RSPB Nigg Bay, Tain IV19, UK

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RSPB Scotland Nigg Bay Nature Reserve

Nigg Bay reserve is a vast area of mudflat, saltmarsh and wet grassland that lies along the NC500 route. It is located within the Cromarty Firth Site of Special Scientific Interest and Special Protection area. Take a seat in the well placed hide and listen to the ‘bubbling’ call of the curlew, gaze at graceful wildfowl and enjoy spectacular views across the bay. The saltmarsh also supports many varied plants like sea aster and glasswort. To get the most out of your visit, try to arrive 2-3 hours before or after high tide as that is when the ducks, waders and geese are closest to the hide.

What will you see:

The most spectacular time to visit is in October when pink-footed geese and wintering ducks arrive in the thousands to feed and shelter over the winter. From October to March you’re sure to see countless wading birds and wildfowl, such as bar-tailed godwit, knot, pink-footed geese, whooper swan and wigeon. Dunlin, curlew and lapwing are frequent visitors throughout the year. During the spring and summer, northern marsh orchids are dotted amongst the grass and amphibious bistort grows in the pond. Make sure to take your binoculars as there is lots to see here.

Images by: Andy Hay, John Bowler, Chris Gomersall, Ben Hall (rspb-images.com)

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