A trail on the River Ayr Way through Ayr Gorge Woodlands, near Failford
Ayrshire & Arran is home to several reserves managed by the RSPB, Scottish Natural Heritage and other agencies.
Many of these have been granted protected status as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), Special Protection Areas (SPA) or Special Areas of Conservation (SAC) in recognition of the importance of many of the species found on them.
Ayr Gorge and Glenbuck Loch are both SSSI with the former an important site for kingfishers, spotted flycatchers, dippers, grey wagtails and great spotted woodpeckers while ospreys have been reported at the latter.
An SPA, Muirkirk and North Lowther Uplands is internationally important for its variety of breedingspecies such as short eared owls merlins, and peregrine falcons plus its wintering population of hen harriers.
Catrine Voes is East Ayrshire’s first local nature reserve and is an ideal spot to see otters, kingfishers, heron and dippers.