Birdwatching in Ayrshire & Arran

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  • Gannets
    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.

Seabirds

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. River Ayr Way

    Type

    Wildlife & Nature walks

    Gradings

    Muirkirk

    Scotland's first source-to-sea path network is now open! This much-anticipated route has been under construction for two years as part of East Ayrshire Council's Coalfield Access Project which is a £2.

  2. Knockshinnoch Lagoons

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    New Cumnock

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

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