Within the gardens and woodland surrounding the Green Park Hotel, visitors can glimpse red squirrel moving effortlessly through the trees and a variety of local bird life. The hotel's lochside location makes it ideal for spotting herons, swans and other waterfowl - as well as salmon and trout jumping out of the water. There are various theories put forward as to why the fish leap out of the water, including the thought that they do it just to annoy the nearby anglers.
Here in Highland Perthshire native woodlands, rivers, lochs and heather clad hills provide perfect habitats for some of Scotland’s most treasured wildlife.
For quiet and observant visitors native pine woodlands can provide sightings of red squirrels and roe deer. More elusive inhabitants include the fearsome capercaillie, and the very shy pine martin.
Majestic red deer roam the hills that are also home to mountain hares, and the noisy black grouse. Along the riverbanks tracks indicate the presence of otters. Dippers and Wagtails search for insects, while each summer the Salmon battle their way upstream to spawn.
Buzzards can often be seen soaring over the fields and moorlands hunting for prey. The mewing call of these can usually be heard long before the birds themselves are spotted.
In spring the Birch, Larch and Oak woodlands are blanketed with yellow Primroses and Wood Anemones. Summer sees the Glens burst into life as the grassy slopes become covered with wildflowers. Observant visitors will find the delicate purple-yellow mountain pansy, and the pink-white blooms of the common spotted orchid.
In autumn the turning leaves and heather clad hills provide a splendid palate of reds, yellows and golds.
Red Squirrels are one of the rarest and most threatened of Britain’s wild creatures. The Green Park Hotel is located on the eastern extremity of FaskallyForest, on the banks of Loch Faskally, allowing us to play our small part in helping to protect them.
We have installed a number of Red Squirrel feeders in our grounds, where if you are quiet and lucky, you might be able to see them coming to feed.
Red Squirrels eat a whole range of food from seeds from trees such as Pine and Larch. They open up the pinecones to get at the seed, you will often see evidence of these opened up pinecones as you walk along our Highland Perthshire forest paths.
Red Squirrels breed from January until September, with up two litters a year. Pregnancy lasts between 36 to 42 days. Litters are often three in number, being born blind, deaf and hairless. It takes them four weeks to grow their fur, open their eyes and be able to hear properly. After ten weeks they are fully weaned and ready to explore the world. Red Squirrels can live up to 6 years.
Scotland is the home to the majority of Britain’s Red Squirrel population.
For more information about Red Squirrels in Perthshire go to www.PerthKinrossRedSquirrels.co.uk
If guests would like to feed the ducks on Loch Faskally or at the nearby boating station, then please ask your breakfast waiter or waitress, and we will supply you with some left over bread.