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Birdwatching

With safe and accessible cliff top paths and an abundance of forestry trails, the Banffshire Coast is a walker's little piece of heaven - and there are plenty of places where our diverse bird life is the only company you will enjoy.

But did you know that we have a huge city with tens of thousands of inhabitants right on our doorstep.  This is Seabird City, home to Scotland's only mainland gannet colony as well as thousands of puffins, shags, kittiwakes, guillemots and razorbills.  The birds can be found on the cliffs at Troup Head - an RSPB nature reserve - and are a must for those with a keen interest in birdlife.  Watching the gannets close their wings before plunging headfirst into the sea for their lunch is spectacular.

Each season has its own highlights; the gannets and other seabirds leave the cliffs to spend winter at sea, but the Banffshire Coast is a haven for wonderful waders and winter visitors such as eider ducks and long-tailed ducks.

But for those not so keen on walking along the cliffs, there are plenty more places all over the Banffshire Coast which are a haven for a variety of species.

One favourite is the circular route which takes in the grounds of the impressive Duff House mansion, and skirts the River Deveron as it snakes to the wonderful Bridge of Alvah.  Along this walk you will encounter a vast array of birds, from the common wood pigeon and blackbirds, through to the predatory buzzard and the gold crest - the UK's smallest bird.  Kingfishers, bull finches, willow warblers, mallard and reed bunting make up just a handful of the species that can be seen.

For more information on walks, look up the 30+ walks listed here.

For details of boat trips to Troup Head and other wildlife hotspots, click here.

For more information on the RSPB, click here.

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