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Wildlife week

Wildlife week

Gight Wood

On the steep, south-facing slopes of the Ythan River, Gight Wood is one of the least disturbed areas of lowland woodland remaining in Buchan with many native deciduous trees. ominating the landscape is the ruin of Gight Castle abandoned in the late 1700’s, once the home of Lord Byron’s mother.

Loch Ardinning

With a combination of loch and woodland, Loch Ardinning is an attractive haven for wintering and breeding wildfowl. Its moorland is home to curlew and black grouse and dense reedbeds are a magnet for invertebrates such as the azure damselfly. Grassy clearings with carpets of orchids attract butterflies in the wood.

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Red Moss of Balerno

Originally the bed of a shallow loch that existed in the Ice Age, Red Moss is largely composed of peat built up over thousands of years. Its domed top is covered by heather, cottongrass and varieties of sphagnum moss. Dragonflies and damselflies inhabit the small pools, as well as common frogs, toads and newts.

Cumbernauld Glen

In the heart of the busy town of Cumbernauld, Cumbernauld Glen, is a rich woodland that provides a valuable recreational space for local people. The ancient woodland is a haven for wildlife and the varied ground vegetation reflects the age of the site. Vast carpets of wild hyacinth flower from May to June and badgers are regularly seen foraging for food.

Cullaloe

Cullaloe was originally two reservoirs that provided drinking water for Burntisland. These were drained in 1990, lowering the water level by almost two metres.

Loch of the Lowes Visitor Centre and Wildlife Reserve

Loch of the Lowes is a large freshwater loch with a diverse aquatic flora, fringed by areas of fen, reedbeds and semi-natural woodland.

Montrose Basin Visitor Centre and Wildlife Reserve

Montrose Basin is an enclosed estuary of the South Esk and covers 750 hectares. A daily tidal cycle brings in a rich soup of nutrients that attracts over 50,000 migratory birds each year.

Pease Dean

Pease Dean reserve has two distinct arms: Pease Burn and Tower Burn. The area beside Pease Burn is an open valley with grassland, gorse, and alder. Upstream from where the two burns merge, the valleys become steeper and more wooded. Tower Burn has extensive areas of mixed woodland which supports attractive ground flora, such as primroses.

Make a beeline for the butterflies

LYING on the grass on a lazy, hazy summer's day wouldn't be the same without a butterfly floating past. But, as Scotland's climate becomes warmer, our native species are being joined by newcomers from across the Border, as different insects head north for the first time.

Carstramon Wood

How to get there:

Black and white and bred all over

WITH its distinctive bright beak and black and white "waiter's outfit", the puffin is a unique and unmistakable feature of the Scottish coastline.

Seaton Cliffs to Auchmithie

How to get there:

Go nuts over elusive pine martens

ITS nocturnal habit of scampering through the forest may make the pine marten one of Scotland's most elusive creatures, but its liking for peanut butter means you are still in with a chance of spotting one.

Doire Donn

How to get there:

Treat yourself to some seal spotting

IF YOU are sitting on the train as it meanders between Kirkcaldy and the Forth Bridge, then take a look out of the left-hand windows after you pass Kinghorn station and you may be in for a treat. There's a good chance you may catch sight of a group of seals, sunning themselves on the rocks as the train glides by.

Falls of Clyde waterfalls

How to get there:

On 24-hour peregrine falcon watch

PERCHED on a cliff ledge, high above the River Clyde, one of nature's most effective hunters sits protecting her chicks. Across on the other side of the gorge, a team of dedicated volunteers keeps watch over the persecuted birds, guarding them against poachers - and unintentional disturbance from walkers.

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