• Lapwings

    The Lapwing breeding season starts in early spring, through the winter we carry out extensive work across the wet grassland to make the habitat suitable for them. In the Autumn of 2021, a new fence was constructed around the breakwater field, overlooked by the Ynys-Feurig hide. This site was chosen for several reasons, firstly to try to relieve some pressure on our other fenced area at Lodge farm. Having all the breeding…

    • 9 Jun 2022
  • Spring Delights and arrivals

    Late Spring sees the reserve at one of its' best times.

    The woodland floor is covered in bluebells with other spring flowers such as primrose, wood anemone, lesser celandine, stichwort and wood sorrel.

    The trees are coming into leaf with a lovely fresh green and the air especially in the mornings is full of birdsong.

    So far on site we have willow warlbers, chiff-chaff, pied flycatchers and redstarts - enjoying the…

    • 29 Apr 2022
  • Peewits and Pipes

     A couple of years ago RSPB was able to purchase coastal fields bewteen Aberdyfi and Tywyn on the north side of the Dyfi estuary. Historically this area had been used by breeding waders such as lapwing however numbers had dwindled.  Last year our warden team built a temporary electric fence around one of the fields  to reduce predation on the small breeding wader population which had used this site for nesting. For the first…

    • 9 Mar 2022
  • Raptors delight

    Cold winter days and grey skies at Ynys-hir bcome alive with the flight of not one, but two Marsh harrier, seen regularly for the last week on the wetland areas. One vsitor even managed to catch one of them on camera eating a shelduck from Ynys Feurig hide.

    Hen harrier also almost a daily sighting as well as peregrine over the grassland/saltmarsh areas.

    On the pools and estuary, pintail, shoveller, wigeon, teal and great…

    • 24 Jan 2022
  • Winter

    The past weeks saw challenging and varied weather, from torrential downpours one minute, sunny spells another and some of the first heavy (ish) frosts keeping us on our toes.


    Some particularly frosty mornings over the past weeks


    Although it may seem like a long time until the reserve is filled with a plethora of species of both flora and fauna there is still a wide variety of wildlife to be seen and heard around the…

    • 13 Jan 2022
  • Dathlwch eich robin goch mewnol ar ein taith antur y Nadolig yma!

    (Cerdit Aardman/Netflix)

    Rydyn ni'n falch iawn o fod yn bartner gyda Netflix ac Aardman ar Robin Robin, sy’n stori gerddorol stop-symud newydd ar gyfer y Nadolig ac sy’n adrodd sut mae robin goch ifanc yn ceisio darganfod ei le yn y byd. Mae’n ymddangos am y tro cyntaf ar Netflix ar Tachwedd 24 – felly rhowch y dyddiad yn eich dyddiadur! 


    I ddathlu, rydyn ni’n eich gwahodd i ymuno â theithiau antur unigryw ar thema Robin Robin yma yn RSPB Ynys-hir  

    • 16 Nov 2021
  • Celebrate your inner Robin on our adventure trail this Christmas

    (Cerdit Aardman/Netflix)

    We’re delighted to be partnering with Netflix and Aardman on Robin Robin, a half-hour, stop-motion, festive story for the whole family, about a young robin trying to fit in. It’s debuting on Netflix on 24 November – get the date in your diary! 

    To celebrate, we’re inviting you to join exclusive Robin Robin-themed adventure trails right here at Ynys-hir this Christmas season. 

    Over 30…

    • 16 Nov 2021
  • Autumn Activity

    The team has expanded at Ynys-hir - welcome to Mark Carter our new Estate Worker joining us for 6 months over the Autumn/Winter period.

    Mark got stuck straight away with one of the big focuses over the past few weeks - ensuring the boundary fence lines around the site, in particular Coed Penryn Mawr, one of the larger sections of ancient woodland on the site, are in good condition to house a small number of cattle grazing…

    • 12 Nov 2021
  • Recent Sightings Spring 2021

    What a changeable Spring it has been. April as we know, was the driest and coldest on record for quite a few years with a frost nearly every night, and though the days were sunny the air did not warm up. This then has been followed by one of the wettest May's on record for Wales and it has only been in the last week that it feels like Summer might be here.

    So how has this affected the birds?

    Well to begin with the…

    • 3 Jun 2021
  • Nature's natural fireworks

    It seems fitting that this, the 50th Anniversary of RSPB Ynys-hir with it’s wonderful sessile oak woodlands, should be what is called a “mast” year for acorns. A year when trees produce an abundance of their “seeds”. This is the year when the oaks are quite literally showering us with their abundance.

    Acorns have been raining down on the woodland floor for the last few weeks at Ynys-hir and…

    • 27 Oct 2020
  • Autumn visitors begin to return

    As we enter the beginning of October there is a definate feel of the seasons turning. September turned out to be a beautiful month with warm sunny days bringing out lots of dragonflies and damselflies such as the black darter, southern hawker, common darter, golden ringed dragonfly,small red damselfly and common blue damselfly.

    The leaves are now beginning to turn their yellows and oranges and with a drop in temperature…

    • 4 Oct 2020
  • August Travel

    August can quite often be a time when it feels as if there is little to see out on  a walk around. However, it is a time for movement, of birds leaving us after a Spring and Summer breeding and raising young, a time of passage when birds which have breed further north use the area as a stop off on their way south, then a time of return, as birds which left us in the Spring to head north to their breeding grounds come back…

    • 27 Aug 2020
  • All about bracken

    Bracken covers much of the lower slopes of the Foel, and it provides nesting opportunities for birds such as nightjar, tree pipit and meadow pipit (the nests of which are parasitized by cuckoo). The caterpillars of the Dark green, and Small pearl bordered, fritillaries use bracken litter for hibernation and aestivation. Bracken can provide a protective nursery for young trees, and there are now hundreds of rowans on the…

    • 21 Jul 2020
  • We're Open

    We are open!! Along with many other RSPB reserves Ynys-hir has been able to re-open with the lifting of some Government restrictions, however not all staff are back in work and so as with many of our sites, we are on reduced hours. Open Wednesday through to Sunday 10am-4pm. The car park and reserve will be shut outside of these hours.

    Also our Welcome area is for the time being outside near the picnic benches, the Visitor…

    • 12 Jul 2020
  • News from y Foel

    Many of you will be familiar with a part of the reserve known as Y Foel. This is the hill that forms the stunning backdrop to the view from the picnic tables by the visitor centre. There are public footpaths up here and the walk is well worth it, not just for the stunning views over the main reserve, the Dyfi estuary and the southern mountains of Snowdonia, but alo for the wildlife.

    News from Neil, our Assistant Ward…

    • 22 Jun 2020
  • #BreakfastBirdWatch #BrecwastgwylioAdar

    As we all adjust to life at home during Covid-19 the RSPB is asking people to join in weekdays with #BreakfastBirdwatch #BrecwastGwylioAdar on it's various social media pages (follow us on Facebook RSPB Mid Wales and twitter @RSPBYnys_hir) from 8am-9am and share the birds you see in your gardens or out of your windows. The team at Ynys-hir have been doing that fron their various homes in Mid Wales. Here are some of the…

    • 7 Apr 2020
  • Greenland white fronted geese better protected when they next visit Wales

    New legislation, which comes into force today, gives greater protection to one of Wales’ rarest birds. RSPB Cymru Head of Species, Julian Hughes, and David Anning, Site Manager at RSPB Ynys-hir, explain why Greenland white-fronted geese need help.

    As the first swallows and warblers start to arrive in Wales, the longer days also trigger a restlessness in our winter migrants to head home.

    For Greenland white-fronted…

    • 1 Apr 2020
  • Ynys-hir and Covid-19

    Hello everyone, As I write this the country is under strict Government guidelines to try and prevent the spead of the Coronavrus and Covid-19, that includes all of us at the RSPB. Our reserves are now closed. We hope you are all staying safe and keeping well at home. Yet it is Spring and for nature lovers this is one of the most loveliest times of the year. If you can take a walk from home as your daily excercise have…

    • 31 Mar 2020
  • Treecreepesr singing

    Treecreepers singing

    “I can never remember the songs and calls” is what people often say when I’m talking about birds.

    Make it personal, I say, like the visitor on a dawn chorus walk a few years ago, listening to a wood warbler: “That sounds like a washing machine I once had, on its spin cycle”.

     “I can’t pick out one from the other”. Don’t worry about it - it’s more important to be out there…

    • 7 Feb 2020
  • Marian Mawr

    Of our five hides, Marian Mawr is the most accessible, and the most popular. Look North at this time of year and you might see barnacle geese feeding on the saltmarsh, or shelduck on the Dyfi. Look West to the freshwater pools, and you may see teal, redshank and little grebe. We want people to come here and be impressed with the wildlife spectacle – large numbers of ducks, waders and geese – but this is not always the…

    • 30 Jan 2020
  • How will you #BigGardenBirdWatch?

    This weekend (25th-27th January 2020) is the annual RSPB's Big Garden BirdWatch. Now in it's 41st year with over a million people taking part in it last year.

    The Big Garden Bird Watch gives an annual snapshot of the birds in our gardens and community greenspaces, there has been some striking changes over the years. While sightings of blue titst have increased by 68% since the first Birdwatch back in 1979, starling…

    • 23 Jan 2020
  • Frosty morning

    Cold first real heavy frost this morning saw ice spreading out on the pools.

    Highlights of recent days include the female smew on Marian Mawr.

    Geylag geese from saltings, usual flocks of teal and wigeon, female merlin on the saltmarsh. Red kites and buzzards.

    Sparrowhawk from the visitor centre and lesser spotted woodpecker in the woods behind the centre.

    Stunning views across the reserve in the winter sunlight.

    • 19 Jan 2020
  • January days

    Mistle thrush song

    The weather in January can make for a difficult month if you work outside a lot, and I have to make a real effort to find things that make me feel happy. When I arrive at the reserve in the mornings, I often hear a mistle thrush (MT) singing from the top of a huge Douglas fir in Cae’rberllan woods. For me, the MT’s song is not as clear or as varied as the song thrush’s, nor as tuneful and sweetly voiced…

    • 19 Jan 2020
  • Amazing Views

    Amazing views from Y Foel today.


    Checking the ponies each week is a personal victory for me, a small victory in the whole scheme of things, but a victory nonetheless. When I was four years old I was bitten on the face by a horse, (I was also, in another incident, licked by a giraffe, but that is another story) and I have been scared of horses ever since (but I have always loved giraffes). Checking the 7 Welsh mountain…

    • 13 Jan 2020
  • December Delights...

    This time of year most of the birding action is out on the estuary, our pools and the wet grassland and saltmarsh. Wrap up warm against the winds and a walk out to these areas can be a delight. So far this month visitors (and volunteers!) have been able to enjoy a variety of bitds including: flocks of wigeon and teal, lapwings, curlew, barncale geese, pintail, goosander, and osyster catchers. Other recent sightings i…

    • 9 Dec 2019