- British Wildlife
- The Magazine
Great Bird Watching Opportunities in Scotland
Birdwatching is a gentle pastime which, once you have caught the bug, can be very interesting and rewarding. If you want to see some really unusual and rare birds, you have to be prepared to go out a bit further afield to see them.
Staying in the Scottish Highlands, there is a lot of bird life in the area and a short run in the car will give you access to some of the most beautiful wild countryside in Europe. On some of these trips you can expect to see golden eagles, grouse, osprey, common buzzards, peregrines and hen harriers and even a capercaillie on occasions. It is exhilarating to come across these magnificent creatures and we must do all we can to ensure that they remain safe and protected from danger of extinction.
There are many bird watching areas in Scotland. One of them is near Inverness, where red kites are bred. They frequent the Black Isle and can often be seen flying overhead. Many seabirds can be seen there too. If you travel along a few miles to Cromarty, you will be able to go on a boat trip to see many of the sea birds like shags, cormorants, puffins, black guillemots, kittiwakes, gannets, fulmars and dozens of other bird species nesting on the North Sutor cliffs.
Another magnificent place to visit is the Isle of Staffa, which is a haven for puffins, which nest there in the breeding season.
All you need for a bird watching expedition is a good pair of binoculars that won’t let you down. You will also need a snack and a drink to keep you going as birds won’t come out when it’s convenient for you! A good bird book to recognise the species of bird you may come across and some sturdy shoes or walking boots to cope with any terrain is essential. You will need to bring waterproof clothing in case the weather changes.