Skye Birds - A Birding Guide to the Isle of Skye

Bird sightings on the Island of Skye and the neighbouring area

The objective of this page is to keep everyone, locals and visitors, up to date with what birds are about. It is therefore dependent on everyone contacting me as quickly as possible to ensure I can update the site so that others might benefit from the observations. In the case of rarer species details would also be passed on the Highland Recorder John Poyner (  who may require a full description before the record was accepted. This website will very much be locally focused but some records will be included in the SOC Highland website and may also reach national sites.  We have complete discretion as to what information is added to these pages and will try to avoid any details which might reveal breeding sites of vulnerable species.  It is impossible to record everything reported and for the more regularly observed species, we would encourage the use of 'Birdtrack' -  Records sent to us are also submitted to Birdtrack.

Date Species Image Details
30th May 2005 Linnet Report from Syd Johnson of a pair at Lonmore, Dunvegan - Linnets remain pretty scarce on Skye.
30th May 2005 Turtle Dove Report from David Bentley of a Turtle Dove along with Collared Doves in a garden at Kyleakin. There seems to be a report of this species at this time most years although it remains a scarce vagrant.
29th May 2005 Black Redstart View Image Report from Richard Thomson of an adult male at Ord on Sleat - this is only the 2nd known record for Skye.
28th May 2005 Peregrine View Image There have been a few reports in the Broadford area, presumably of a non-breeding bird. One was seen early in the morning at Ardnish taking a Greenshank.
25th May 2005 Visit to Soay The local SWT group visited the island of Soay to-day. The weather was poor so conditions were not best for recording. Species recorded included 3/4 pairs of Red throated Diver, a pair of prospecting Bonxies, ChiffChaff, Tree Pipit, Bullfinch and Greenshank. Great Northern Diver was recorded offshore though the highlight was perhaps 2 separate Basking Shark sightings on the return journey.
24th May 2005 Corncrake View Image report of calling bird on Raasay - the first report on the island for many years.
24th May 2005 Great Skua View Image Report from Stephen Bungard of pair of Bonxies defending territory in the Raasay area. This could be the first recorded breeding for the area from a species which is continuing to expand its range.
23rd May 2005 Short Eared Owl View Image report of a single bird in forestry at Greshornish.
22nd May 2005 Ring Ouzel View Image Breeding records for this declining species are scarce on Skye so a report from Martin and Carol Benson of a pair feeding a brood of young on Blaven is encouraging. Coincidentally on the same day there is a report from Brian Neath of 5 singing males on the Sgurr a Choire Garbh ridge in Kintail with another singing bird nearby.
22nd May 2005 Spotted Flycatcher View Image record from Carr Brae is the first report for the area, closely followed on the 23rd by the first report from Skye at Isle Ornsay.
20th May 2005 Moorhen Report of a single bird on Loch Suardal - one of the few breeding sites on Skye.
20th May 2005 Whooper Swan View Image report of a single straggler on Loch Suardal.
20th May 2005 Whimbrel View Image a single report from Lochalsh at Kirkton Bay. Given this report from Brian Neath it is tempting to suggest that the main Whimbrel passage is up the west coast through Skye and birds miss out the Lochalsh sea lochs. In favourable conditions birds have been seen spiralling at the head of Loch Slapin and are thought to have headed north through the Cuillin.
19th May 2005 Black throated Diver View Image 3 in Nostie Bay Lochalsh.
18th May 2005 Canada Goose View Image report from Peter Elford of a Canada Goose at the seal colony at Dunvegan - this is a pretty unusual record for Skye with only about 2 other known reports.
17th May 2005 Short Eared Owl View Image further report from the Ullinish area, one of the few places where birds are seen with any regularity.
14th May 2005 "Eagles" For obvious reasons we avoid reporting Eagle sightings which might increase the risk of disturbance to nest sites at what is an extremely sensitive time. Nevertheless it has to be recognised that most visitors to Skye want to see both Golden and White-tailed Eagles and the usual advice is to keep an eye out anywhere. We have had wonderful weather recently and the McLean family, based at Dunvegan, during a single week, saw Eagles on vitually every day, including interraction between the two species, and at one time watched 4 White tailed Eagles soaring and displaying in a non-breeding area for a lengthy period. Whilst our weather conditions may not always be ideal for watching thermalling birds, on good days the simple advice is to find a suitable spot, probably a lay-by, and systematically search the sky - it inevitably brings its rewards!
13th May 2005 Whooper Swan View Image report of single bird on the Storr Lochs.
12th May 2005 Whimbrel View Image report of 2 at Camas Mor, Bornesketaig.
10th May 2005 Dotterel View Image report from Ken Crane of 2 males and a single female near the Am Mam pass between the top of Glen Brittle and Sligachan. There is no breeding record for Skye although birds have been recorded annually in recent years.
9th May 2005 Bar Tailed Godwit View Image Group of 10 on 'stopover' at Isle Ornsay, Sleat.
9th May 2005 Whimbrel View Image Group of 4 passage birds at Loch Caroy.
9th May 2005 Canada Goose View Image report of 4 at Loch Brittle.
8th May 2005 Great Skua View Image single off Ardnish, Broadford.
8th May 2005 Common Whitethroat View Image 1st reports for Skye from Glasnakille, then Isle Ornsay on the 9th.
8th May 2005 Whooper Swan View Image Still 2 stragglers at Loch Suardal.
7th May 2005 Great Skua View Image Count of 3 off Strathaird Point - heading north.
7th May 2005 Whimbrel View Image Group of 9 rested at Strathaird Point before continuing on their journey north. Later in the day there was a group of 5 at high tide at the head of Loch Slapin. Migration for the 'May Fowl' is clearly in full swing.
5th May 2005 White tailed Eagle View Image 'Blue' tagged bird spotted at Loch Cill Chriosd in Strathaird - this is possibly 'Blue T' a 2002 bird which has been seen fairly regularly in the area and likes to put in an occasional appearance for our visitors.
5th May 2005 Whimbrel View Image Still passage going through with 2 at Camas Malag, Torrin.
5th May 2005 Sea Watch with the blustery westerly winds there was a good inshore movement of seabirds at Strathaird Point including 'hundreds' of Puffins, Fulmars, Kittiwakes, Guillemots and lesser numbers of Razorbills, Gannets and Manx Shearwater. Unfortunately just a few 'Bonxies' and none of the rarer Skuas.
5th May 2005 Twite View Image Report of a flock of 50+ in the playing fields at Kyleakin.
4th May 2005 Common Whitethroat View Image Brian Neath reports 2 singing birds from the Inverinate end of Carr Brae - an early date.
4th May 2005 Grasshopper Warbler Two separate reeling birds in forestry plantations in Waternish.
4th May 2005 Long tailed Skua reliable report from local fisherman of a bird off Soay. Early May is the time to pick up unusual Skuas off the coast of Skye and there is a regular passage of Long Tails and Pomarines.
2nd May 2005 Sedge Warbler View Image first report of a singing bird at Ullinish.
2nd May 2005 Whooper Swan View Image report of a straggler on Loch Fada.
2nd May 2005 Garden Warbler report of singing bird at Carr Brae, Lochalsh.
1st May 2005 Short Eared Owl View Image Another report from the Ullinish area.

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