• Please be aware that avian influenza has been confirmed in the Western Isles. Great Skua and Gannet are the worst affected currently but a range of other bird species can be infected. Please avoid contact with dead birds, give sick and dying birds space, keep dogs on leads and report all instances of five or more dead birds of one species to Defra (03459 335577).

  • When here in the Outer Hebrides and looking at a bird, have you ever wondered how rare it is? The status of all species can vary enormously from island to island. How rare is Shoveler on Barra, has Stock Dove been seen on Harris, does Dotterel occur on Benbecula in the autumn, and how common is Blue Tit on North Uist? Well, fret no longer! The Status and Distribution of birds here on the Outer Hebrides has been completely updated and summarised for every species and each of the main islands and outliers. Available as an online resource at https://status.outerhebrides-birdreports.org/ or via our shop

    New - now available as an ebook


Eyes and Ears Everywhere
Western Isles / Outer Hebrides bird sightings for today, 21st June 2019. Updated throughout the day

Balranald, North Uist
A male ***Blyth's Reed Warbler*** has been singing and showing on and off by the visitor centre today. The Curlew Sandpiper was still nearby at Aird an Runair

Garrabost, Isle of Lewis
2 Swifts were seen over there today.

Ruhba Ardvule, South Uist
Counting period: 06:20 - 09:40
Weather: Wind WNW F4, mostly sunny. Temp 8-12C.

A 3+ hour seawatch this morning produced 3 Great Norther Divers (N), 44 Fulmars (N), 37 Manx Shearwaters (5S 32N), 192 Gannets (56S 136N), 9 Kittiwakes (2S 7N), 5 Little Terns (N), 1 Great Skua (S), 2 Guillemots (S), 16 Razorbills (5S 11N), 1 Puffin (N) and 116 auk sp (33S 83N).
Also present in the area were Tufted Duck 7, Cormorant 8, Arctic Tern 16, Sand Martin 8, Wheatear 1 and Pied Wagtail 3


Senior Member
Pied Wagtails nest in holes or crevices in a wide variety of sites but there can be few few records of a pair nesting in a whale skull (a pair are feeding young in a nest that is in the skull that lies in the small, enclosed, garden at the back of the Liniclate Community Library, Benbecula). Mary Harman wrote an article in the spring 1995 Museum nan Eilean Newsletter of the circumstances of the skull coming here. It was discovered on the shore at Griminish, Benbecula and staff at the local office of Scottish Natural Heritage managed to get it onto a trailer and take it to Liniclate. From its size (six feet long) it was obviously a whale of some kind and subsequent enquiries revealed it to have been that of a Bottlenose Whale (at the time there had been only four starndings of Bottlenose Whales in the Outer Hebrides since the British strandings recording scheme started in 1913). Also it transpired that it was almost certainly the skull of a whale that was buried at Griminish in 1981.