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. Kilmun Arboretum

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Dunoon

    Kilmun Aboretum is a woodland circuit which is part of Argyll Forest Park near Dunoon in Argyll.

  2. Orkney Archaeology Tours

    Type

    Tour Guides

    Gradings

    Birsay

    Orkney Archaeology Tours - for your perfect Orkney holiday. All-inclusive small group holidays & private tours led by archaeologists. Friendly, fun & informative tours with a maximum of 8 participants, based at a comfortable seafront hotel.

  3. Ben Wyvis National Nature Reserve

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Garve

    Ben Wyvis is a mountain designated as a National Nature Reserve.

  4. Odin Tours of Orkney

    Type

    Tour Operators

    Gradings

    Stromness

    Welcome to Odin Tours of Orkney

  5. Gradings

    Inverness

    Our fantastic Isle of Skye Day Tour explores all of the top attractions on the island, plus Loch Ness & Eilean Donan Castle too!

  6. Whitlaw Mosses

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Selkirk

    Enjoy wonderful scenery and a variety of wildlife to spot at Whitlaw Mosses in the Scottish Borders.

  7. Tentsmuir Point

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Cupar

    This large area of sand dunes and beach at the mouth of the Tay estuary forms an important roosting and feeding area for huge gatherings of seaducks, waders and wildfowl.

  8. Dumbarnie Links

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Elie

    Dumbarnie Links Reserve is an area of dune grassland in the centre of Largo Bay on the south coast of Fife.

  9. The Lodge, Forest Visitor Centre

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Aberfoyle

    The perfect place to start your forest adventure – lots to see and do and a café with one of the best views in Scotland

  10. Forsinard Nature Reserve - RSPB

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    • 4 Visitor Attraction
    4 Visitor Attraction

    Caithness and North Coast Sutherland area

    RSPB Nature Reserve at Forsinard in the Flow Country ~ wildlife trails and guided walks with birds, animals and flowers in these extensive peatlands.

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