Hopetoun House birdfair soars to new heights

Just oneof the many exhibitors' stalls at Birdfair.
Just oneof the many exhibitors' stalls at Birdfair.
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Thousands of wildlife and nature lovers flocked to the third annual Scottish Birdfair at the weekend making it the biggest and best yet.

Held in the stunning grounds of Hopetoun House, near Edinburgh, the event has become a must for anyone with a love of Scotland’s birds, animals and wild places.

Organised by RSPB Scotland, the Scottish Birdfair attracted more than 5,500 wildlife enthusiasts and families who enjoyed a fun day out in the spring sunshine. Many visitors travelled from across the UK and from further afield to find out more about the country’s unique natural environment.

The event’s guided walks, foraging workshops and bird ringing demonstrations proved popular and hundreds of children had an opportunity to try their hand at a pond dipping, bush crafts and owl pellet dissection.

More than 100 wildlife-related exhibiting stands featured at the event, ranging from state-of-the-art optics to the latest in wildlife technology, holidays, books and artwork.

All the proceeds raised over the weekend will go towards conserving and protecting Scottish wildlife including the kittiwake, a Scottish seabird experiencing steep declines.

RSPB Scotland spokeswoman Catriona Webster said: “This year’s Scottish Birdfair was our best yet with thousands turning out over the weekend to enjoy a great range walks, talks and activities in the beautiful grounds at Hopetoun House.

“The Scottish Birdfair provides an ideal opportunity for people to learn more about nature and it was particularly great to see so many children enjoying the outdoors and having the opportunity to come face to face with our natural world, whether that was through releasing a ringed bird back to the wild, exploring pond life or learning how to build a home for nature.”