The reservoirs have a long-standing reputation as one of the key birdwatching sites in South Wales. In fact they are mentioned in the first edition of John Gooders classic book "Where to Watch Birds" which listed the top birding sites throughout Britain. In 1972 Lisvane Reservoir was declared a Site of Special Scientific Interest for its birds, including overwintering mallard, teal, tufted duck, pochard, coot, occasional divers, grebes and many passage migrants.

Winter birds

During the winter, the reservoirs are home to many species of water birds. On almost any visit it is possible to see tufted duck, pochard, mallard, coot, moorhen, great crested grebe, little grebe, cormorant, mute swan, black-headed gull, common gull, lesser black-backed gull, herring gull, and grey wagtail.

Other species that are regularly seen include grey heron, canada goose, wigeon, teal, shoveler, goldeneye, sparrowhawk, buzzard, greater black-backed gull, tawny owl, kingfisher, green woodpecker, great spotted woodpecker, pied wagtail, fieldfare, redwing, and raven.

Passage Migrants

Common passage migrants include: common sandpiper, all four species of hirundine, grey wagtails and wheatear. Rarer passage migrants include: green sandpiper, redshank, greenshank, common tern, arctic tern, black tern, & sedge warbler.

Summer birds

During the summer months many species migrate to Britain to breed. In addition to the species listed above the following can be seen on almost any visit: sand martin, swallow, house martin, swift, whitethroat, blackcap, chiffchaff, willow warbler. Many of our commoner resident birds such as the blue tit, great tit, carrion crow, chaffinch, greenfinch, goldfinch etc. breed in the woods and hedges surrounding the reservoirs. In recent years great crested grebes and mute swans have also nested successfully.