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
31st Dec 2006 Hen Harrier View Image a ringtail seen heading across Broadford Bay towards Ardnish (MB)
30th Dec 2006 Great Skua View Image winter records are extremely rare but the overnight gales probably brought a single bird to Camas Malag, Loch Slapin (JJones)
29th Dec 2006 Knot winter records are always scarce so a single at Harrapool is of interest - also 50+ Dunlin (MB)
29th Dec 2006 Little Grebe View Image report from Dave Monks of a single on Loch Cill Chriosd, Strathaird, yet another indicator of our mild weather as this species normally moves to the sea lochs in winter.
26th Dec 2006 Slavonian Grebe pair at Meanish Pier, Loch Pooltiel - according to Andy Stables, a small population winters in the north-west of Skye - it has previously been thought that the main wintering area was the greater Broadford Bay area and along the sheltered east side of Skye.
25th Dec 2006 Slavonian Grebe single at Loch Pooltiel near Glendale (AStables) - records for this species from this part of Skye are extremely rare.
25th Dec 2006 Lesser Black-backed Gull View Image this species is assumed to winter further south but 3 were identified during the BTO NEWS survey in Loch Pooltiel, perhaps a further reflection on our changing weather patterns (AStables)
24th Dec 2006 Purple Sandpiper View Image the island of Pabay is rarely visited in winter and John Phillips took his kayak round to try and complete a BTO NEWS survey - he was rewarded with a count of 52 purps - the largest count ever recorded in Skye.
20th Dec 2006 Iceland Gull View Image at least one first winter bird still showing at Portree - on the shore below the big car park.
19th Dec 2006 Iceland Gull View Image 2nd winter bird found by Brian Neath in a field at An Dubh Aird, Plockton - all on its own.
18th Dec 2006 Sperm Whale we do not normally record cetaceans but the presence of a Sperm Whale at the head of Loch Ainort is extremely unusual. This species is normally found well offshore in deeper water where they feed on squid. Unfortunately it appears to be in poor condition and according to experts it is unlikely to be able to navigate itself from the loch and will eventually beach.
18th Dec 2006 Red-throated Diver View Image count of 19 between Camas na Sgianadin and the head of Loch Ainort
18th Dec 2006 Slavonian Grebe 5 in Loch Ainort off Luib
18th Dec 2006 Skylark View Image this species is normally absent in Dec/Jan so a single at Elgol may reflect the mild weather.
17th Dec 2006 Slavonian Grebe good count of 9 between Camas na Sgianadin & Broadford Bay as part of WeBS count
17th Dec 2006 Greenshank count of 7 during WeBS of Greater Broadford Bay, all between Harrapool and Ashaig.
17th Dec 2006 Bottlenose Dolphin probably the highlight of the monthly Broadford Bay WeBS count - a small pod of 4 tail slapping, spy-hopping and generally putting on a fantastic display (A&EH, JP & RMcM)
16th Dec 2006 Peregrine View Image report of a bird at Claigan, Dunvegan (Marjorie MacInnes)
16th Dec 2006 Merlin View Image single flying over Loch Cill Chriosd, Strathaird (Dave Monks)
15th Dec 2006 Leachs Petrel another dead bird found by Elaine Horner at Kyleakin not far from the Skye Bridge (see photo)
13th Dec 2006 Blackcap View Image report of male Blackcap at Glendale which had been around from the 9th.
12th Dec 2006 Iceland Gull View Image report from Jeff Lawson of two ist winter birds at Portree Harbour - with one probably present since last month.
11th Dec 2006 Little Auk two seen at Kylerhea, getting some respite from the continuing gales.
9th Dec 2006 Blackcap View Image female feeding in garden at Elgol (K.Fullarton)
9th Dec 2006 Black-throated Diver View Image count of 8 near the head of Loch Slapin - numbers have been low so far this winter.
9th Dec 2006 Turnstone some big counts with c60 at Ardnish (A&EH) and 43 at the head of Loch Slapin.
8th Dec 2006 Little Auk report from Tim Dix of two from the Uig-Lochmaddy ferry in Loch Snizort - also 6 adult Puffins which is unusual at this time.
7th Dec 2006 Leachs Petrel report from Tim Dix of three seen in Loch Snizort from the Uig-Lochmaddy ferry - though this is the first report from our area there has been a big movement of this species on the west coast during the last week as a result of the westerly gales.
6th Dec 2006 Kittiwake large numbers of Gulls between Plockton and Kishorn with at least 200 Kittiwake (BN)
6th Dec 2006 Fieldfare View Image scarce in Lochalsh this autumn there were 8 with Redwing in Balmacara (BN)
5th Dec 2006 Little Auk a single only, off Strathaird Point.
5th Dec 2006 Twite View Image most birds have left for the winter so a single near Strathaird Point was interesting.
5th Dec 2006 Blackcap View Image female feeding on nuts in garden Glen Brittle (KCrane)
5th Dec 2006 Petrel sp.
5th Dec 2006 Petrel sp. report from Callum MacDonald of a probable Leachs Petrel found injured in the Broadford Medical Centre Car Park - unfortunately the bird died but from his description it looks like a Leachs - part of the big influx to the west coast of UK in the last few days.
4th Dec 2006 Storm Petrel gales and storms normally produce a few surprises so a Storm Petrel at Ardelve, Lochalsh, was a surprise for Brian Neath - Storm Petrels are normally in the Meditteranean and off the coast of Africa at this time.
4th Dec 2006 Kittiwake a record at Ardelve, Lochalsh is also unusual at this time (B.Neath)
3rd Dec 2006 Shelduck first back from annual migration/moult at Broadford Bay (MB)
3rd Dec 2006 Lapwing though only small numbers, a few unseasonal reports from Harrapool, Skullamus and Ardnish (MB, A&EH)
3rd Dec 2006 Dunlin View Image wintering count of 53 at Harrapool/Waterloo - also 3 Knot & 21 Turnstone (MB)
2nd Dec 2006 Blackcap View Image report from Hugh & Margaret Scott of a pair in their garden at Kyleakin
2nd Dec 2006 Moorhen single at Loch Cill Chriosd, Strathaird.(JJones)
1st Dec 2006 Knot two in Broadford Bay which is unusual in winter - also 11 Bar-Tailed Godwit (MB)
1st Dec 2006 Blackcap View Image male on nuts at Drynoch Lodge (Deirdre Peppe)

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