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. Ben Lawers National Nature Reserve

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Killin

    Famed for its botanical riches, the rare mixture of lime-rich underlying rocks, high altitude and climate mean Ben Lawers National Nature Reserve is home to a wide array of plants.

  2. Gradings

    • 3 Wildlife Experience
    3 Wildlife Experience

    Lanark

    Welcome to Falls of Clyde Visitor Centre & Wildlife Reserve

  3. WWT Caerlaverock, The Granary Coffee Shop

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Glencaple

    Welcome to WWT Caerlaverock, The Granary Coffee Shop

  4. Gradings

    • 3 Visitor Attraction
    3 Visitor Attraction

    Greenock

    Do one of the top 50 walks in Scotland - the circular 11km walk is reasonably level, with panoramic views of the Clyde. Start at Drumfrochar Station and then stop half way at the Visitor Centre for coffee and see the exhibition.

  5. Ness Battery

    Type

    Tour Guides

    Gradings

    Stromness

    Now open for guided tours, Ness Battery is a remarkable relic of Orkney's wartime past. The tour includes the the mess hall, featuring the famous painted mural. This is a brand new attraction for Orkney, and one not to be missed!

  6. Extra Mile Coaches

    Type

    Coach Tour

    Gradings

    Clackmannan

    Passionate about travel in Scotland, Extra Mile Coaches will give you a holiday you will never forget. We cater for group bookings of between 9 and 15 people. Contact us for a quotation based on your itinerary or for ideas of where to visit

  7. Geopark Shetland

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    Shetland

    From exploring an extinct volcano to walking across shifting sands, experience the variety of geology in Geopark Shetland.

  8. Explore Orkney

    Type

    Tour Guides

    Gradings

    Finstown

    Enjoy the wonders of holidays in Orkney with these all-inclusive structured day trips. Uncover fascinating tombs, learn about the Vikings and explore Neolithic sites.

  9. Ridgway Adventure

    Type

    Hiking Tour

    Gradings

    Rhiconich

    A timeless and truly wild natural environment where mountains rise majestically from intricate coves and bays of sheltered sea lochs. Join us here, a family home and Adventure School for over 40 years. Holidays and courses for many ages.

  10. RSPB Scotland Loch of Kinnordy nature reserve

    Type

    Nature Centres & Reserves

    Gradings

    • 3 Visitor Attraction
    3 Visitor Attraction

    Kirriemuir

    This shallow loch is situated in a natural basin surrounded by farmland and attracts all types of wildlife.

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