Wildlife & Nature

Darroch Wids @ Coynachie

A beautiful native tree forest with 6 circular waymarked walks.

As part of an innovative project, Darroch Wids Coynachie was created by a consortium of Scottish Forestry Alliance partners included British Petroleum BP; Scottish Forestry Commission FCS; Royal Society of Protection of Birds RSPB; and Woodland Trust Scotland. The project, planting native trees on hitherto farmland, commenced circa 2002.

Local communities of Gartly and Huntly along with school pupils from Gartly Primary and the secondary school, The Gordon Schools Huntly, were widely engaged with the project and participating planting trees and sowing the wild flower meadow.

Six waymarked walks were created and sign posted to encourage the local community and visitors to enjoy the new plantation; watch the
young saplings mature and see the changing bio diversification of hill farmland into a native forest.

After 14 years, the young bare root saplings have matured into beautiful trees, with branches reaching for the sky. A mixed forest of Rowan; Ash; Alder; Aspen; Oak; Juniper; Silver Birch and Scots Pine flourish on the hillsides and valley.  The Flooers O’ the Wids wildflower meadow planted by local school children, with wildflowers such as foxglove; wood anemone and red campion make a beautiful addition to the already well established wild primroses; Broom and Gorse (with its delicious scent of coconut!).

Coynachie Guest House is located at the heart of Darroch Wids Coynachie, so it is very easy to explore and enjoy this young native forest, just walk out of the front door and onto one of the 6 waymarked routes along the hillsides and valley floor, please click on the link below to view the variety of routes – a perfect way to relax and unwind from Business or touring.

Darroch Wids @ Coynachie Map

Wildcats – Our native Highland Tiger!

Coynachie Guest House is located in Strathbogie (area around the Bogie River) and one of the areas in the Highlands where our native Wildcat still has a foothold.  Currently there is a survey taking place in the surrounding forests to try and identify numbers of this shy native Tiger!  To find out more please visit the Scottish wild cat action organisation.

Red Squirrel

Smaller and redder than the Grey Squirrel, the native Red Squirrel can be seen in the locality and with changing land management resulting in an increase of bio diversification of the land its hoped that the number of this species will also increase.

How you can help – To report a sighting of red squirrel please follow the link below

Pine Martin

This distinctive mammal is shy and fast, it is here, not so good news for our Hens!  Images of Scottish Pine Marten


There are several badger sets in and around Coynachie and there is a high probability that you will see one or more badgers when out walking around Darroch Wids.


Both Red Deer and Roe Deer roam wild in this area.  There is quite a number of the smaller Roe Deer around Coynachie Valley, drive slowly along the final 2 miles of the road to Coynachie Guest House and look out for passing wild Roe Deer which live in the forest and graze in the pastures surrounding Darroch Wids.

Bird Species

The landscape around Coynachie Guest House provides varied habitats for numerous birds, with pine forest; mixed forest at Darroch Wids Coynachie and open farmland and hedging in which to live.

Some species reside here all year round and some are seasonal visitors species include Buzzard; Goshawk; Peregrine Falcon; Kestrel; Barn Owl; Tawny Owl; Chaffinch; Bullfinch; Gold Finch; Green Finch; Blue Tit; Great Tit; Long Tailed Tit; Sisken; Sky lark; Woodpecker; Dunnock; House sparrow;Tree Creeper; Pied Wagtail; Grey Wagtail; Oyster Catcher; Cookoo; Pheasants; Mallard; Grey Heron; Jackdaws; Blackbirds; Thrush; Redpoll; Wren; Fieldfare and Robin.


In the Coynachie Valley we are surrounded by burns (streams/tributaries)The burn of Glack-en-tore; Lag Burn; Priest Water, all feed into the River Bogie.  In the past the Lag Burn provided perfect spawning ground for Salmon and Brown Trout. The burns are monitored for fish activity and water quality and although difficult to see they do contain a health population of young trout and salmon.

Coynachie Guest House is a 4 Star Scottish Tourist Board Guest House


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