Trip Reports | Home                                                                    

Kindrogan Field Centre

Perthshire Scotland


10 - 17 June 2011

Observers: F. Simpson




Early June saw me heading back to Scotland to work on an undergraduate university field course for a week. The usual location for this is the Field Studies Council's Kindrogan Field Centre near Enochdhu in picturesque Strathardle, Perthshire. The field centre is set in an old Victorian estate with a small area of mixed woodland along the banks of the River Ardle at the foot of Kindrogan Hill, largely cloaked in spruce forestry plantation with smaller areas of larch. Strathardle is dominated by pastoral farmland in the glen and moorland on the higher ground. Further to the west lies Glen Brerachan holding some nice heather moorland and small patches of open birch woodland. This trip report details the birds found mainly around the field centre. Glen Brerachan looks like it would be worth some exploration with raptors, grouse and upland birds a probability for those with more time. Around 80 species were noted. Several species were recorded in much lower numbers this year, probably as a result of a second long, hard winter. A family of Pine Martens was seen by one group of students on Kindrogan Hill.


Kindrogan Trip Reports:  2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 |

Location Guide to LocationsSummary 2005-2018


 Mill Loch, Cateran Trail  Fraser Simpson        Strathardle  Fraser Simpson





Sketch map of the area



Kindrogan Field Centre & environs, Strathardle, Perthshire                                        sunrise 0423h, sunset 2210h on 16/6


Mute Swan  Cygnus olor

Pair at Straloch on 16/6.

Little Grebe  Tachybaptus ruficollis

Pair with b/2 at Straloch on 16/6.

Grey Heron  Ardea cinerea

Scarce - not much sign of birds around the heronries; 3 ads on 17/6; ad + juv in Glen Brerachan on 17/6.

Canada Goose  Branta canadensis

Three adults and two juveniles at Straloch on 16/6.

Wigeon  Anas penelope

Two pairs at Straloch on 16/6.

Mallard  Anas platyrhynchos

Pair at Straloch on 16/6. No broods seen this year. Single male regular on the curling pond.

Tufted Duck  Aythya fuligula

Male on Straloch on 16/6.

Goosander  Mergus merganser

Female with b/5 on the River Ardle, upstream of the field centre, on 14/6 (AW). Seven flew NW upstream over River Ardle on 13/6.

Red Grouse  Lagopus scotica

One observed (by students only) on walk up Ben Vrackie on 13/6.

Ptarmigan  Lagopus muta

One or more birds heard at the summit of Ben Vrackie in extremely low visibility on 13/6.

Sparrowhawk  Accipiter nisus

None seen this year.

Buzzard  Buteo buteo

Constant feature in Strathardle; 2-3 pairs between Enochdhu and south-east end of Glen Brerachan.

Kestrel  Falco tinninculus

One on Moulin Moor on 13/6 was the only bird seen.

Pheasant  Phasianus colchicus

Fairly common. Advertising call from 04:02 on 13/6, 04:11 on 15/6.

Moorhen  Gallinula chloropus

Pr with b/3 at Wellwood House, Pitlochry on 13/6. One calling at Straloch on 16/6.

Oystercatcher  Haematopus ostralegus

Birds heard regularly in Strathardle. Territorial pair near Tullochcurran on 14/6 and at Straloch on 16/6. Vocal throughout the night.

Lapwing  Vanellus vanellus

Only noted from the bus over Moulin Moor.

Woodcock  Scolopax rusticola

One to two roding along the main drive from dusk to dawn.

Curlew  Numenius arquata

Displaying birds at Straloch, east end of Glen Brerachan, and Tullochcurran on the Cateran trail to Kirkmichael. Observed in Glen Brerachan (while in transit in the bus). Single NW over Kindrogan Bridge on 14/6.

Common Sandpiper  Actitis hypoleucos

Pair with b/2 along River Ardle at the field centre. Heard at Loch a choire on Ben Vrackie on 13/6.

Black-headed Gull  Larus ridibundus

Regularly flying over Strathardle.

Common Gull  Larus canus

Regularly flying over Strathardle.

Herring Gull  Larus argentatus

One over Pitlochry on 17/6.

Feral Pigeon  Columba livia

Note at Enochdhu, Kirkmichael and Pitlochry.

Wood Pigeon  Columba palumbus

Fairly common. Singing from 03:50 on 13/6, 04:03 on 14/6, 04:02 on 16/6.

Collared Dove  Sreptopelia decaocto

Pair at Enochdhu. Fairly common in Pitlochry.

Cuckoo  Cuculus canorus

Singing males heard at the field centre, Straloch, Glen Brerachan, Kindrogan Hill, Tullochcurran and Moulin. Singing from 03:39 on 14/6, 03:58 on 15/6, 03:39 on 16/6.

Tawny Owl  Strix aluco

Male and female heard nightly around the field centre.

Swift  Apus apus

Two birds around the field centre daily; Pair at Straloch on 16/6. Also noted over Pitlochry.

Great Spotted Woodpecker  Dendrocopus major

More registrations this year than any other since 2003. Two adults and a juvenile at the graveyeard on 15/6. Noted at Enochdhu, Kindrogan Bridge, East Lodge, field centre, curling pond, E/W Balnald, Davan, West Lodge, Glen Brerachan, Straloch, and Cateran Trail to Kirkmichael. One drumming at Straloch on 16/6. Regular at peanut feeders around Kindrogan House.

Skylark  Alauda arvensis

Singing at the eastern end of Glen Brerachan on 16/6.

Sand Martin  Riparia riparia

Two around the field centre all week; one over grazing fields NW of field centre on 12/6; 3 in east end of Glen Brerachan on 16/6; min 5 at Straloch on 16/6; regular at Kindrogan Bridge.

Swallow  Hirundo rustica

Six AONs at the field centre; another nest in walled garden cottage; 20+ at Straloch on 16/6. Active from early morning, e.g. 0303h on 15/6.

House Martin  Delichon urbicum

Single nest at the field centre. Fairly common in Pitlochry and Kirkmichael; 8+ at Straloch on 16/6.

Tree Pipit  Anthus trivialis

Common in birch woodland in Glen Brerachan and Strathardle. Six singing males around the graveyard clearfell.

Meadow Pipit  Anthus pratensis

Common in Glen Brerachan and Ben Vrackie. Four singing male in restock on NE side of Kindrogan Hill. Several adults with food for young on Ben Vrackie; fledgling found at trackside.

Grey Wagtail  Motacilla cinerea

Scarce; single adults noted along the River Ardle.

Pied Wagtail  Motacilla alba

Pair collecting nest-lining material for nest in The Steading/Coppock Building; pair with food for young at Straloch on 16/6.

Dipper  Cinclus cinclus

Pair present in territory at Kindrogan Bridge; adult on the tiny burn at Moulin Inn 13/6; juvenile on the River Ardle on 15/6; adult carrying food to young in the nest at Kirkmichael.

Wren  Troglodytes troglodytes

As with 2010, less common than previous years - local population hit by second hard winter weather? None heard singing on high slopes of Ben Vrackie. Singing from 03:42 on 16/6.

Dunnock  Prunella modularis

More common than usual this year. Singing males at Kindrogan Bridge, Enochdhu, walled garden (2), Moulin-Ben Vrackie walk (3), and in Pitlochry gardens.

Robin  Erithacus rubecula

Several fledged broods around the field centre on 12/6. Singing from 03:18 on 13/6, 03:03 on 14/6, 03:12 on 15/6, 03:10 on 16/6.

Redstart  Phoenicurus phoenicurus

Two singing males in open birch slopes at the east end of Glen Brerachan on 16/6.

Whinchat  Saxicola rubetra

Two singing males at the east end of Glen Brerachan on 16/6.

Stonechat  Saxicola torquata

Male on lower slopes of Ben Vrackie on 13/6.

Wheatear  Oenanthe oenanthe

Singing male on Ben Vrackie on 13/6.

Ring Ouzel  Turdus torquatus

Singing male at usual site on Ben Vrackie 13/6.

Blackbird  Turdus merula

Common. Singing from 03:30 on 13/6, 03:21 on 14/6, 03:26 on 15/6, 03:24 on 16/6.

Song Thrush  Turdus philomelus

Common. Singing from 03:27 on 13/6, 03:08 on 14/6, 03:18 on 15/6, 03:14 on 16/6. Continuing to sing during light rain at 17:00 on 11/6.

Mistle Thrush  Turdus viscivorus

Fairly common. Most still feeding young in the nest. Pair with fledged juvenile at the curling pond on 13/6.

Grasshopper Warbler  Acrocephalus naevia

Singing male in rank heather on Moulin-Ben Vrackie trail on 13/6; around a marshy stream with very small willows.

Sedge Warbler  Acrocephalus schoenobaenus

Singing males at the curling pond and east end of Glen Brerachan in rushy field. No birds in juncus rush field near West Lodge beside Brerachan Water this year.

Whitethroat  Sylvia communis

Singing males holding territory at graveyard in clearfell, Kindrogan Bridge, Enochdhu, West Lodge/road end, east end of Glen Brerachin, Moulin-Ben Vrackie trail (2).

Garden Warbler  Sylvia borin

Singing males at the walled garden, front lawn, Kindrogan Bridge, curling pond and Tullochcurran. Pair carrying food for young at the walled garden on 11/6. Singing from 03:48 on 13/6, 03:26 on 14/6, 03:44 on 15/6, 03:29 on 16/6.

Blackcap  Sylvia atricapilla

Better numbers than usual with 12+ singing mm between Enochdhu-Kindrogan Field Centre-Straloch. Singing from 03:56 on 14/6; 03:58 on 15/6, 03:57 on 16/6.

Wood Warbler Phylloscopus sibilatrix

Singing male holding territory all week in open spruce forest (with larch/birch edge) at the East/West Balbald all week.

Chiffchaff  Phylloscopus collybita

Singing male present all week on the slope opposite the main entrance; singing from 03:43 on 14/6, 04:09 on 15/6, and 04:03 on 16/6.

Willow Warbler  Phylloscopus trochilus

Common this year with a minimum of 25 singing mm around the cleafell and restock on NE side of Kindrogan Hill; 15+ singing males between Kindrogan Bridge and West Lodge (including two at the walled garden). Singing from 03:34 on 14/6, 03:49 on 15/6, 03:38 on 16/6.

Goldcrest  Regulus regulus

Common in coniferous areas. Three fledged broods observed around the field centre on 11/6; 2 singing male at Straloch on 16/6. Singing from 03:23 on 14/6, 03:37 on 15/6, 03:33 on 16/6.

Spotted Flycatcher  Muscicapa striata

Pairs or singles noted at the field centre (3 territories), graveyard in clearfell, Enochdhu (2), East Lodge, curling pond (2), Balnald, Davan, West Lodge, East Lodge and eastern end of Glen Brerachan. Also noted at Moulin. Singing from 03:32 on 13/6, 03:48 on 14/6, 03:54 on 16/6.

Pied Flycatcher  Ficedula hypoleuca

No singing males located.

Long-tailed Tit  Aegithalos caudatus

Flock of 15 (mostly juveniles) at Kindrogan Bridge on 14/6; pair at the curling pond on 14/6; flock of 6+ at the curling pond on 15/6. Heard on the trail from Moulin-Ben Vrackie.

Coal Tit  Periparus ater

Common in coniferous zones. Fledged brood at East Lodge on 11/6.

Blue Tit  Cyanistes caeruleus

Common and using several nest boxes present. Pair with brood in artificial Swift box on Kindrogan House. Pair nesting in brickwork of walled garden. Several fledged broods around the field centre on 12/6. Also noted at feeders.

Great Tit  Parus major

Common. Pair with brood in artificial Swift box on Kindrogan House. Several fledged broods around the field centre on 12/6; juvenile at curling pond on 14/6. Also noted at feeders.

Treecreeper  Certhia familiaris

Still scarce this year. Two birds in Wellingtonia adjacent to the front lawn on 12/6; singing male in larch at Davan on 16/6; one at Straloch on 16/6.

Jay  Garrulus glandarius

One along the River Ardle at the walled garden on 12/6.

Magpie  Pica pica

Only seen at Kirkmichael and Pitlochry.  

Jackdaw  Corvus monedula                    

8+ prs nesting in chimneys in Kindrogan house and natural sites in the adjacent beech wood. Several fledglings in the beech wood 12/6. Common in Pitlochry and Kirkmichael.

Rook  Corvus frugilegus

Rookery in Glen Brerachan and common in pasture in the north-western end of Strathardle.

Carrion Crow  Corvus corone

Fairly common; broods noted around Straloch.

Raven  Corvus corax

Single and pairs overhead in Strathardle each day.

Starling  Sturnus vulgaris

Two juveniles at the curling pond on 14/6; pair with b/1 at E/W Balnald on 14/6; 8 juvs at Straloch on 16/6. More common in Kirkmichael and Pitlochry.

House Sparrow  Passer domesticus

Common in Kirkmichael and Pitlochry. Several pairs at Moulin Hotel/Inn. Male at Straloch on 16/6.

Chaffinch  Fringilla coelebs

Abundant; song reduced compared with previous visits at this time in June. Fledged bird fed by adults at walled garden on 12/6. Singing from 04:10 on 13/6, 03:54 on 14/6, 04:08 on 15/6, 03:59 on 16/6.

Greenfinch  Carduelis chloris

Two to three on field centre feeders throughout the week. Elsewhere, only noted in Pitlochry.

Goldfinch  Carduelis carduelis

Fairly common this year: pair at walled garden throughout the week, pair at East Lodge on 14/6.

Siskin  Carduelis spinus

Abundant this year. Minimum of 15 at feeders on 12/6 including a juvenile being fed by an adult. Small flocks encountered elsewhere including 20+ in graveyard clearfell.

Linnet  Carduelis cannabina

One in Glen Brerachan on 16/6.

Lesser Redpoll  Carduelis cabaret

Two over the curling pond on 13/6.

Crossbill  Loxia curvirostra

Four over the curling pond on 13/6; 3 over East Lodge on 15/6.

Bullfinch  Pyrrhula pyrrhula

Male at walled garden on 12/6; pair at the walled garden on 13/6; pair at The Steading on 13/6; heard on the trail from Moulin-Ben Vrackie on 13/6; pair at East Lodge on 14/6; male at The Steading on 14/6; heard on Cateran Trail to Kirkmichael on 14/6.

Reed Bunting  Emberiza schoeniclus

Singing males at Straloch and east end of Glen Brerachan on 16/6.




Kindrogan Library  Fraser Simpson Kindrogan House  Fraser Simpson Common Butterwort (Pinguicula vulgaris)  Fraser Simpson


Kindrogan Trip Reports:  2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 |

Location Guide to LocationsSummary 2005-2018

Home | Trip Reports | Recent Sightings | Blog | Photographs | Phonescoping | Sounds & Sonograms | Sketches | Patches | Butterflies & Dragonflies

About | A-Z Index | Search this Website | Links | Ayrshire Bird Report | Ayrshire Bird Race | Biking & Birding to Work | Scarlet Banded-Barbet | Blog Index | Cycling | Ambient

All photographs F. S. Simpson

Fraser's Birding Website

 Top of PageTrip ReportsHome