• 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 such instances to Defra (03459 335577). RSPB and Nature Scot are working together to collate all records of birds with suspected avian influenza on the islands. If you see a suspected case of avian influenza please email a record to robyn.stewart@rspb.org.uk, including date, species (if known) and location.
  • 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, 1st January, 2019. Updated throughout the day

Reef, Isle of Lewis
A Little Egret was seen there this morning

Balranald North Uist
The Cackling Goose, small Canada Goose and circa 10 Snow Buntings there today.

Rubh' Arnal, North Uist
A juvenile Glaucous Gull, 20 Snow Buntings and 19 Brent Geese were in the area

Aileodair, North Uist
The drake *American Wigeon* was again on the loch

Balivanich, Benbecula
The female type Velvet Scoter was again offshore

Coot Loch, Benbecula
The drake *Ring-necked Duck* and a pair of Pintail were still on the loch today

Cleit, Isle of Barra
An adult *White-billed Diver* was there today in quite rough seas.


OH Bird Recorder
As is our annual tradition @MisterT and I headed out at first light to spend the day birding and working on our 2019 Western Isles year list. We went as far south as Pollachar and as far north as Stoneybridge.

Over the course of the day we found 58 species - and improvement on the same date over the last three years.

Bird of the day was probably the Rook that was still at Kilpheder.
Other species seen included: a flock of 30 Twite on the Askernish machair, Goldeneye on Loch Hallan, a good selection of waders (Oystercatcher, Ringed Plover, Curlew, Lapwing, Golden Plover, Sanderling, Dunlin, Redshank, Turnstone, Bar-tailed Godwits) along the beaches. A Greenshank was found at Loch nan Ràmh, near Daliburgh. Hen Harrier, Peregrine, Merlin and Kestrel were birds of prey seen, there seemed to be quite a few Reed Buntings around in various places. A raft of c30 Long-tailed Duck were offshore at Frobost with similar numbers present further north at Kildonan. 2 Gannets were offshore near Orasay.

Will head out again tomorrow and hopefully venture further north.