The County of Angus is bounded by a ring of hills on the inland side, with the river North Esk in the north and nearly to the river Tay in the South, with the North Sea on the east and the eastern peaks of the Grampian Hills in the west. This gives a good range of habitats from rocky coast through farmland with small woodlands up to the glens. The whole area is laced with rivers and streams.
The Angus glens are oriented roughly NW to SE and the main ones are (from the northernmost) Glen Esk (river North Esk); Glen Lethnot (West Water and Water of Saughs); Glen Clova (South Esk); Glen Prosen (Prosen Water); and Glen Isla (Isla). There are a further fifteen smaller glens leading off the main ones. The main glens rise from 100m to 939m (Mount Keen). The land from the 100m line to the coast is intensively farmed (mainly arable) but areas of woodland break up the scenery.
This means a wide range of habitats and hence a good range of birds.
Below are some of the places to go birdwatching in Angus, starting with the main reserves:
3 miles north of Arbroath, Cliffs good for puffins in summer.
(SWT) 5 miles east of Forfar on the A932. Public viewing point with room for 5 cars and a hide with car park at the west end available to key holders (Keys from Montrose Basin Ranger).
Near Carnoustie on A930
Broughty Ferry Beach
Typical beach birds
Caenlochan National Nature Reserve
Large mountainous plateau with arctic plants and sub-arctic birds. Access from Glen Clova and Glen Isla.
Crombie Country Park
6 miles north of Monifieth on B961. A man-made reservoir with surrounding woodlands.
Fishtown of Usan
Car park at Leisure Centre. Path round loch with public hide at west end.
16 miles north west of Edzell. Natural loch set in dramatic mountain setting 20-minute walk from car park in Glen Esk.
Loch of Kinnordy
(RSPB) 1 mile west of Kirriemuir on B951 Open daily in Spring and Summer and at weekends for the rest of year. Three hides (one accessible to wheelchairs) viewing the loch. There is a large black-headed gull breeding colony. Black necked grebe and ruddy duck. Osprey during summer and pink-footed and greylag geese during autumn/winter.
Loch of Lintrathen
(SWT) 8 miles west of Kirriemuir on B951. A SSSI and Ramsar site. Access restricted to key holders (which opens both the car park and hide) as the loch is a public water supply (Keys from Montrose Basin Ranger). There are several parking places on surrounding public roads with good views of the loch. Pink-footed and greylag geese during autumn/winter.
Monikie Country Park
4 miles north of Monifieth on B961. A man-made reservoir with surrounding woodlands.
(Forestry Commission) 4 miles south of Brechin on A933. Open access from rides on foot only. Mostly conifer plantation with some deciduous trees, open moor and ponds.
The Montrose Basin Local Nature Reserve covers 1024ha in all. The majority of the reserve lies below the high water mark of ordinary spring tides but, particularly at the western end, there are slightly more elevated areas with zones of salt marsh, reed bed, brackish and fresh water, unimproved grassland and arable land. It contains SSSI's and is a Ramsar site and a Special Protection Area, so is well protected from development. The site is managed by the The Scottish Wildlife Trust.
76 Torridon Road, Broughty Ferry, Dundee DD5 3JH
Number of Species
Number of bird species: 305
County Bird - Golden Eagle Aquila chrysaetos
Angus & Dundee Bird Report
Copies of the Report are available directly from Brian J. Cartwright, The Woodlands, School Road, Luthermuir, Laurencekirk, Kincardineshire, AB30 1YX. Telephone: (01674) 840220 or E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Price is ?6.50 including postage and packing. Cheques should be made payable to "Scottish Ornithologists Club".
Where to Watch Birds in Scotland
Mike Madders and Julia Welstead - 297 pages, b/w illus, maps - Christopher Helm
ISBN: 071365693XBuy this book from NHBS.com
Forums & Mailing Lists
Angus Birding Grapevine
List contact: MarkCaunt@hotmail.com
The aim of the forum is to provide current information (and be a referral for past records) of Birds, Mammals and Cetaceans in the Angus and Eastern Scotland area. This is done via a forum open to public, where sightings can be posted and viewed freely. Sightings are obviously not guaranteed but filtered as best as possible and news regarding sensitive species may be edited if need be…
Guides & Tour Operators
Local birders willing to show visiting birders around their area…
CloudBirders was created by a group of Belgian world birding enthusiasts and went live on 21st of March 2013. They provide a large and growing database of birding trip reports, complemented with extensive search, voting and statistical features.
Places to Stay
There is a range of countryside; rivers, forestry, lochs, the gentle Sidlaw Hills or the more mountainous area of the Grampians and Angus Glens with a chance to bag Munros. We hold a collection of local ordnance survey maps and can advise you on suitable walking routes or act as guides for you.
Located towards the northern end of the Strathmore Valley five miles north of Forfar and easily accessible from the A90 Dundee/Aberdeen trunk road, Finavon Farmhouse is ideally situated to explore Angus and surrounding counties.
The Haven B&B - Montrose
Some of Europe's finest and unspoilt coastline awaits you on the North east Coastal Trail, and, starting at St. Cyrus, Montrose is close enough to embark on your adventure through rich heritage, breath-taking views and many harbour pubs!
Angus & Dundee Bird Club
Angus and Dundee Bird Club was founded in 1997 and we now have almost 200 members; we have an active Birders Grapevine for our members, a Sea Watching Hide at Lunan bay Angus, Field outings programme and Indoor meetings programme.
Scottish Wildlife - Angus & Dundee Members Centre
The purpose of these pages is to keep our members informed of what is happening in the Members Centre and at the same time to tell everyone about wildlife in our part of Scotland…
Loch of Lintrathen
From late autumn onwards birds flock to the reserve in their thousands - especially greylag geese returning from their summer breeding grounds in Iceland. The geese leave the loch during the daytime to forage over stubble and potato fields and, later in the winter, to graze over grassland. As they return in the late afternoon to their safe roost on the reserve, the noisy skeins of birds filling the sky make an impressive sight and sound…
Montrose Basin Wildlife Centre
Montrose Basin is the 750 hectare enclosed estuary of the South Esk river. Virtuallu untouched by industrial development and pollution, the Basin provides a rich feeding ground for thousands of resident and migrant birds.
The aim of this web site is to provide the Electronic Birding Community with information at there finger tips of what birds are currently about, primarily in the area of Angus and the Eastern Side of Scotland (Aberdeenshire, Highland & Fife). If there is something of interest fairly nearby, then that will get put on too!
Places to watch birds in Angus
Here are some of the places to go birdwatching in Angus. A mix of reserves and countryside ranging from cliffs and sea-watching to woodland to mountains.
Photographers & Artists
Photographer - Mark Caunt
Superb photos - the Latin American ones are particularly stunning!