Very few places in Scotland or even in Europe include the variety of flora and fauna that Rothiemurchus sustains.
This is one of the remaining strongholds of the charming but endangered Red Squirrels and you will probably be able to enjoy them collecting special squirrel food from their feeder beside the Boat House car parking area or scurrying around between trees. The Boat House’s grounds lead down to the banks of the River Spey, famed for its salmon and sea trout fishing – but sadly by the time they have swam all the way upstream from the sea they are desperate to spawn (lay eggs) not feed, so Rothiemurchus does not have prime fishing beats but you may see them in the river.
On firmer ground, the hills, naturally regenerated woodland and ancient forest that’s so crucial to the area’s environmental health provides shelter for many mammals like Red and Roe deer, Pine Martens, Badgers as well as Red Squirrels. You’re bound to spot all sorts of wild neighbours when you stay here, but we can also arrange close encounters for you, such as feeding our Red deer or trekking on Highland ponies, or visiting the Hairy Coos with the Rangers – although they are sometimes found in a field right next to the Boat House.
There’s an abundance of rare birdlife living in special habitats within Rothiemurchus including Crested Tits, Scottish Crossbill, Goldeneye duck and various members of the grouse family such as the largest Capercaillie and Ptarmigan hopping around the rocks high in the Cairngorms at about 3000ft. There are annual visitors such as Waxwing; House Martins and sometimes Swallows can be seen flying around the Boat House and nesting in the eaves or outhouses. Birds of prey are often seen here – Buzzards nest near the Boat House and Rothiemurchus and the Grant family have been recognised for their long connection with Osprey. Osprey photography sessions to be booked at Rothiemurchus. A pair of Golden eagles inhabit the high tops and peregrine and kestrel falcons can also be enjoyed.
There’s also a huge variety of plant life, but you don’t have to go further than the grounds to enjoy daffodils along the drive followed by bluebells and poppies on the bank at the end of the garden. Solomon’s seal and honeysuckle arrive with the warmer weather, while wildflowers including foxgloves, harebells, stitchwort and dog violets are rarely far from your sight here.