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Black Grouse Safari

Black Grouse Safari

Eagle Brae is lucky to have a black grouse lekking ground on the moorland just half a mile from the Eagle Brae site. At the right time of year, black grouse are one of the most reliable wildlife spectacles anywhere. Without fail they turn up at the break of dawn every morning from September until breeding time in the spring.

Black grouse males display to each other and to females throughout this nine month period in order to ascertain their rank by the time breeding season arrives. Males often confront each other, as well as offering flamboyant displays of tail fanning and to females whilst making strange bubbling noises.

This displays makes for very entertaining and fascinating viewing – black grouse are absolute show-offs!

Guests wishing to come on a black grouse safari will be collected from the log village in an all-terrain vehicle at first light and driven up to within around 100 yards of the Black grouse lek. Guests should wrap up warm and bring binoculars and cameras with high-powered zoom lenses. A good distance is kept so as not to disturb the birds, however they can become quite tolerant to viewers, particularly if they visit frequently over a short period.

There are only around 5000 male lekking birds left in the UK, and numbers are still falling. The Eagle Brae lek is an important species corridor for black grouse between the healthy population at the RSPB reserve in Corrimony and those to the north and east. As such, Eagle Brae has signed up to a government scheme to enhance the habitat for black grouse. We hope to ensure these magnificent birds remain at their lek above us for generations to come.