Because of its compact size, and amazing diversity of terrain and habitat over short distances travelled, Scotland plays host to a far greater number of bird species than would be found if travelling over the same distance in the USA, Australia, or continental Europe.

The diversity of terrain encountered while traversing the Ayrshire Coastal Path mirrors that of Scotland itself, and the sea and shore, the cliffs, the hills and moors, the rivers and estuaries, woodlands and open pastures all have their favoured bird species. The checklist at the end of the Guide Book lists 135 species, but this is by no means a final tally for keen birdwatchers.
































Similarly, for the amateur botanist there is a wide variety of flowers, trees and shrubs to be found in these diverse habitats; and geology enthusiasts will also enjoy the fine range of sedimentary, conglomerate, and igneous rock formations, and raised beaches, exposed by glaciation and incessant pounding of the seas over millennia.

Wild goats, roe deer, seals, porpoises, basking sharks, otters, foxes, white hares, stoats and weasels, will often be seen by quiet and observant walkers.

To see wildlife, avoid wearing bright garish colours, keep quiet and alert, and walk in small groups of 2-6 people.

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