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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.

  • Looking out over a flock of birds at the Caerlaverock National Nature Reserve
    A flock of birds at the Caerlaverock National Nature Reserve
  • A red deer with antlers stands among the reddish brown bracken
    A red deer poses among the bracken
  • The beach and dunes of St Cyrus National Nature Reserve
    St Cyrus National Nature Reserve

As each new season passes, the wildlife in Scotland remains as vibrant and colourful as the last. Nature reserves and hides are some of the best places to immerse yourself in the natural world and get close to some of Scotland's most intricate and endangered species.

From the peace and quiet of a hide, use a pair of binoculars to see magnificent birds of prey, such as a nesting pair of ospreys with their young in their Highland retreat. In some cases, you'll be so close, you'll need only your eyes to take it the awesome sight of passing red deer or elusive otters.

Each reserve is different, with some bathed in tranquility whilst others are a buzz of activity. The seabird colonies of Orkney and Shetland, for instance, are a hubbub of noise and movement as puffins, fulmars, guillemots, Arctic skuas and more breed in cliff faces and feed their young. Wetlands across the country attract all kinds of wildfowl and waders, including migrating pink footed geese who arrive in the autumn.

It's Scotland's diverse landscapes that attracts this variety of wildlife with habitats set amongst rugged mountains and wild moorland, ancient pine forests and along the thousands of miles of coastline.

Browse the listings to plan a visit to the many nature reserves and hides around the country.

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164 results, currently showing 1 to 10
  1. Kirkconnell Flow

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Dumfries and Surrounding Area

    This National Nature Reserve is a classic example of an ancient raised bog and is one of the most threatened habitats in the world.

  2. Muir Of Dinnet National Nature Reserve

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    • 4 Visitor Attraction
    4 Visitor Attraction

    Ballater

    Situated on low-lying ground, Muir of Dinnet National Nature Reserve (NNR) consists of extensive Birchwood, wetlands and heather moor.

  3. 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.

  4. Cumbernauld Glen

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Cumbernauld

    This reserve’s ancient woodland is a haven for wildlife and, in early summer, there are vast carpets of bluebells.

  5. Cream O' Galloway

    Type

    Children's Attractions

    Gradings

    • 4 Visitor Attraction
    4 Visitor Attraction

    Gatehouse-of-Fleet

    Cream o' Galloway is a deliciously good fun place to visit with its adventure playground, indoor visitor centre & play areas, daily events, exciting slides, rides and pedal kart track, and its miles of beautiful walks and nature trails.

  6. RSPB Scotland Marwick Head nature reserve

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Dounby

    RSPB Scotland Marwick Head nature reserve is home to the largest cliff nesting seabird colony on the Orkney mainland.

  7. Fleecefaulds Meadow

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Cupar

    Fleecefaulds Meadow Wildlife Reserve is an area of flower-rich grassland, rich fen and lowland scrub near the village of Ceres.

  8. Kirroughtree Visitor Centre, Café & Bike Shop

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Newton Stewart

    Kirroughtree has a great restaraunt and bike shop so you can fill up on great food before hiring a bike or using your own on the world renowned 7stanes Kirroughtree trails. Fantastic forest walks and amazing wildlife there to be discovered.

  9. Gight Wood

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Pitmedden

    Gight Wood lies on the steep, south facing slopes of the Ythan valley, forming the easternmost part of a series of woodlands and river grasslands.

  10. Queen's View Visitor Centre, Café & Shop

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Pitlochry

    The Queen’s View in Highland Perthshire overlooks Loch Tummel and is said to have been named after Queen Victoria, following her visit to the area in 1866.

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