Cullaloe Wildlife Reserve

A nature reserve fashioned from a pair of former reservoirs in S Fife, Cullaloe Wildlife Reserve lies 1¼ miles (2 km) north of Aberdour and 3 miles (5 km) west northwest of Burntisland and is noted for its wildfowl and aquatic plants. One reservoir was completely drained in 1986 and the other partially drained in 1990, resulting in rapid colonisation by a mixture of willow scrub and marsh vegetation, providing a rich habitat for wildlife. Part of the reserve has been designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and supports several locally and nationally rare plants, including Mudwort (Limosella aquatica) and Water Sedge (Carex aquatilis).

The grassland adjacent to the loch is rich in wild flowers including Showy Orchids in the early summer and sweeps of Purple Knapweed later in the year. A small stand of Scots pine trees is preserved. The varied vegetation hosts a range of bird species, with Lapwings nesting on the open ground while Sedge Warbler and Whitethroat breed in the willows. In winter, Snipe feed in the rushes and there are numerous teal and smaller numbers of Great Crested Grebe, Mallard, Mute Swan, Pochard and Tufted Duck. The mud exposed by the changing water level attracts a range of waders including Black-Tailed Godwit and Spotted Redshank, which stop off at Cullaloe during their migration.

The reserve is jointly managed by the Scottish Wildlife Trust and Fife Council.

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