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 Aug 2010 Curlew Sandpiper View Image juvenile still at Harrapool - see the gallery for a superb image by Martin Benson.
31st Aug 2010 Cuckoo juvenile on a fence at Breakish (A&EH)
31st Aug 2010 Willow Warbler View Image 6 at Stein (C.Ellis)
30th Aug 2010 Whimbrel View Image singles reported at Rubh Idrigill from a kayak (Brian Drummond) and from a small boat off Strathaird Point (RMcM)
30th Aug 2010 Curlew Sandpiper View Image single in winter plumage at Harrapool (MB)
29th Aug 2010 Swallow Ringing there has been a Swallow ringing demonstration by Chris and Richard du Feu at the roost at Loch Cillchroisd, Kilbryde, on Friday and Sunday night. Some 3-400 birds were roosting and around 90 birds were caught, most of them juveniles. Other species caught were Sand martin and a White Wagtail. To-night's ringing session also included observations of Buzzard, Sparrowhawk, Merlin, Golden Eagle and Tawny Owl. (RMcM et al)
29th Aug 2010 Sabine's Gull report of two in outer Loch Bay, Waternish (Clive Ellis)
28th Aug 2010 Storm Petrel at least 3 on pelagic trip east of Staffin Island + 2 dark phase Arctic Skua and 12+ Great Skua (RMcM et al)- see Gallery.
28th Aug 2010 Northern Fulmar View Image there are several colour variations in Fulmars - often referred to as 'Blue morphs' - a bird east of Staffin Island showed features of the intermediate race (see Gallery). This bird was extremely aggressive towards the other 'normal' light coloured morphs.
28th Aug 2010 Long-tailed Skua a bird initially thought to be an Arctic Skua appears to have been a dark morph juvenile Long-tailed Skua, two miles east of Staffin Island on the pelagic (thanks to Lee Evans for the correction)
26th Aug 2010 Kingfisher report of a bird, possibly a juvenile, fishing in Portree Loch near Penifler before it flew up the Varragill (SWatt) - this is the first report since 2006.
25th Aug 2010 Eider raft of c100 birds - probably moulting - in Loch Ainort (ALaw)
24th Aug 2010 Knot single at the head of Loch Brittle (Jean Thomas)
24th Aug 2010 Buzzard lots of birds on the wing now with 7 to-gether above Teangue, Sleat (JP)
22nd Aug 2010 Arctic Skua View Image 3 at Neist Point - also 4 Red-throated Diver at Moonen Bay (RMcM)
22nd Aug 2010 Wheatear View Image good nos of leucorhoa moving through with 3 at Lower Milovaig (AS) and c10 at Neist Point (RMcM)
22nd Aug 2010 Linnet 4 in garden at Lower Milovaig (AS)
22nd Aug 2010 Sanderling View Image two at Ashaig (A&EH)
22nd Aug 2010 Hen Harrier View Image ringtail at Isleornsay, probably a migrant (RC)
21st Aug 2010 Bar-tailed Godwit View Image 13 at Ashaig (A&EH)
21st Aug 2010 Barn Owl View Image single reported at Drumfearn, Sleat, is the first for some time (RC)
20th Aug 2010 Knot 23 in Broadford Bay + 7 Whimbrel in the early evening (MB)
19th Aug 2010 Blackcap View Image still a pair at Kyleakin and a family of Spotted Flycatchers (LC)
19th Aug 2010 Hen Harrier View Image I reported previously on the progress of Hen Harriers in the breeding study in the north of the island. Unfortunately only 3 broods fledged with a total of 10 young. There were 7 other nests and all failed, with at least 6 failing as a result of fox predation mainly when the young are 2+ weeks old. Nest site cameras, part of the ongoing study, recorded three of the predations.(Bob)
19th Aug 2010 Bar-tailed Godwit View Image good count of 25 in Broadford Bay + 2 Knot (MB)
18th Aug 2010 Whooper Swan View Image another report of a single bird still on Loch a Ghlinne, Dalavil (previously reported on 29/5)(Claire Wylie) - further report that this bird was also seen on the 15th (Kathy Lindsley) which could mean we have two summering birds.
15th Aug 2010 Whooper Swan View Image Summering single still at Loch na Sguabaith, near Loch Slapin (RWare)
15th Aug 2010 Grasshopper Warbler a late reeling bird at the west end of Dalavil, Sleat (KLindsley)
13th Aug 2010 Water Rail at least two calling at Loch Suardal, Dunvegan, on SWT outing + 200 hirundines, mainly Swallows but some Sand Martins going to roost. Pick of the walk to Coral Beaches was several leucorhoa Wheatears, Great Skua and Red-throated Diver.
13th Aug 2010 Knot two in Broadford Bay + 26 Redshank (MB)
11th Aug 2010 Golden Eagle View Image There was favourable weather for breeding Golden Eagles on Skye in 2010, especially up to the end of June. Overall there were 29 occupied ranges and a total of 15 young fledged which included two sets of twins. This is around the longterm Skye average for productivity. (KC,KN)
11th Aug 2010 Wheatear View Image report of two in a garden at Harlosh - images of these would suggest they are of the race leucorhoa which breeds on Iceland and Greenland (T.Bird) aand which are clearly on passage.
10th Aug 2010 SWT Guided Walk just to say I am leading a walk at Claigan, Dunvegan on Friday 13th August commencing at 6.00pm. We will explore the Coral Beaches then come back at dusk to Loch Suardal to look for Water Rails and roosting Swallows. Everyone is welcome - meet at NG233538. (Bob)
9th Aug 2010 Redshank good count of 80+ at Ardnish, also 30 Ringed Plover (A&EH)
8th Aug 2010 Spotted Flycatcher View Image two adults and two juveniles at the Obbe, Kyleakin + a female Blackcap (LCard)
8th Aug 2010 Twite View Image flock of 100+ at Lower Milovaig (AS)
7th Aug 2010 Biking Birder 2010 Gary Prescott has a mission - to cycle to every RSPB and WWT reserve in the UK supporting these two charities and Asthma UK. Gary pased through Skye a few days ago saw a few birds and went to the Highland Games - you can catch up with him at his blog -
7th Aug 2010 Arctic Skua View Image single light-phase bird from the Brigadoon in Loch Portree (PE)
6th Aug 2010 Manx Shearwater View Image c500 off Waternish Point + 3 Great Skua and 3 Minke Whale off the Ascribs - all seen from Lochmaddy-Uig ferry (RMcM)
6th Aug 2010 Corncrake View Image what appears to be a juvenile Corncrake was an extremely interesting garden visitor at Merkadale, Carbost to-day - possibly grounded by the misty weather - see Gallery for a lovely image by David Hammond.
6th Aug 2010 Black-tailed Godwit View Image 2 at Broadford Bay + 3 Sanderling, a Knot, 160 Dunlin & 85 Ringed Plover (MB)
6th Aug 2010 Redshank good count of 50 Redshank in Balmeanach Bay, Braes & 3 Great Skua in Narrows of Raasay (WM)
3rd Aug 2010 Canada Goose View Image 3 at Loch Caroy with Greylags (MSellers)- just the possibility that two of these birds were this year's young and that a Canada Goose may have inter-bred with a Greylag.
2nd Aug 2010 Sooty Shearwater View Image excellent record of three moving south at Neist Point (MPerry)
2nd Aug 2010 Turnstone 18 on Glen Brittle beach + 6 Dunlin (JT)
1st Aug 2010 Whimbrel View Image 9 at Harrapool + 2 Black-tailed Godwit (MB)
1st Aug 2010 Grasshopper Warbler Still 3 reeling birds at Tote (CHawley)
1st Aug 2010 Puffin c20 off the Ascribs (seen from Lochmaddy Ferry) including a few young birds - in general terms auks have had another very bad year (RMcM)

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