Spring, summer, autumn or winter, they all have something different to offer at Ynys-hir:
Winter is the time when Ynys-hir offers you the only chance in Wales and England of seeing Greenland white fronted geese. Pretty barnacle geese are also here along with large flocks of lapwing, and lots of different types of ducks. The reserve looks stunning when frosty or snowy, especially on a bright, sunny day.
Spring brings with it the return of very special migrants to Ynys-hir. Some woodland bird species numbers are in dramatic decline but our ancient sessile oak woodland offers them a perfect habitat. All the way from Africa come pied flycatchers and wood warblers to join with the permanent residents in singing and nest building.
Summertime and the reserve is beautiful in many different shades of green. Reed warblers and sedge warblers are un-missable with their loud calls around the pools. Spotted flycatchers and swallows are busy feeding their broods. Spend some time in an estuary hide and you may see an osprey fishing. A sunny summer’s day is the time to see the many different types of dragonfly and damselfly that live here.
In autumn the scenery changes again with a feast of orange and brown colours. The woods come alive with many different types of fungi. You can find yourself in the middle of large flocks of tits and finches accompanied by treecreepers. Hen harriers return to the reserve after spending the summer on the hills.
What is your favourite time of year to visit RSPB Ynys-hir?
Summer for me. The woods are so totally alive and the hills too. Memories of not just birds but bats streaming out at dusk and being sat on a bench enjoying the warm sunshine with a lesser pecker feeding 15 feet above my head.
What a lovely and lucky experience to even see a lesser spotted woodpecker in amongst the summer foliage!