Grey Mare’s Tail Nature Reserve has a rich animal life. It’s most well known for the peregrine falcons that nest here every year. Ravens, buzzards, wheatears, stonechats, dippers, grey wagtails and kestrels are all frequently seen, but also watch out for ring ouzels, red grouse, merlins, sparrowhawks – and if you’re really lucky, ospreys fishing in Loch Skeen. A recent project to reinforce the population of golden eagles in southern Scotland has also increased your chances of seeing this magnificent bird here.

Feral goats have roamed the Moffat Hills for hundreds of years, and the path to Loch Skeen often provides a good chance of seeing them. During the autumn rut, look out for mature males fighting each other for the right to mate with females. Loch Skeen is also home to Britain’s rarest freshwater fish, the vendace. If you venture further onto the higher slopes you might catch a glimpse of a mountain hare.

You can also check out our wildlife spotter’s guide for Grey Mare’s Tail, and see how many you can spot during your next visit:

Wildlife spotter’s guide: Grey Mare’s Tail