Scotland is known around the world for its dramatic scenery, friendly people and single malt whisky. It is an ancient land full of beautiful wild places. Scotland’s mountains, moors and offshore islands offer naturalists the opportunity to experience an excellent array of British wildlife.
On this Venture, we will travel by mini-bus through the Scottish Highlands after taking in the cultural delights of Edinburgh. Making our base in Aviemore, close to the old Caledonian forests of the Cairngorms, we will explore various sites within this stunning area. Several of our target species on this tour are found within the park and include pine martin, the gorgeous crested tit, capercaillie, and the endemic Scottish crossbill.
We will also explore many of the Scottish Islands as we travel from Inverness (via the Outer Hebrides) to Fort William, with nights on the islands of Skye, and North and South Uist. The ferry journey across the waters of the Minch is particularly beautiful and offers the opportunity to see seabirds, such as arctic tern, great skua and Manx shearwater, as well as cetaceans like minke whale and short-beaked common dolphin. Several of the Islands hold good populations of the very difficult to see corncrake and the unique coastal habitat known as the Machair is home to a great diversity of wild flowers and breeding shorebirds such as dunlin and redshank. Join us for this once in a lifetime experience of all the wild bounty Scotland has to offer.
Some of the Birds We Hope to See
Red-throated & Black-throated Divers, Slavonian (Horned) Grebe, Manx and Sooty Shearwaters, European Storm-Petrel Arctic, Sandwich & Little Terns, Northern Gannet, Shag, Grey Heron, Tufted Duck, Common Eider, Common Goldeneye, Hen Harrier, Merlin, Peregrine Falcon, Common Buzzard, White-tailed and Golden Eagles, Red & Black Grouse, Capercaillie, Corncrake, European Golden Plover, Eurasian Curlew, Common Redshank, Common Greenshank, Dunlin, Common Guillemot (Murre), Black Guillemot, Razorbill, Atlantic Puffin, Skylark, Meadow & Rock pipits, White-throated Dipper, Common Stonechat, Whinchat , Northern Wheatear, Goldcrest, Crested Tit and many more.
Some of the Mammals We Hope to See
Pine Marten, Roe and Red Deer, Minke Whale, Short-beaked Common Dolphin, Harbour Porpoise, Bottle-nosed Dolphin, Common and Grey Seals, and European otter.
Some of the Wildflowers We Hope to See
Silver weed, bog-myrtle, devil’s bit scabious, oysterplant, selfheal, yellow rattle, bog asphodel, northern marsh orchid, sea holly, purple loosestrife, ragged robin, thrift, sea campion, common cotton grass, ling heather,bell heather, cross-leaved heath heather, field gentian, spear thistle, common butterwort, wild thyme, harebell, heath spotted orchid, crane’s bill bird’s-foot trefoil and many more.
Some of the Dragonflies We Hope to See
Blue-tailed, Large Red and Common Blue Damselflies, Southern and Azure Hawkers, Four-spotted Chaser, and Golden-ringed Dragonfly