful dolphins.
Great Scottish wildlife

See some of Scotland's remarkable wildlife, from timourous red squirrels to playful dolphins.

  • A golden eagle.
    A golden eagle
  • Close up shot of puffins on the Pentland Skerries
    Puffins on the Pentland Skerries
  • A close up of a red kite soaring high above Bellymack Hill Farm in Dumfries & Galloway
    A red kite soaring high above Bellymack Hill Farm in Dumfries & Galloway
  • Seals in Loch Flodabay, Isle of Harris
    Seals in Loch Flodabay, Isle of Harris

Whether on a mountain or hill, in a glen, forest or along the shoreline, there’s a wealth of wildlife experiences to be had in Scotland. With such an array of diverse animals, including some of the most rare and endangered species on the British Isles, Scotland promises unforgettable encounters with wildlife.

Scotland’s regions vary greatly and it’s this diversity that attracts many different species to make Scotland their home. Along thousands of miles of coastline, be sure to keep your eyes peeled for dolphins, seals and otters in quiet inlets, beaches and sea lochs.

Often spotted off the coast of Scotland’s many islands, orca and minke whales make an appearance in sight of the shore or if not, draw up close next to boats on wildlife cruises.  On just such a cruise, there are few natural sights more impressive than watching tens of thousands of seabirds congregating on sheer sea cliffs from below.

In dense forests, you may have to seek the helping hand of a knowledgeable, professional guide to find elusive mammals like pine martens. Birdlife is truly abundant across the rugged Scottish landscapes from wild fowl in wetland reserves to waders at the coast. In some cases, you'll have to crane your neck skywards to catch a glimpse of some of Scotland's majestic hunters; from ospreys to red kites and golden eagles to sea eagles.

With each new season brings a new incomparable sight, from red deer stags locking antlers in the annual autumnal rut or the arrival of pink-footed geese in the winter, migrating from the colder tundra landscapes of Greenland and Iceland.

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  1. Bird of Prey Trail

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    The Trossachs

    Covering several top wildlife watching areas, the Bird of Prey Trail in the Trossachs is a great destination for wildlife watching and outdoor pursuits.

  2. Brightwater Scotland

    Type

    Tour Operators

    Gradings

    Edinburgh - City Centre

    Brightwater Scotland presents a collection of quality holidays that celebrate the very best that Scotland has to offer. The wonderful islands that lie off our coast feature strongly, as well as garden holidays and special interest tours.

  3. Pease Dean

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Cockburnspath

    This nature reserve is one of the few areas where native woodland can be found. It comprises of two parts, Pease Burn and Tower Burn.

  4. Black Isle Wildlife And Country Park

    Type

    Wildlife, Safari Parks & Zoos

    Gradings

    • 2 Wildlife Experience
    2 Wildlife Experience

    North Kessock

    Meet the animals at the Black Isle Wildlife and Country Park.

  5. Trumland Nature Reserve

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Rousay

    Welcome to Trumland Nature Reserve.

  6. Gradings

    Bonnyrigg

    Welcome to Dalhousie Castle Falconry! Join us for an exciting day of flying beautiful birds or prey to your gloved hand, or why not test your skills with some archery with recurve bows? Packages available for adults and children.

  7. Balranald - RSPB

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Outer Hebrides

    Balranald RSPB is a beautiful Hebridean reserve which has sandy beaches, rocky foreshore, marshes and sand dunes.

  8. Scottish Terrier Tours

    Type

    Chauffeur Tour

    Gradings

    Wemyss Bay

    Welcome to scottish terrier tours

  9. Ness Battery

    Type

    Tour Guides

    Gradings

    Stromness

    Now open for guided tours, Ness Battery is a remarkable relic of Orkney's wartime past. The tour includes the the mess hall, featuring the famous painted mural. This is a brand new attraction for Orkney, and one not to be missed!

  10. Keen Of Hamar

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Shetland

    Resembling a lunar landscape, explore this remarkable nature reserve on Unst, home to some of the rarest plants in Britain.

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