Originally a large shallow lake that has gradually infilled since the last Ice Age, Tregaron or Cors Caron is today the best remaining example of a raised bog in England and Wales. Much of the bog is protected as a National Nature Reserve and it provides opportunities to study the development of raised bogs.
Around 170 bird species have been recorded here and the area is important for wintering waterfowl as well as breeding wetland birds. The habitats within the reserve range from still-growing raised bog in the centre to wet heath around the edges with rough grassland and patches of willow carr.
Breeding species include Common Teal, Water Rail, Common Snipe, Eurasian Curlew and Common Redshank amongst the wetland birds and Red Grouse, Tree Pipit, Grasshopper Warbler and Whinchat in the drier areas.
Passage periods bring waders including Whimbrel and Green Sandpiper. Greenland White-fronted Goose was once a regular wintering species but today there are rare, however, Whooper Swan and Eurasian Wigeon still occur and raptors at this season can include Common Buzzard, Hen Harrier, Eurasian Sparrowhawk and Merlin as well as Red Kite.
Birds you can see here include:
Grey Heron, Whooper Swan, Eurasian Wigeon, Common Teal, Mallard, Northern Pintail, Northern Shoveler, Common Goldeneye, Red Kite, Hen Harrier, Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Common Buzzard, Common Kestrel, Merlin, Peregrine Falcon, Red Grouse, Water Rail, Common Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Common Snipe, Whimbrel, Eurasian Curlew, Common Redshank, Green Sandpiper, Black-headed Gull, Barn Owl, Eurasian Skylark, Tree Pipit, Meadow Pipit, Grey Wagtail, Pied Wagtail, Common Dipper, Common Wren, Dunnock, Eurasian Robin, Eurasian Blackbird, Fieldfare, Song Thrush, Redwing, Common Redstart, Whinchat, Common Grasshopper Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Common Reed Warbler, Wood Warbler, Willow Warbler, European Pied Flycatcher, Willow Tit, Common Jay, Common Magpie, Carrion Crow, Northern Raven, Chaffinch, European Greenfinch, Eurasian Siskin, Lesser Redpoll, Reed Bunting
Otter Lutra lutra, Polecat Mustela putorius and Red Fox Vulpes vulpes hunt over the bog and, now scarce in Britain, the Water Vole Arvicola terrestris remains common. Reptiles such as Adder Vipera berus, Slow Worm Anguis fragilis and Common Lizard Lacerta vivipara are also common.
Botanically, bogs are of great interest and Tregaron is no exception. All three British species of sundew are found here as well as Cross-leaved Heath Erica tetralix, Crowberry Empetrum nigrum and Cranberry Vaccinium oxycoccos are common as are Bog Asphodel Narthecium ossifragus, Bog Rosemary Andromeda polifolia and Royal Fern Osmunda regalis.
Areas of Interest
A minor road leaves Tregaron village [Map]eastwards towards Llanwrtyd Wells through the nearby hills. Habitats in these hills include conifer plantations and streams in valleys with oakwoods on their slopes. Common Dipper and Grey Wagtail can be seen along these streams and Common Redstart, European Pied Flycatcher and Wood Warbler in the woods.
Access and Facilities
Tregaron Bog lies about 4km north of the village of Tregaron and reached on the B4343. There is a parking area on the left where a disused railway track leads northwards. Walk northwards from here to an observation tower overlooking the bog.
To explore the reserve further requires a permit from the warden at Minawel, Ffair Rhos, Pontrhydfendigaid, Ystrad Meurig, Dyfed, SY25 6BN.
Content and images originally posted by Steve
been two year in a row with my local bird club, both times giving excellent veiws of hen harrier (great veiws of male quite close the first year), kites, merlin, willow tit and whooper swan. dipped both years on SEO and barn owl, but theres always next time!
- hen harriers
- no hides YET!
another year, and another great day out. sadly the birds werent playing ball this year as we dipped on whooper swan, willow tit, merlin, and no owls. but we did still get great veiws of a ring-tail harrier from the new hide and from the bridge at dusk
- Great new hide and hen harriers!
- two people walking straight through the middle of the reserve