Pink-footed geese are gathering in their tens of thousands at Montrose Basin Wildlife Reserve in Angus.
Scottish Wildlife Trust and ANGUSalive Rangers estimated more than 50,000 geese were present on the Basin this morning.
Numbers are still building as the birds undertake their annual migration from Iceland and Greenland.
Most of the birds at Montrose are passing through, resting and refuelling before leaving for wetlands on the east coast of England.
The Scottish Wildlife Trust is hosting a number of exciting events this autumn to help people see these spectacular birds and learn more about the wildlife that lives on the Basin.
Anna Cowie, the Trust’s Montrose Basin Ranger said: “Our best estimate at the moment is that there are more than 50,000 pink-footed geese.
“We’ve been trying to get an accurate count for the last few days but the weather has been against us.
“On Monday the dense early morning fog meant we could hardly see the Basin!”
Snow in Iceland has pushed the birds south faster than usual, which means that peaks numbers of geese may fall short of the records seen in recent years.
Anna added: “There has been an early start to the pink-footed geese migration this year, which seems to be due to snow in Iceland pushing the birds south quicker than usual.
“We’re not sure what effect this will have on the peak numbers this year, but it’s possible high numbers early in the season means we won’t see the record counts of 80-90,000 of previous years.”
Enjoy Autumn at Montrose Basin
- People’s Postcode Lottery Goose Breakfast: Sunday 6 October, 6:30 – 9:30 am; tickets £5 – £10.
- Autumn wildlife wander: Wednesday 9 October and 16 October, 10:30 am – 12:00 noon; tickets £2-6.
- Pink sunset: Sunday 13 October 4:45 – 7:15 pm; tickets £3-6.
- Halloween trail: Saturday 26 October – Sunday 3 November, 11 am – 4 pm; admission charges apply.
- Starry night: Sunday 10 November, 7 – 8:30 pm, tickets £3 – £6.
To book tickets for autumn events at Montrose Basin please click here.