Birdwatching in Ayrshire & Arran

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  • Gannets
  • Pheasant at Culzean Castle and Country Park, Ayrshire
    Pheasant at Culzean Castle and Country Park, Ayrshire

With its varied mix of landscapes and habitats, Ayrshire & Arran has lots to offer birdwatchers, be they avid 'twitchers' or just those who like spotting wildlife while out exploring the countryside.


The two main offshore islands, Arran and Ailsa Craig, have a fantastic range of species to spot. Take one of the popular boat trips from Girvan to Ailsa Craig to experience the amazing sight and sounds of over 70,000 seabirds as they crowd the steep rockface during the summer breeding season.

Meanwhile, along Arran's coastline, you'll  find heron, mallards, widgoen, golden eye and teal at various points throughout the year. Further inland, raptors such as buzzards, peregrines, kestrels, hen harriers and sparrowhawks can regularly be seen hunting from the air.

Significant species

On the mainland itself, you'll find several reserves which provide excellent facilities and opportunities for some serious birdwatcher. Some of the more interesting species found here include kingfishers, spotted flycatchers, and great spotted woodpeckers while there are internatiionally significant populations of hen harriers, peregrines, short-eared owls, merlins and golden plovers.

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  1. Gradings

    Ayrshire & Arran

    Explore the West Coast of Scotland on our Unique Scottish Cruises. Visiting the inlets and islands of Wild Argyll, Arran and the Outer Hebrides with spectacular cruise itineraries ranging from 3 to 13 nights.

  2. Knockshinnoch Lagoons


    Nature Centres & Reserves


    New Cumnock

    Transformed from an industrial site, Knockshinnoch Lagoons is now an ideal spot for nature lovers.

  3. LA Marine


    Boat Tour



    LA Marine provides high end, life experience trips on-board a bespoke Sealine T50, flybridge motor-yacht, Louise of Granton. The boat cruises out of the beautiful and scenic Largs marina.


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