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. Tollie Red Kites - RSPB

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    • 4 Wildlife Experience
    4 Wildlife Experience

    Dingwall Area

    Welcome to Tollie Red Kites

  2. RSPB Scotland Sumburgh Head

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    South Mainland

    Sumburgh Head is located at the southern tip of mainland Shetland with the majestic 100 metre cliffs offering a fantastic, unobstructed view of the seabird colonies and marine life surrounding it.

  3. Gradings

    Banff

    This five miles long walk stretches from the Whitehills Harbour to Banff Harbour and follows a lovely coastal path renowned for its seabirds and seals.

  4. Edinburgh Butterfly & Insect World

    Type

    Wildlife, Safari Parks & Zoos

    Gradings

    • 3 Visitor Attraction
    3 Visitor Attraction

    Dalkeith

    Visit the world's longest running indoor butterfly house with hundreds of free flying exotic butterflies in an indoor tropical rainforest. Daily animal handling and feeding sessions. Open all year, 7 days a week. Jungle Gift Shop. Free Parking.

  5. Orkney Uncovered

    Type

    Tour Guides

    Gradings

    Kirkwall

    'Orkney Uncovered' is a unique tour company offering private tours of Orkney's Wartime Defences, Stone Age Sites, Bespoke Jewellery, Wildlife and Coastal Scenery Walks.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. The View & Co

    Type

    Wildlife, Safari Parks & Zoos

    Gradings

    Appin

    Welcome to The View & Co overlooking Castle Stalker. Cafe & gift shop with panoramic views as well as our newly-opened wildlife hub where you can enjoy nest cameras and our highly-acclaimed Argyll wildlife film "In the View of Eagles"

  9. Loch Leven Nature Reserve

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Kinross

    Loch Leven National Nature Reserve features a large expanse of open water which is the ideal home for a variety of birds.

  10. Gradings

    Benbecula

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