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Doune and the surrounding area is littered with bird watching huts.  Birds you may be lucky enough to see include Red Kites, Peregrine, Kestrel, Buzzards, Sparrow Hawks and Hen Harriers as well as a wide variety of smaller birds.

Argaty Red Kites
Just a couple of miles north of Doune the RSPB and Scottish Natural Heritage have reintroduced the Red Kite and the Argaty Red Kite Centre  at Lerrocks Farm is central Scotland's only Red Kite feeding station. 

Visitors can watch these exciting birds in flight, enjoy the countryside and learn how farming and wildlife conservation can work hand-in-hand.

The population of Red Kites is still small and extremely vulnerable but it is expanding steadily.  The birds can be seen all year around. In the October to March period  the young ones are particularly gregarious.

From the Argaty Red Kite Centre there is a walk of about 500m on a gently sloping, winding path up to an hide which has 360 degree views. The hide will hold about 30 people. Both path and hide are suitable for people of all abilities to access.

 

Doune Ponds Nature Reserve

Doune Ponds Nature Reserve is a well regarded  and regularly used reclaimed sand and gravel quarry of about 40 acres in size. (Grid reference NN724022). There is a broad diversity of habitat types and it has varied soil types, a water table close to the surface and a large variety of Flora and Fauna. It has been managed for wildlife conservation, birds, fungi and for the recreational needs of local people. The site has been split up into different sections. It has three large ponds surrounded mainly by native regenerating Birch trees, Sallow, Osier and Willow. The large central pond has resident ducks, swans and many other varieties of migrating breeding birds.

The reserve is important for Fungi with over 300 species recorded including some rare ones. The regeneration of scrub and wetland plants has encouraged a wide range of invertebrates to colonise the site. Small mammals are present and attract Stoats, Foxes and Kestrels. There is also a small population of Red Squirrels.

There are footpaths through and round the area, most of which are surfaced, some are wheelchair accessible. A circular self guided nature trail exists around the central and west ponds  and woodland. Visitor facilities such as hides, interpretation boards, picnic tables and benches are in place. Doune Ponds has its own car park beside the site.

 



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