Birdwatching in the National Park
The Conway Reserve on the Conway estuary
The rich diversity of habitats in Snowdonia attract many species of birds to the area. Habitats include upland bog, rocky crags, coniferous forest, river estuaries and coastline. There are many areas in the National Park which provide opportunities for birdwatching. Some of the best site are:-
Lake Vyrnwy Nature Reserve
Situated in the Berwyn Mountains. Spectacular Lake Vyrnwy is surrounded by some of the most superb scenery in Wales, with a mixture of heather moorland, forests, meadows, mountain streams and waterfalls.
Lake Vyrnwy is the largest nature Reserve in Wales and offers RSPB guided tours, nature trails, 3 hides, a shop and an information centre. Peregrines, buzzards, red grouse, dippers, woodwarblers and red start, a summer visitor to the woodlands. Watch for siskins coming to the feeding station near the centre. More on Lake Vyrnwy.
Penmaenpool Wildlife Centre
Siuated on the Mawddach Estuary, Penmaenpool is a Site of Special Scientific Interest. It is an important breeding site for wetland birds such as redshank and merganser. Water rails can also be observed in the winter.
There is a Wildlife Observation Centre in the old signal box at Penmaenpool with the the Garth Gell Bird Reserve opposite. Nature trails, Information Centre, buzzards, ravens, cormorants, pied flycatcher, woodwarblers, red start and more. More on Penmaenpool.
Dyfi National Nature Reserve
The Dyfi National Nature Reserve is situated at Aberdyfi on the Dyfi estuary. The reserve is managed by the Countryside Council for Wales. The area was designated a reserve in 1969 to protect the local wildlife and habitats.
The Ynyslas sand dunes form part of the Dyfi National Nature Reserve. The Dyfi estuary has been chosen by UNESCO as a Biosphere Reserve. The reserve offers excellent hides, wildfowl and wading birds. More on Aberdyfi
Situated on the Conway Estuary. Shallow pools by the estuary provide ideal roosting places for wildfowl and wading birds. More on the Conway Reserve
The Migneint lies near Ffestiniog. Situated on the back road between Ysbyty Ifan and Ffestiniog. A good site for moorland birds, it is the habitat of red grouse, wheatear, snipes and skylark. Some pairs of curlews and snipes still known to nest at the Migneint, and the short-eared owl has been sighted at dusk.
Situated near Bangor, the Aber Valley is a place of spectacular scenery and an excellent site for mountain and woodland birds such as buzzards, ravens and woodwarblers, as well as mountain birds such as ravens, buzzards and choughs. Other birds such as the sparrowhawk, kestrel and peregrine falcon can be sighted.
Lying on the coast near to Tywyn. This is a good site for observing sea-birds such as the red-throated diver, the eider duck and the common scoter. The bar-tailed godwit
and the little grebe have often be sighted at nearby Broadwater.
Birdwatching in the Lake District