Our holiday in Dumfries and Galloway continued with a visit to the Mersehead RSPB (Royal Society for the Protection of Birds) reserve. It's a working farm that is managed with wildlife in mind. Livestock include this fine herd of Belted Galloway cattle
It's always a beautiful reserve to visit. The visitor is greeted by a beautiful array of flowers that should offer a banquet for pollinating insects, though there weren't very many pollinating insects the day we visited
There are paths all around the reserve, offering lovely views of the surrounding countryside
and the coastline
There are lots of bird hides around the reserve, allowing great views of the flocks of geese that gather here in winter.
and decorated with beautiful artworks showing some of the species you can see here
Summer lacks the magnificent large flocks of wintering birds but there's still plenty to see! We were entertained by this Rook family at their nestLinnets, Goldfinches, Stonechats and Tree Sparrows and heard lots of Skylarks.
We were delighted to see this Emperor Dragonfly,
The reserve also has a wildlife garden that includes demonstrations of ideas for how to help nature in your own garden, including this Rubble Retreat, which is full of cosy little hideaways for insects, reptiles and amphibians
and this Bug Hotel