Nightingale

Dawn Chorus

Enjoy the dawn chorus with us

This spring, let our experts help you discover the dawn chorus. It’s one of spring’s most delightful natural events and it’s also a chance to hone your identification skills, as native birds such as robins and skylarks are joined by summer migrants, including blackcaps and chiffchaffs.

One of the best places for birds

A song thrush singing whilst perched on a branch against a blue sky.

Join us on one of our special dawn chorus events at our nature reserves. From dawn chorus walks to birdsong breakfasts, we’ve an event for you. Hurry though - these events are very popular and get booked up.

Reserves

To find out more, pick a marker from the map or zoom in.
    • Arne

      Arne

      This is an unusual and special landscape where you can enjoy a vast expanse of open heathland and old oak woodland. Arne is a fantastic place for family walks at any time of year and we have regular children's days.

      See activities and events at Arne
    • Aylesbeare Common

      Aylesbeare Common

      You can enjoy a walk along firm paths over quiet heathland here and have a chance of seeing Dartford warblers and stonechats in summer. The woodland fringes, streams and ponds abound with butterflies, dragonflies and damselflies.

      See activities and events at Aylesbeare Common
    • Beckingham Marshes

      Beckingham Marshes

      This is a major habitat creation project on the River Trent floodplain, where we've created a wet grassland habitat.

      See activities and events at Beckingham Marshes
    • Bempton Cliffs

      Bempton Cliffs

      A family favourite, and easily the best place in England to see, hear and smell seabirds! More than 250,000 birds (from April to August) make the cliffs seem alive.

      See activities and events at Bempton Cliffs
    • Blacktoft Sands

      Blacktoft Sands

      Come to Blacktoft Sands throughout the year and see how many of our 270 species of birds you can see! The tidal reedbed is the largest in England and is important for its breeding bearded tits, bitterns and marsh harriers.

      See activities and events at Blacktoft Sands
    • Bowers Marsh

      Bowers Marsh

      Bowers Marsh is an ancient landscape alive with the sights and sounds of wildlife. Now, after careful restoration, it's ready and waiting for you to explore and enjoy.

      See activities and events at Bowers Marsh
    • Bowling Green and Goosemoor

      Bowling Green and Goosemoor

      This is on the east bank of the Exe Estuary, within easy walking distance of both Topsham High Street and our shop at Darts Farm. It overlooks the Clyst and allows over-wintering birds a choice of safe roosting sites.

      See activities at Bowling Green and Goosemoor
    • Brading Marshes

      Brading Marshes

      This is the RSPB's first reserve on the Isle of Wight. It covers most of the beautiful valley of the lower River Yar running from the village of Brading to the sea at Bembridge Harbour.

      See activities and events at Brading Marshes
    • Broadwater Warren

      Broadwater Warren

      An exciting new RSPB reserve just south of Tunbridge Wells. Acquired in January 2007, it is currently a large area of conifer plantation, plus remnants of heathland and woodland within the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

      See activities and events at Broadwater Warren
    • Burton Mere Wetlands

      Burton Mere Wetlands

      This is a wonderful place to enjoy nature. In the mid-1980s, we bought farmland here and turned it into a thriving wetland filled with glorious wildlife.

      See activities and events at Burton Mere Wetlands
    • Campfield Marsh

      Campfield Marsh

      The reserve is made up of a mosaic of saltmarsh, peatbogs, farmland and wet grassland providing homes for a great variety of native wildlife. Trails lead to a wheelchair accessible hide looking out over the main wet grassland area.

      See activities and events at Campfield Marsh
    • Carsington Water

      Carsington Water

      Owned and managed by Severn Trent Water, Carsington Water is a large reservoir. It boasts a range of wildlife habitats from ancient hedgerows, species-rich wildflower meadows and native woodlands, to pond and scrapes, reedbeds and islands.

      See activities and events at Carsington Water
    • Church Wood

      Church Wood

      This is a beautiful place for a quiet woodland walk. You can take a stroll along dappled paths through beech, ash and oak trees. In springtime you can enjoy a carpet of sweet scented bluebells and there is also a flourishing meadow.

      See activities and events at Church Wood
    • Coombes Valley

      Coombes Valley

      This is a delightful oak woodland to walk through - especially in spring and early summer when lots of migrating birds come to breed at the reserve.

      See activities and events at Coombes Valley
    • Darts Farm

      Darts Farm

      On the outskirts of Exeter, Darts Farm is home to a large variety of birds, insects and other wildlife. Our shop here is part of a large shopping complex in beautiful farmland, with ponds and wetland areas.

      See activities and events at Darts Farm
    • Parkgate

      Parkgate

      Come to Parkgate to see ducks, geese, wading birds and birds of prey exploring the marsh. During low tides, birds stay far out on the Dee estuary, so the best time to visit is during high tide.

      See activities and events at Parkgate
    • Dove Stone

      Dove Stone

      A landscape that will take your breath away. Towering hills, sheer rock faces, swathes of open moorland, a picturesque reservoir - that's Dove Stone, the northern gateway to the Peak District National Park.

      See activities and events at Dove Stone
    • Dungeness

      Dungeness

      If you haven't been to Dungeness, nothing can quite prepare you for this landscape - mile after mile of shingle, wild and weird!

      See activities and events at Dungeness
    • Fairburn Ings

      Fairburn Ings

      With pond-dipping, regular fun events and walks to help you get away from it all, RSPB Fairburn Ings is the ideal place for adults and children to find out more about wildlife.

      See activities and events at Fairburn Ings
    • Farnham Heath

      Farnham Heath

      Part of the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and an example of heathland restoration in progress. By clearing the dense rows of conifers, we are opening up the land to create bright sunny areas where wildlife can flourish.

      See activities and events at Farnham Heath
    • Fen Drayton Lakes

      Fen Drayton Lakes

      This complex of lakes and traditional riverside meadows next to the River Great Ouse used to be gravel workings. It is a fantastic place to explore and watch birds with huge numbers of ducks, swans and geese on the lakes in winter.

      See activities and events at Fen Drayton Lakes
    • Flatford Wildlife Garden

      Flatford Wildlife Garden

      In a quiet corner of Suffolk, we have transformed an overgrown, forgotten garden into our first dedicated wildlife garden. Why not pay a visit and be inspired to garden for wildlife in your own garden!

      See activities and events at Flatford Wildlife Garden
    • Frampton Marsh

      Frampton Marsh

      A major new extension to this coastal wetland reserve includes a reedbed, large freshwater scrapes and wet grassland. These habitats have all been created to bring the wildlife of The Wash closer to you.

      See activities and events at Frampton Marsh
    • Freiston Shore

      Freiston Shore

      At Freiston Shore you can get excellent views of waterbirds on the salt water lagoon, especially at high tide when wading birds roost, sometimes in their thousands.

      See activities and events at Freiston Shore
    • Geltsdale

      Geltsdale

      Set in the beautiful North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), Geltsdale is home to black grouse, birds of prey and breeding waders and ideal for walking. There are four waymarked trails leading from the car park at Howgill.

      See activities and events at Geltsdale
    • Ham Wall

      Ham Wall

      Here you can enjoy a newly created wetland, which provides a safe home for many rare species including water voles and otters. In spring the reedbeds are alive with birdsong and in autumn you can see kingfishers.

      See activities and events at Ham Wall
    • Havergate Island

      Havergate Island

      This small island in the River Ore is famous for its breeding avocets and terns, which can be seen throughout the spring and summer. Access is by boat only and the trip to the island helps you really feel you're getting away from it all.

      See activities and events at Havergate Island
    • Hazeley Heath

      Hazeley Heath

      Explore these last remaining pieces of a habitat that once covered much of southern England.

      See activities and Events at Hazeley Heath
    • Highnam Woods

      Highnam Woods

      This is a lovely remnant of ancient woodland, with a 2 km nature trail passing amongst a variety of trees. Visit in spring to hear a symphony of birdsong, especially the nightingales which breed here, and to see bluebells and primroses.

      See activities and events at Highnam Woods
    • Labrador Bay

      Labrador Bay

      This nature reserve was purchased in 2008 to help secure the future of the cirl bunting. Being such a well-known beauty spot, offering stunning views over Lyme Bay, the site already attracts many thousands of visitors a year.

      See activities and events at Labrador Bay
    • Lakenheath Fen

      Lakenheath Fen

      We've converted an area of arable farmland into a large wetland. There is a visitor centre where you can find out more about the reserve, its wildlife and history.

      See activities and events at Lakenheath Fen
    • Leighton Moss

      Leighton Moss

      The largest reedbed in north-west England, and home to some really special birds such as breeding bitterns, bearded tits and marsh harriers. You might see deer too, not to mention butterflies aplenty!

      See activities and events at Leighton Moss
    • Marshside

      Marshside

      There's something for everyone all year round at this delightful coastal reserve. In the spring you can see brown hares boxing in the fields, while in the early summer you'll spot nesting birds like avocets and lapwings.

      See activities and events at Marshside
    • Matford and Mutton Marsh

      Matford and Mutton Marsh

      A small, relatively new site halfway between Exeter and Exminster - just three miles from the city centre. It's one of our Exe Estuary reserves.

      See activities and events at Matford and Mutton Marsh
    • Medmerry

      Medmerry

      Welcome to what is set to be our newest nature reserve. Medmerry offers long walks and cycle rides through an amazing new landscape only a stone's throw from Pagham Harbour.

      See activities and events at Medmerry
    • Middleton Lakes

      Middleton Lakes

      Nestled in the beautiful Tame valley, just south of Tamworth on the Staffordshire/Warwickshire border, Middleton Lakes is our latest nature reserve to open to the public.

      See activities and events at Middleton Lakes
    • Minsmere

      Minsmere

      There's so much to see and hear at Minsmere: splendid woodland, wetland and coastal scenery, rare birds breeding and calling in on their migrations, shy wildlife like otters, the 'booming' of bitterns in spring, beautiful bugs and flowers.

      See activities and events at Minsmere
    • Nagshead

      Nagshead

      Spring here is an especially good time to visit as you can wander along the trails looking for pied flycatchers, redstarts and species of tits around the nestboxes. There are hawfinches and all three British woodpeckers in the woods.

      See activities and events at Nagshead
    • North Warren

      North Warren

      This delightful reserve contains grazing marshes, reedbeds, heathland and woodland. Thousands of ducks, swans and geese use the marshes in winter, while spring brings breeding bitterns, marsh harriers, woodlarks and nightingales.

      See activities and events at North Warren
    • Northward Hill

      Northward Hill

      On a ridge overlooking the Thames Marshes and its marsh harriers, Northward Hill includes scrubland rich in nightingales and whitethroats, a lovely bluebell wood, a large rookery and a cherry orchard.

      See activities and events at Northward Hill
    • Old Moor

      Old Moor

      Right at the heart of the Dearne Valley, Old Moor is a wonderful place to come and watch wildlife. The skies, fields and open water are teeming with birds throughout the year.

      See activities and events at Old Moor
    • Ouse Fen

      Ouse Fen

      In the Cambridgeshire Fens we're working with Hanson on an ambitious scheme. We're transforming a working sand and gravel quarry into a vast nature reserve with open water, grassland and, when complete, the biggest reedbed in the UK.

      See activities and events at Ouse Fen
    • Pagham Harbour Local Nature Reserve

      Pagham Harbour Local Nature Reserve

      Pagham Harbour is a glorious and peaceful nature reserve, one of the few undeveloped stretches of the Sussex coast, and an internationally important wetland site for wildlife.

      See activities and events at Pagham Harbour Local Nature
    • Pulborough Brooks

      Pulborough Brooks

      Set in the heart of beautiful countryside, this reserve is a fantastic day out for people of all ages. Walks lead through hedge-lined paths to viewing areas and hides where volunteers are often on hand to help point out the wildlife.

      See activities and events at Pulborough Brooks
    • Radipole Lake

      Radipole Lake

      A nature reserve in central Weymouth sounds unlikely, but once you are on the footpath amongst the reeds and lagoons you could be far away in the countryside.

      See activities and events at Radipole Lake
    • Rainham Marshes

      Rainham Marshes

      We acquired Rainham Marshes in 2000 and set about transforming it into a great place for nature and people. You can expect to see breeding wading birds in spring and summer, and large flocks of wild ducks in winter.

      See activities and events at Rainham Marshes
    • Ribble Discovery Centre

      Ribble Discovery Centre

      Come to our visitor centre on the edge of Fairhaven Lake. It's the gateway to the north side of the Ribble Estuary - the most important single river estuary in the UK - which attracts over 270,000 birds each year.

      See activities and events at Ribble Discovery Centre
    • Rye Meads

      Rye Meads

      For a great family trip, visit this delightful wetland reserve beside the River Lee. Rye Meads is a favourite with walkers, birdwatchers and photographers too.

      See activities and events at Rye Meads
    • Saltholme

      Saltholme

      Come and explore our huge wetland and all its wildlife, but don't forget to make time for our brilliant café - just follow your nose for freshly-brewed coffee, gooey cakes and mouthwatering meals.

      See activities and events at Saltholme
    • Sandwell Valley

      Sandwell Valley

      You can escape for an hour or two at this oasis for wildlife, less than five miles from the centre of Birmingham.

      See activities and events at Sandwell Valley
    • Snape

      Snape

      Snape is an exciting new reserve where we're recreating important wetland and heathland areas.

      See activities and events at Snape
    • Snettisham

      Snettisham

      This is the place to witness two of the UK's great wildlife spectacles: tens of thousands of wading birds wheeling over the mudflats, or packed onto banks and islands in front of our hides at high tide.

      See activities and events at Snettisham
    • South Essex Wildlife Garden

      South Essex Wildlife Garden

      The Wildlife Garden and Visitor Centre are located within Basildon District Council's Wat Tyler Country Park and are the gateway to our South Essex reserves.

      See activities and events at South Essex Wildlife Garden
    • Stour Estuary

      Stour Estuary

      Enjoy trails up to five miles long as you stroll through a wood and watch wading birds, ducks and geese on the estuary. In spring, nightingales and other birds fill the woods with song. The spring flowers are also particularly beautiful.

      See activities and events at Stour Estuary
    • Strumpshaw Fen

      Strumpshaw Fen

      Walk round the reedbeds, woodlands and orchid-rich meadows and you could chance upon marsh harriers, bitterns and kingfishers. Come in spring and summer when the meadows bloom with flowers, and see an array of dragonflies and butterflies.

      See activities and events at Strumpshaw Fen
    • Swell Wood

      Swell Wood

      The ancient oaks of Swell Wood are part of a continuous strip of woodland extending some 10 miles along the ridge from Langport to the Blackdown Hills.

      See activities and events at Swell Wood
    • The Lodge

      The Lodge

      The nature reserve here opened in 1961. The woodland, heath and acid grassland along the Greensand Ridge are being restored to form the largest stretch of heathland in Bedfordshire.

      See activities and events at The Lodge
    • Titchwell Marsh

      Titchwell Marsh

      This popular reserve on the north Norfolk coast has something for everyone. A walk from the visitor centre down to the sandy beach takes you past reedbeds and shallow lagoons, which are often full of birds.

      See activities and events at Titchwell Marsh
    • Wallasea Island Wild Coast project

      Wallasea Island Wild Coast project

      This is a landmark conservation and engineering scheme for the 21st century, on a scale never before attempted in the UK and the largest of its type in Europe.

      See activities and events at Wallasea Island Wild Coast project
    • West Canvey Marsh

      West Canvey Marsh

      This is the largest single area of green space on Canvey Island. This wonderful wetland reserve includes nearly two miles (3 km) of new nature trails, three viewing points, a picnic area and children's adventure area.

      See activities and events at West Canvey Marsh
    • Aghatirourke

      Aghatirourke

      Aghatirourke is part of the Cuilcagh Mountain World Geopark in County Fermanagh. It's an area of extensive upland blanket bog habitat bordered by limestone grassland to the north, and montane heath on the summit to the south.

      See activities and events at Aghatirourke
    • Belfast's Window on Wildlife

      Belfast's Window on Wildlife

      Nestled in the heart of the Belfast Harbour Estate, Belfast Window on Wildlife is home to birds and wildlife from all over the world, and you can get up close and personal with them from the comfort of the visitor centre.

      See activities and events at Belfasts Window on Wildlife
    • Lough Foyle

      Lough Foyle

      These remote mudflats and fields are the ideal place to see brent geese, whooper swans and wigeons in the early winter months. The best vantage points are on the minor roads off the A2 between Limavady and Londonderry.

      See activities and events at Lough Foyle
    • Lower Lough Erne Islands

      Lower Lough Erne Islands

      Lough Erne is one of the largest freshwater lakes in the UK. Take a leisurely stroll around the forest trails and look across to some of the 40 islands that make up most of the reserve, two of which you can visit by boat.

      See activities and events at Lower Lough Erne Islands
    • Portmore Lough

      Portmore Lough

      Portmore Lough is a great day out at any time of year. In summer, the hay meadows attract a bewildering variety of insects, while in the winter greylag geese, whooper swans and thousands of ducks can be seen from the hide.

      See activities and events at Portmore Lough
    • Rathlin Island

      Rathlin Island

      Rathlin Island has a rare, untamed beauty. The wildlife is evident before you step ashore - the ferry crossing presents many opportunities to spot auks, gannets and gulls with even a chance of porpoises or dolphins.

      See activities and events at Rathlin Island
    • Loch Lomond

      Loch Lomond

      RSPB Loch Lomond is one of the best places for wildlife in Scotland. On the southeast shores of Loch Lomond, the site has a remarkable mix of habitats.

      See activities and events at Loch Lomond
    • Wood of Cree

      Wood of Cree

      The Wood of Cree is the largest ancient wood in southern Scotland. In spring, the woodland really comes alive, with bluebells on the ground and birdsong in the air. The wood is the perfect place to see willow tits.

      See activities and events at Wood of Cree
    • Loch Leven

      Loch Leven

      Part of the Loch Leven National Nature Reserve, this is an ideal day out for all the family. Visit our hides for close-up views of wildlife.

      See activities and events at Loch Leven
    • Trumland

      Trumland

      The best time to visit this typical piece of Orkney moorland is during the summer months, when you should see breeding red-throated divers, hen harriers, merlins and short-eared owls.

      See activities and events at Trumland
    • Troup Head

      Troup Head

      The high cliffs of Troup Head provide a spectacular setting for Scotland's only mainland gannet colony. There are also thousands of kittiwakes, guillemots and razorbills, along with several other species, including puffins.

      See activities and events at Troup Head
    • Tollie Red Kites

      Tollie Red Kites

      With stunning views across Easter Ross to Ben Wyvis, Tollie Red Kites provides close-up views of our most graceful bird of prey. A team of volunteers feed the birds every day and you can watch them in comfort.

      See activities and events at Tollie Red Kites
    • The Oa

      The Oa

      Rugged coastline and open moorland. The diversity of landscapes make this reserve a pleasure to visit. If you're new to birdwatching, why not come on one of our guided walks - you might see a rare chough or perhaps a golden eagle.

      See activities and events at The Oa
    • The Loons and Loch of Banks

      The Loons and Loch of Banks

      The Loons and Loch of Banks are the largest remaining wetlands in Orkney, and the perfect places to see wetland wildlife at its best. Enjoy the tranquillity of pools surrounded by yellow flag iris.

      See activities and events at The Loons and Loch of Banks
    • Onziebust

      Onziebust

      Come during the spring and summer and you will see a wonderfully exuberant display of summer flowers and possibly the rare great yellow bumblebee.

      See activities and events at Onziebust
    • Noup Cliffs

      Noup Cliffs

      Reaching over 76 metres above the sea, these dramatic cliffs house Orkney's largest seabird colony. Once seen, it's never forgotten! Walk along the cliff path in the summer and you'll see an array of wildflowers.

      See activities and events at Noup Cliffs
    • North Hill

      North Hill

      Situated on the island of Papa Westray, North Hill may seem remote but it's a very exciting place to come and visit. The reserve is home to an extremely rare plant, the Scottish primrose.

      See activities and events at North Hill
    • Mull of Galloway

      Mull of Galloway

      Everywhere you turn there's a stunning view. To the west is the Solway Firth and Irish Sea, with the Isle of Man in the distance, while all around you is the frenzied activity of a large cliff colony of seabirds.

      See activities and events at Mull of Galloway
    • Mill Dam, Shapinsay

      Mill Dam, Shapinsay

      This is an ideal place for birds throughout the year. In summer, you'll see large numbers of breeding wildfowl, including pintails, redshanks and wigeons, while in the winter migrating whooper swans and other birds visit.

      See activities and events at Mill Dam
    • Mersehead

      Mersehead

      Discover the breathtaking scenery and wildlife that's typical of this region. Stroll along the nature trails and use the viewing hides to explore at your own pace.

      See activities and events at Mersehead
    • Marwick Head

      Marwick Head

      This remote headland has spectacular displays of wild flowers, including sea campion, thrift and spring squill. In spring and summer, thousands of seabirds nest on the cliffs. In August, look out for great yellow bumblebees.

      See activities and events at Marwick Head
    • Lochwinnoch

      Lochwinnoch

      As one of the few wetlands left in west Scotland, Lochwinnoch is an ideal day out for all the family. It's the perfect spot to watch whooper swans, wigeons and a wide variety of ducks during the winter months.

      See activities and events at Lochwinnoch
    • Loch of Strathbeg

      Loch of Strathbeg

      Britain's largest dune loch is a joy to visit any time of year. In winter, thousands of wild geese, swans and ducks fly in, including 20 per cent of the world's population of pink-footed geese - it's a sight you'll never forget.

      See activities and events at Loch of Strathbeg
    • Loch na Muilne

      Loch na Muilne

      This is a fantastic place to see a variety of breeding birds. During spring and summer, its most special inhabitants are red-necked phalaropes - tiny wading birds which feed by swimming on the loch in search of insects.

      See activities and events at Loch na Muilne
    • Loch Gruinart

      Loch Gruinart

      There's always plenty to see at Loch Gruinart. In autumn, thousands of white-fronted and barnacle geese arrive from Greenland. When they leave in spring, wading birds take centre stage.

      See activities and events at Loch Gruinart
    • Loch Garten, Abernethy

      Loch Garten, Abernethy

      When ospreys returned to breed in Scotland, this ancient Caledonian pineforest is where they chose to come. The Loch Garten Osprey Centre provides fantastic views of these magnificent birds on the nest.

      See activities and events at Loch Garten
    • Inversnaid

      Inversnaid

      Inversnaid is on the east shore of Loch Lomond, where oak woodland rises steeply from the loch and gives way to open moorland with spectacular views. In the summer months you might see pied flycatchers here, as well as buzzards.

      See activities and events at Inversnaid
    • Hoy

      Hoy

      This mixture of moorland and cliff tops may be exposed to the elements, so you really do need to wrap up warm, but a visit is very rewarding. You'll see the famous Old Man of Hoy rock stack.

      See activities and events at Hoy
    • Hobbister

      Hobbister

      This reserve is a magical mixture of land and sea, from sea cliffs to saltmarsh, from moorland to sandflats. Stroll through the moorland and you may well see hen harriers, short-eared owls and red-throated divers, all of which nest here.

      See activities and events at Hobbister
    • Glenborrodale

      Glenborrodale

      Here on the shore of Loch Sunart, on the rugged Ardnamurchan peninsula, wood warblers nest in the spring, along with redstarts, spotted flycatchers and other woodland birds. You may well see an otter along the shore, and seals are common.

      See activities and events at Glenborrodale
    • Fowlsheugh

      Fowlsheugh

      If you're new to birdwatching, what better way to see the beauty of birds close up than by visiting a seabird cliff colony? The spectacular cliffs at Fowlsheugh are packed with 130,000 breeding seabirds in the spring and summer.

      See activities and events at Fowlsheugh
    • Forsinard Flows

      Forsinard Flows

      A threatened landscape, peatlands have vanished across much of Scotland, but the RSPB is helping to preserve this vital area of internationally important habitat. Summer is the time to come.

      See activities and events at Forsinard Flows
    • Dunnet Head

      Dunnet Head

      The most northerly point in mainland Britain, Dunnet Head has stunning sea cliffs and coastal grassland. These are home to puffins, razorbills, guillemots, fulmars, kittiwakes, shags and cormorants.

      See activities and events at Dunnet Head
    • Crook of Baldoon

      Crook of Baldoon

      The view that opens up in front of you is breathtaking. Cairnsmore of Fleet and the Galloway Hills act as a backdrop to wild saltmarsh and mudflats which positively ooze with birdlife.

      See activities and events at Crook of Baldoon
    • Cottascarth and Rendall Moss

      Cottascarth and Rendall Moss

      If you'd like to visit a remote, tranquil wildlife haven, and enjoy the chance to see majestic raptors such as hen harriers and merlins, this is the place to come.

      See activities and events at Cottascarth and Rendall Moss
    • Brodgar

      Brodgar

      Could there be a more spellbinding and mystical setting? This reserve surrounds the monument of the ring of Brodgar. Visit during the summer and hear the unmistakable bubbling cries of the curlews and the drumming of the snipe.

      See activities and events at Brodgar
    • Birsay Moors

      Birsay Moors

      If you enjoy the solemn grandeur of moorland landscape, the Orkney moors can be a wonderful place to visit, full of wild and windswept beauty. Come during the summer to see hen harriers, short-eared owls and elegant Arctic skuas nesting.

      See activities and events at Birsay Moors
    • Baron's Haugh

      Baron's Haugh

      A real gem for wildlife and for visitors, too. Spend time in one of the four hides, looking out at the ducks and swans on the haugh, or take a walk through the woods. If you're lucky you may even see a kingfisher or an otter on the river.

      See activities and events at Barons Haugh
    • Balranald

      Balranald

      This beautiful Hebridean reserve has sandy beaches, rocky foreshore, marshes and sand-dunes. An information centre explains the importance of traditional crofting agriculture for corncrakes and other wildlife.

      See activities and events at Balranald
    • Coed Garth Gell

      Coed Garth Gell

      Nestled in the spectacular Mawddach valley, Coed Garth Gell is a woodland and heathland nature reserve. The visitor trails weave through beautiful oak woodland with a fast-flowing river in the valley bottom.

      See activities and events at Coed Garth Gell
    • Conwy

      Conwy

      Situated on the banks of the Conwy estuary, with magnificent views of Snowdonia and Conwy Castle, this reserve is delightful at any time of year.

      See activities and events at Conwy
    • Gwenffrwd-Dinas

      Gwenffrwd-Dinas

      Enjoy a walk through enchanting alder and oak woodland, past fast-flowing, spectacular rivers. This reserve is set in the heart of the beauty of mid Wales.

      See activities and events at Gwenffrwd-Dinas
    • Lake Vyrnwy

      Lake Vyrnwy

      Our visitor centre and well-stocked shop are the ideal places to start your visit. Join a trail through the woodland and wildlife is soon all around you.

      See activities and events at Lake Vyrnwy
    • Newport Wetlands

      Newport Wetlands

      This nature reserve offers a haven for wildlife on the edge of the city, but is a great place for people too with our visitor centre, a cafe, shop and children's play area.

      See activities and events at Newport Wetlands
    • Point of Ayr

      Point of Ayr

      Come during the winter months and you'll be able to see thousands of birds feeding. High tide is the best time to visit, when the rising waters force the birds onto the saltmarshes, so you get even closer views.

      See activities and events at Point of Ayr
    • Ramsey Island

      Ramsey Island

      This dramatic offshore island has cliffs up to 120 m high, the perfect place for breeding seabirds in spring and early summer. Walk along the coastal heathland and enjoy the spectacular views.

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    • South Stack Cliffs

      South Stack Cliffs

      Enjoy a close-up view onto a wonderful cliff-side nesting colony, with binoculars and telescopes provided. You'll be able to watch guillemots, razorbills and puffins all raising their young.

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    • Ynys-hir

      Ynys-hir

      Ynys-hir mixes Welsh oak woodland with wet grassland and saltmarshes. Feast your eyes from any of our seven hides - look out for birds of prey.

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    Looking out for love

    This early morning cacophony coincides with spring and is all about defending territory and finding a mate. Singing is hard work, and it is the fittest, best-fed males who produce the strongest, most impressive songs. The females are on the look-out for the best singers as they are more likely to be good at raising chicks, to have a good territory, and to pass successful genes to their young.

    Why so early?

    Wren Troglodytes troglodytes, perched on small branch, singing , Hampshire

    Singing at dawn appears to have several advantages. The dim light means the birds may be harder to spot by a predator. Similarly the poor light makes foraging for food difficult, so perhaps it is a better time to be singing for a mate. Sound can also carry further: as the air is often still at this time and, with less background noise, songs can carry up to 20 times as far.