Places to see birds

Pensychnant Conservation Centre and Nature Reserve, Conwy

Pensychnant Conservation Centre and Nature Reserve, Conwy
Male Pied flycatcher - L Bimson

The Pensychnant conservation centre and reserve is a special place, a little gem of leafy tranquillity in which to listen, observe, enjoy and appreciate nature.
Nestlings within the outstanding natural beauty of the Sychnant Pass, it is one of the best wildlife sites in the region.

The Pensychnant Conservation Centre hosts displays, lectures and other events about wildlife, its threats and conservation, with a focus on old-fashioned natural history and wildlife recording.

The varied wildlife habitats at Pensychnant (A Site of Special Scientific Interest; (SSSI) includes traditionally grazed Ffridd. A diverse mixture of grass and heathland with bracken, scrub, hawthorn and gorse, rock exposures and may also include mires, streams and standing water.

Just above the house, is Home Wood, the woodland is a relic of the primaeval Welsh oakwoods which once would have covered Snowdonia. Plants such as the wood anemones and bluebells thrive here. It is home to native trees such as Oak, rowan, birch and holly. Other trees such as the Scots and Corsican pines, sycamore, lime and beech have been planted as new woodland.
These Welsh oak woods are important for summer migrants; here you will find the distinctively marked pied flycatchers, redstart, wood warbler, chiff chaff, willow warbler, and occasional crossbill as well as the home birds' nuthatch, treecreeper, linnet, chaffinch, goldfinch, siskin, woodpecker, goldcrest, jay and titmice. Decaying pine boles are important habitat for invertebrates and the nuthatch and woodpeckers which feed on them. One of the dead conifers is apparently a favourite perch for visiting Cuckoos and the ivy clad trees are ideal places for a daytime roost for the Tawny owl.

Additionally the charity has planted about 2200 locally-native trees on abandoned pastures to create a further 25 acres of woodland. This is this is habitat for whitethroats and stonechats, with a good population of summer warblers.

The aim of pensyncnant is to maintain the mix of ancient semi-natural and Victorian habitats which supports such diverse wildlife.

If you are able, I would recommend you take the path from the main rd -round the corner from the reserve up to Mynydd y Dref -"Mountain of the Town" or Conwy Mountain for some incredible views of Anglesey, Snowdonia and the Irish Sea. At the summit of Conwy Mountain are the Neolithic Hut Circles and the remains of the Iron Age hill fort of Castell Caer Seion. On your walk you may happen upon raven, chough, buzzard, meadow pipits and stonechats perched on the gorse.

And don't forget RSPB Conwy is only 15 minutes away!

Toilets on site.
Tea/coffee making facilities.
Woodland path no wheelchair access.
Path up conwy mountain - : Moderate.some ups and downs; terrain and footpaths variable in quality: boots preferable.