• 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
Outer Hebrides / Western Isles bird sightings for today, 28th December 2018. Updated throughout the day

Sound of Taransay, Isle of Harris
2 drakes and a female Surf Scoter were seen in the sound today

Carinish, North Uist
A Jack Snipe was seen the today

Ruhba Ardvule, South Uist
Counting period: 08:35 - 10:45
Weather: Wind W veering WNW F5-6, 8/8 cloud thinning to 4/4, an isolated shower. Temp 9C.

A 2+ hour seawatch this morning produced 12 Eider (S), 4 Long-tailed Duck (S), 4 Red-throated Divers (S), 13 Gannets (3S 10N), 50 Shag (2S 48N), 6 Kittiwakes (5S 1N), 3 Common Gulls (S) and 6 auk sp (S).
Also present in the area were Greylag Goose 5, Wigeon 94, Teal 6, Tufted Duck 10, Great Northern Diver 3, Cormorant 19, White-tailed Eagle 1, Common Buzzard 1, Purple Sandpiper 25, Rock Dove 13, Raven 3 and Meadow Pipit 1


Senior Member
Among the species seen this morning on a visit to the Rubh' Arnal area, North Uist were 29 pale-bellied Brent Geese (all adults), a good count of 52 Greenfinches at the fish dump and 27 Goldfinches. One of the Brent Geese was seen to be colour-ringed - yellow N on left leg and blue Z on right. This bird was ringed in Iceland on 11th May 2017, seen on four occasions at Rubh' Arnal between 4th December 2017 and 15th March 2018, back in Iceland on 12th May and lastly seen by Bruce at Eoligarry, Barra on 20th November.

At Balemore the single pale-bellied Brent Goose was seen again in the Barnacle flock as well as the bird with the white head and neck.


OH Bird Recorder
A run up to the north of South Uist today. Three White-tailed Eagles were seen putting all the birds up at Loch Bee (2 adults and a juvenile). There must have been 300+ Lapwings up in the air - not usually this many recorded on the monthly WeBS counts! Sadly no sign of any Greenland White-fronts anywhere around Loch Bee though I've received a report that birds have been heard but not seen. Will have to investigate further.

By Hebridean Jewellery there were quite a few waders roosting up at high tide including, c70 Grey Plover plus c300 Dunlin, and Oystercatchers.

At Northbay there must have been 200 Bar-tailed Godwits roosting on the beach there at high tide.

At Ardivachar a Pied Wagtail was there - i'm amazed there weren't more birds as there were plenty of flies around the masses of rotting seaweed.

At Aird-mhicheil there was a colour-ringed Oystercatcher, managed to get photographs. The Darvic was the same colour and letter combination as the one seen at Kilpheder by John Kemp on the 23rd December though John's bird seems to have had a different colour combination of rings on the other leg as the bird seen today. It is believed that these are Icelandic ringed birds and we're awaiting confirmation from the project co-ordinator.

I walked back to Askernish from Kildonan along the beach and it was fairly quiet though there were around 20 Golden Plover.

WTE.jpg 20181228-IN8A8973Oyc.jpg
White-tailed Eagle and Oystercatcher with colour-rings