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Ghosts of the forest - black grouse watch

Sundays between Sunday March 20 2016–Sunday May 8

  • Binoculars and telescopes for hire
  • Video link
  • Staff on hand to help
  • Refreshments available
  • Parking
  • Toilets
Male black grouse jousting on lek site

Image: Niall Benvie

You'll recognise us easily – we'll be the ones strutting around with our bums in the air.

You might think we're dancing, but our bobbing white tails and bubbling call are part of the serious business of mating.

Set against the stunning moorland backdrop of Coed Llandegla Forest, groups of us black grouse males meet at our display ground – or lek – to show off to the females, so the stakes are high.

Not many people get a chance to see us in action: but you can.

Join a guided walk through the forest to a purpose-built hide where we'll perform approximately 400m away from you.

To see us, there are only 15 spaces per walk so you'll need to book a place on a walk. Tickets cost £10.

Once you've booked you will receive a black grouse pack with all the information you will require.

Visitor comments

Fantastic, haven't had a good day like this for ages.

Anonymous

This really was excellent. Reminds me why I'm an RSPB member. The staff and volunteers were really superb and of course the birds are brilliant.

Anonymous

Excellent hospitality.

Anonymous

When can you see us?

You'll need to set your alarm clock. Guided walks start at 5.30am and run on Sundays from 20 March till 8 May. We spend approximately one hour at the hide.

It takes half an hour to walk to the hide from the visitor centre. The walk includes a couple of small inclines and is uneven in a few places so should only be attempted if you are a confident walker and in moderate health.

When you return from your guided walk, why not pop into the visitor centre for hot drinks and a freshly cooked breakfast - Oneplanet Adventure won the best bacon butty in Wales 2006 award. At all other times, the centre is open Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 5pm.

What's at the site?

As well as seeing black grouse, there are speakers in the hide (attached to our microphone out on the moor) to let you hear all the interesting sounds males make as they try to woo any watching females.

How to find us

All details, including directions, will be posted to everyone booked on a walk.

What should I bring?

A suggested list of equipment and clothing is sent in the black grouse pack to those who book on a walk.

Still got some questions?

Telephone: To book your place on a walk please call 02920 353 008 between 9 am and 5 pm and ask for Vera. We can take payments over the phone.
E-mail: Vera.McCarthy@rspb.org.uk

This date has been brought to you in partnership with UPM Tilhill and Coed Llandegla.

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