Skye Birds - A Birding Guide to the Isle of Skye
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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 Peter Stronach (  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 www.highlandbirds.scot. 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' - http://blx1.bto.org/birdtrack.  Records sent to us are also submitted to Birdtrack.

Date Species Image Details
31st May 2011 Gannet reports of dead birds coming from Broadford Airstrip and Harrapool (EH) and also inland at Glenfinnan - also a live bird on the pavement at Mallaig (SMacD) - along with other recent reports this suggests that either the birds are having problems feeding or with the weather, or both.
31st May 2011 Iceland Gull View Image 2nd summer bird at Uig Harbour yesterday and to-day(D.Darrell-Lambert)(see Gallery)
31st May 2011 Black-headed Bunting male in a garden at Mallaig early this morning (Marion Affleck per SMacD)- see Gallery for an image taken through the window - this illustrates the importance of taking pictures of rare birds.
30th May 2011 Bee Eater still at Ord until 1000 when seen flying north over Loch Slapin (P.Stanfield, RMcM) (see Gallery)
30th May 2011 Whimbrel View Image single straggler at Loch Pooltiel (D.Darrell-Lambert)
30th May 2011 Glaucous Gull View Image 1st summer bird at Camas Mor, Borneskitaig (R&W Seymour)
30th May 2011 Whooper Swan View Image single straggler on Loch Mealt (R&W Seymour)
30th May 2011 Tufted Duck View Image good count of 18 on Loch Mealt (R&W Seymour)
29th May 2011 Bee Eater still around Ord between 1000-1200 (P&M Garrity)
29th May 2011 Sanderling View Image two at Tokavaig, Sleat ((P&M Garrity)
29th May 2011 Whooper Swan View Image single straggler at Loch Suardal, Dunvegan (D.Bentall)
28th May 2011 Bee Eater still at Ord - seen by Janet Hey at 0800 and 0900.
28th May 2011 Siskin amongst growing concerns that the weather is having a heavy toll on many species Brian Neath reports large numbers of Siskins including recently fledged young coming to his feeders at Carr Brae. Also similar reports from Dunvegan (Rob Wright)
27th May 2011 Bee Eater bird still at Ord and has been seen by several local people (E.Finney, Jan Young, Janet Hey et al)
27th May 2011 Spotted Flycatcher View Image report from Treaslane Beag (DMacDonald)
27th May 2011 Long-tailed Skua three adults with 2 Pomarine Skuas and 25+ Arctic Skuas 3 miles east of Staffin Bay from Hebridean Whale Cruises boat late morning. (per Birdguides)
27th May 2011 Ringed Plover View Image 16 probable late migrants on a ploughed field at Trumpan (S.Parlane)
27th May 2011 Arctic Skua View Image dark morph bird at Coral Beach, Dunvegan (Al Stewart)
26th May 2011 Bee Eater Though elusive, bird still in the Ord area (E.Finney)
26th May 2011 Sanderling View Image 4 at Camus a Mhor, Balmeanach, Braes + a Merlin (WM)
26th May 2011 Manx Shearwater View Image with the strong northerlies c50 in the Narrows of Raasay (WM)
26th May 2011 Turnstone 11 at Traigh + 2 Sanderling (SMacD)
26th May 2011 Storm Petrel single Stormie + 4 Bonxies feeding behind a trawler 3 miles off Arisaig (Ronnie Dyer)
26th May 2011 Swift single heading north at Gedintailor, Braes (Al Stewart)
25th May 2011 Bee Eater reported from Ord yesterday -seen mid morning and then again in the early evening by Eric Finney - this is only the third record for Skye and luckily Eric was able to take an image through his window - see Gallery.
25th May 2011 Arctic Skua View Image an Arctic Skua was grounded in a garden in Mallaig (SMacD)on the same day a bird appeared to come from inland at Loch Long (Paul Speak)
24th May 2011 Magpie single with corvids at Glendale (AS)- birds turn up on Skye every few years but it is 20 years since one was recorded in Duirinish.
24th May 2011 Chiffchaff one singing at Inverarish, Rassay (DCJ)
24th May 2011 Arctic Skua View Image dark morph bird overland and heading south on the Portree side of the 'hill road' from Struan (PE)
24th May 2011 Storm Petrel single off Mallaig Harbour + Bonxie and Arctic Skua (SMacD)
24th May 2011 Sanderling View Image now 10 at Traigh + 3 Whimbrel (SMacD)
24th May 2011 Barn Owl View Image single reported from Portnalong (JThomas)
24th May 2011 Pomarine Skua View Image from MV 'The Lord of the Glens' in Sound of Sleat off Loch Hourn, three 'Poms' + 3 Arctic Skuas, 200+ Manx Shearwater, c100 Kittiwake, 50 Arctic Tern (P.Exley)
24th May 2011 Storm Petrel at least 5 from MV 'The Lord of the Glens' in Sound of Sleat off Loch Hourn, and a single at Kylerhea (P.Exley)
24th May 2011 Pomarine Skua View Image again from MV 'The Lord of the Glens' in Loch Alsh opposite Balmacara - three 'Poms', a dark morph Arctic Skua and a Bonxie - a 'Pom' later flew north over the Lochalsh Hotel (P.Exley)
23rd May 2011 Great Skua View Image single in Kyleakin opposite the Community Hall (A&EH) - no doubt induced by the weather.
23rd May 2011 Gannet lots fishing close inshore including 40-50 at the entrance to Mallaig Harbour (SMacD) - bird also grounded in the storm at Torrin (see Gallery)
23rd May 2011 Sanderling View Image two at Traigh + 70 Dunlin & 10 Turnstone (SMacD)
23rd May 2011 Arctic Skua View Image single dark morph bird off Mallaig Harbour (SMacD)
22nd May 2011 Stonechat View Image very few reports suggesting the last winter has taken its toll - pair with fledged young at Greshornish (RMcM)
22nd May 2011 Gannet single bird several miles inland flirting with Edinbane Windfarm in strong north/westerlies (RMcM)
22nd May 2011 Storm Petrel single in Narrows of Raasay where there was a steady southerly passage of Manx Shearwaters, Fulmars and Auks (P.Exley from mv The Lord of the Glens)
19th May 2011 Kittiwake c24 at Kyleside, Kyleakin (A&EH)
19th May 2011 Whimbrel View Image still 4 at Traigh with 3 Sanderling on the shore (SMacD)
18th May 2011 Long-tailed Skua 3 off Strathaird Point in westerly gale (RMcM)
18th May 2011 Pomarine Skua View Image 6 off Strathaird Point in a westerly gale + single dark morph Arctic Skua & a Bonxie (RMcM) Also a single Pom outside Mallaig Harbour in the evening (SMacD)
18th May 2011 Whimbrel View Image 7 at Traigh near Mallaig (SMacD)
17th May 2011 Records of Rare Birds May is often a time for unusual records and it is worthwhile explaining the processes involved in dealing with rarities. Species such as Black Stork or Broad-billed Sandpiper, both recorded in 2010, go to the British Birds Rarities Committee. Species such as Black Kite and Rough-legged Buzzard, also reported in 2010, require a description to the Scottish Birds Record Committee. Species such as Nuthatch, because of their local rarity, are dealt with by the Highland Records Committee. Other species may be rare on Skye such as Crested Tit or Wryneck, which may not require a written description to any committee but which may need a few questions to be answered. In every case it is important to take notes at the time and if at all possible take even a poor photograph. Where descriptions are asked for and not submitted the reports will remain as such, and not become official records. Whilst this all may seem a bit bureaucratic, please dont be sensitive if you are asked a few questions following reports of rare or unusual species. The rules apply to everyone, both novices and experienced birders, and I am always happy to help and give advice.(Bob)
17th May 2011 Sand Martin View Image good counts with 30 at Duntulm Loch and 50 at Loch Suardal on the 18th (STurnbull)
16th May 2011 Corncrake View Image there are currently reports from around 11 locations mainly in Trotternish and Waternish of about 17-18 calling birds - remember to let Shelagh Parlane know of any calling birds on 07771545409 or notify this site.
16th May 2011 Great Northern Diver View Image still small numbers around the coast with reports from Braes (NSearle), Armadale (MB), Loch Caroy (MS) and Loch Slapin (RMcM)- most birds are in stunning summer plumage - see Gallery for recent images.
15th May 2011 Arctic Skua View Image single dark phase bird off Armadale Pier + a Sandwich Tern (MB, RMcM)
15th May 2011 Siskin T989707 this is a Siskin originally ringed in Shropshire and which has now returned to a garden in Hallin, Waternish for its 4th summer (A.Mearns)
14th May 2011 Pomarine Skua View Image a single off Arisaig mid morning heading north (Ronnie Dyer); then in mid-afternoon 10 (a group of 9 & a single) from the Armadale - Mallaig ferry heading north up the Sound of Sleat (SMacD)
14th May 2011 Garden Warbler a rarity in the west there is a singing bird at Carr Brae - according to Brian Neath the area is at its best right now with Tree Pipits, Wheatears, Whinchats, Whitethroats, Wood Warblers, Blackcaps and a staggering 40 or so singing Willow Warblers between Dornie and the View Point.
12th May 2011 Blackcap View Image at least three singing birds at Uig (RMcM) + a single at Ord (A.Lyle)and another single at Kilmarie, Loch Slapin (RMcM)
12th May 2011 Pomarine Skua View Image single flying north off Arisaig (Ronnie Dyer)
12th May 2011 Curlew Sandpiper View Image juvenile still at Harrapool + 10 Knot and 7 Bar-tailed Godwit (MB)
12th May 2011 Long-eared Owl View Image successful nesting at Arisaig with three large chicks (per SMacD)
12th May 2011 Chiffchaff singing birds reported from Uig (RMcM) and Talisker (Michelle McKenzie)
12th May 2011 Short-eared owl View Image very few reports but a single in the evening at Achachork, Portree (C.Lomas)
12th May 2011 Spotted Flycatcher View Image first report of the year from Rubha Mor, Plockton (BN)
11th May 2011 Manx Shearwater View Image 6-700 off Strathaird point + c300 Kittiwake (RMcM)
11th May 2011 Sanderling View Image 2 in Broadford Bay at Harrapool + 5 Knot, 94 Dunlin, 66 Ringed Plover & the Curlew Sandpiper still (MB)
10th May 2011 Curlew Sandpiper View Image single still at Harrapool + 11 Knot (see Gallery) (RMcM)
10th May 2011 Arctic Tern View Image arriving back in good numbers at nesting islands at Traigh (SMacD)
10th May 2011 Sanderling View Image 3 at Traigh, + 65 Dunlin, 30 Ringed Plover, 7 Turnstone and a Whimbrel (SMacD)
9th May 2011 Curlew Sandpiper View Image Single still at Harrapool (MB)
9th May 2011 Grey Plover View Image Two at Harrapool (EH)
8th May 2011 Little Stint View Image report of two Little Stint near Loch Fada - spring records of this species are extremely rare (IN)
8th May 2011 Twite View Image one of four birds seen at Peinachorran on 30th April was colour ringed (WM) and we have now established it was caught and ringed last winter at Montrose Basin (all reports of colour ringed birds are welcome)
8th May 2011 Curlew Sandpiper View Image single at Harrapool with 79 Dunlin (MB)
8th May 2011 Goosander View Image two pairs on the upper River Snizort including a nest with eggs (SBungard)
7th May 2011 Goosander View Image 9 in Loch Dunvegan by the village, 5males and 4 females (INorris)
7th May 2011 Blackcap View Image still arriving with singing birds at Portree and Waterloo (MB, RMcM)
6th May 2011 BTO Atlas - breeding records The 4 year Atlas project is reaching a conclusion. Whilst we will cover all our quota of tetrads (with a little help from some friends), it is extremely important to upgrade breeding status across the whole area. Records can be submitted to the Bird Atlas site direct as 'Roving Records'. Many thanks to all involved to keep up the good work until the end of July. (Bob)
6th May 2011 Ring Ousel female on the Quirang (R.Howells)
5th May 2011 Shoveler 4 (2 pairs)at Glas Eilean, Waterloo (RMcM)
5th May 2011 Tree Pipit View Image still thin on the ground with a report from Kylerhea (Pat Howells)
5th May 2011 Sanderling View Image single on Traigh beach + 35 Dunlin and 25 Ringed Plover (SMacD)
5th May 2011 Sanderling View Image single on Traigh beach + 35 Dunlin and 25 Ringed Plover (SMacD)
4th May 2011 Nuthatch Following the report from Glenelg, by a remarkable coincidence a bird has returned to Brian Neath's garden at Carr Brae - last seen there on 31.12.10
4th May 2011 'Comic' Tern first report from Loch Treaslane (MMacDonald)
3rd May 2011 Nuthatch recent reports of a bird visiting two different garden feeding stations at Glenelg - perhaps the Carr Brae bird? (per PJones)
3rd May 2011 Wryneck Report of a single bird near Point of Sleat (E+H Millman)
2nd May 2011 Whimbrel View Image 3 in Tarskavaig Bay + 8 Great Northern Divers (RMcM)
2nd May 2011 Blackcap View Image singing male in Coille Dalavill (LStanden)
2nd May 2011 Goosander View Image pair on the Snizort at the old bridge on the 'hill road' (PE)
1st May 2011 Whimbrel View Image 3 at the head of Loch Slapin at high tide (see Gallery) (RMcM)

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