Birdwatching - The Carrick Roads

Carrick Roads from Trelissick
Carrick Roads from Trelissick

The Carrick Roads is the name given to the upper reaches of a drowned river valley just north-east of Falmouth and Penryn. Comprising part of the Fal Estuary, so deep that huge tankers weighing in excess of 150,000 tonnes can navigate it.The Carrick Roads are characterised by numerous narrow creeks and inlets, which often have a wooded shoreline and are renowned as a haven for wildlife, especially aquatic birds.

One of the largest flocks of Black-Necked Grebes in the UK lives here, while other regularly-sighted species include Red and Black-Throated and Great Northern Divers, Red-Necked and Slavonian Grebes, Black Guillemots and Long-Tailed Ducks. Native species include Shags, Cormorants, Curlews, Redshank, Oystercatcher, Dunlin and Black-Tailed Godwit while past rarities include Osprey, Honey Buzzard and Laughing Gull.

The Carrick Roads do not lend themselves to easy bird watching, and access points are few and far between. Probably the best place to start is Loe Beach, near Feock, followed by Turnaware Point, where you can get closer views of the Grebes who like to feed on the east side.