Knockshinnoch Lagoons

The open water, islands, marshland, reedbeds and willow carr make this reserve important for birdlife in the Nith Valley. Migrant birds favour the valley in the autumn. Plant and insect enthusiasts can enjoy the partially vegetated coal spoil heap in the main public area of the reserve.

There are hides and surfaced paths on this reserve.

Skylark © P N Watts

Why visit?

  • Migratory birds
  • Breeding & wintering birds
  • Wildflowers & insects
  • Mining history

Best time to visit?

  • Aug and Sep for migrating birds
  • Summer for wildflowers & insects
  • Autumn for fungi
  • All year round for history

Visit for:

  • Wildflowers
  • Birdwatching


The reserve is located next to New Cumnock. A car park is available on the B741, approximately 0.3 miles outside the town. The reserve can also be accessed via a lane off the A76 through the town: take the first right after the bridge over the river when approaching from the north.

Getting onto the reserve

The entrance from the car park is through a kissing gate under a stone arch. From the town, you can enter the reserve through a kissing gate at the foot of the lane. There are surfaced paths on this reserve.

Getting round this reserve

Visitors are asked to keep out of the wetlands for bird conservation and safety reasons.


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