Winter, to many a time of reduced activity and long nights in. However, the qualities that make Dumfries and Galloway so unique, its particular location in relation to the specialist flora and fauna species of northern and southern latitudes and the warming influence of the Gulf Stream, come into their own now. We see snow capped mountains with their frozen flanks dominating many vistas in the west of the region contrasting with lowland landscapes that are able to host enough food to support internationally important populations of over-wintering birdlife, amongst other resident species.
All that means that the winter months are some of the busiest of the natural year in Dumfries and Galloway. We welcome back the barnacle Geese from Svalbard, who see the Solway area as a land of plenty in which to while away their winter months. You can delight and marvel at their daily rituals of feeding, bathing and having a good old gossip; their flights at dawn and dusk between their feeding and roosting grounds are an experience not quickly forgotten.
Winter is a particularly good time to experience the magic of the UKs first Dark Sky Park, a status given in recognition of the regions fantastic stargazing opportunities. Please take a look at www.forestry.gov.uk/darkskygalloway to see how you can make your time here that little bit more magical.
Winter really is a very busy time for nature here in Dumfries and Galloway and offers some of the regions most spectacular sights and sounds; it really is worth making the effort. Why not try:
- Barnacle Geese on the Solway (try RSPB Mersehead and WWT Caerlaverock)
- Waders at Powfoot, Newbie, Annan and Carsethorn, Southerness, Wigtown Bay, Loch Ryan
- Whooper Swans at WWT Caerlaverock
- Greenland Whitefronts at Loch Ken, Threave and the Castle Kennedy area
- Pale Bellied Brent Geese at Loch Ryan
Use the navigator bar at the side of the page to discover the range of events and other opportunities we have here in Dumfries and Galloway to get you closer to nature, to see and experience its excitement and its spectacles and to get in amongst its never ending stories.