Reptiles and Amphibians
( 3 Articles )
Arran has been an island for longer than the British mainland, and the absence of a number of species from the local fauna reflects this. Grass snakes are one such notable absence, and frogs and newts are likely to be relatively recent introductions. However, the mild climate favours cold blooded creatures, and some species, such as the adder, have flourished in a habitat lacking in competitive predators such as foxes, stoats and weasels.
Moorland habitats are particularly important for reptiles and amphibians, with ample upland bog and lochains for common toads, and an abundance of field voles and insect prey for adders. On warm summer days common lizards and adders can be found basking in the sun in south facing glens such as Glen Rosa.
( 6 Articles )
Seals, Porpoise, Basking Sharks and occasionally Dolphins and Minke Whales can all be seen in the sea round Arran. The Clyde was once well stocked with fish, but sadly stocks have declined alarmingly over recent decades. An Arran organisation, the Community of Arran Seabed Trust (COAST) is at the forefront of trying to reverse this and more information can be found at www.arrancoast.com
If you should find a stranded marine animal (dead or alive), please follow this link for what to do.
( 6 Articles )
The species of animals found on Arran are distinctive more for what is missing than what is present. For example there are no Foxes, Weasels or Moles, although the role of the ground predator is partly filled by Mink and feral Cats.
The absence of some species is thought to result from the separation of Arran from the mainland after the last ice age, before many species had re-established.
This separation from the mainland has greatly benefited some of Arran’s mammals as they have not faced competition from introduced species such as the Grey Squirrel.
Mammals found on Arran include Red Squirrel, Otters, Red Deer, Badgers, Bats (particularly Brown Long Eared Bats)