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. Brodgar Nature Reserve - RSPB

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Harray

    This RSPB nature reserve beside the iconic Ring of Brodgar draws curlews, lapwings, redshanks, oystercatchers and various other birdlife.

  2. Solway Tours

    Type

    Historical Tour

    Gradings

    • Awaiting Grading
    Awaiting Grading

    Dumfries

    Welcome to Solway Tours- Guided Historic Tours specialising in South West Scotland and beyond. We offer full day, half day and multi day tours covering some amazing historic sites and fantastic Scottish scenery. Personalised, bespoke tours.

  3. Hobbister (Mainland) Nature Reserve

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Orphir

    Welcome to Hobbister (Mainland) Nature Reserve.

  4. Copinsay Nature Reserve - RSPB

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Orkney

    The RSPB nature reserve of Copinsay has a vast seabird colony that includes guillemots, kittiwakes, puffins and razorbills.

  5. Ben Lui

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    East Lochaber

    Ben Lui is a range of mountain peaks designated as a National Nature Reserve.

  6. Gradings

    Aviemore and the Cairngorms

    Wilderness Scotland is a 5 Star, award-winning adventure travel and ecotourism company specialising in walking holidays in the Highlands and Islands.

  7. Dalscone Farm Fun

    Type

    Wildlife, Safari Parks & Zoos

    Gradings

    • 4 Visitor Attraction
    4 Visitor Attraction

    Dumfries

    With its fantastic purpose-built indoor play area for children up to 11 plus its excellent cafe, Dalscone Farm Fun offers a fun-packed day for all the family.

  8. C-N-Do Borders

    Type

    Hiking Tour

    Gradings

    Central Scottish Borders

    The most extensive area of rolling hill country in the UK is right here and just waiting to be explored. Join a trek along the Southern Uplands Way, Scotland's 'coast to coast' route, stretching across the country to end at Cockburnspath.

  9. Galloway Wildlife Conservation Park

    Type

    Wildlife, Safari Parks & Zoos

    Gradings

    • 2 Visitor Attraction
    2 Visitor Attraction

    Kirkcudbright

    Galloway Wildlife Conservation Park has a fantastic collection of native and exotic animals amongst 27 acres of mixed woodland.

  10. Bute Forest

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Bute

    Welcome to Bute Forest, a unique area of forest on the Isle of Bute with walks for all ages.

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