• 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

Local Rarity 9th December 2018


Eyes and Ears Everywhere
Outer Hebrides / Western Isles bird sightings for today, 9th December 2018. Updated throughout the day

Loch na Tiumpan, Isle of Lewis
A Slavonian Grebe was on the loch today

Sound of Taransay, Isle of Harris
The 4 Surf Scoters - 3 drakes and 1 female where there again today along with 325 Common Scoters

Sound of Harris
162 Great Northern Divers, 32 Red-throated Divers and 17 Slavonian Grebes were seen from the ferry

Coot Loch, Benbecula
A pair of Pintail were seen on the loch

Loch Stilligarry, South Uist
A Little Egret was on the loch this morning

Grogarry Lodge, South Uist
2 Brambling were amongst a mixed flock of Chaffinch and Reed Bunting

Loch Bornish, South Uist
76 Whooper Swans and a female type Scaup were on the loch

Ruhba Ardvule, South Uist
Counting period: 08:30 - 10:45
Weather: Wind N-NNW F4, 4/8 cloud some bright sunny spells. Temp 6C.

A 2+ hour seawatch this morning produced 4 Eider (2S 2N), 2 Red-throated Divers (S), 4 Gannets (S), 70 Shag (5S 65N) and 1 Cormorant.
Also present in the area were Greylag Goose 15, Wigeon 51, Pintail 1, Teal 18, Tufted Duck 14, Long-tailed Duck 2, Red-breasted Merganser 2, Great Northern Diver 2, Cormorant 16, Hen Harrier 1 [adult female], Common Buzzard 1, Lapwing 53, Golden Plover 1, Ringed Plover 72, Bar-tailed Godwit 25, Dunlin 29, Purple Sandpiper 9, Hooded Crow 12 and Raven 2
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OH Bird Recorder
Excellent weather for the monthly Wetland Bird Survey (WeBS) today - calm and sunny, though feeling chilly at only around 3C.

Loch Bee
430 Wigeon, not a terrifically high count for this time of year.
Mute Swan numbers also seemed quite low there too at only 236 (we've had counts of 500/600 in previous years during the winter).
Two white-tailed Eagles
A single Scaup
2 Long-tailed Duck were unusual to see
2 Moorhens - I don't recall seeing these here in the almost eight years of doing counts around Loch Bee/The Range
A very large flock of c230 Twite and c80 Skylarks was good to see
Other species: Mallard, Teal, Common Gull, Lapwing, Great Black-backed Gull, Redshank, Red-breasted Merganser, Herring Gull, Golden Plover, Snipe, Cormorant, Buzzard, Curlew, Greylag Geese, Goldeneye, Tufted Duck, Whooper Swan, Greenshank, Shelduck, Grey Heron, Barnacle Geese, Meadow Pipit, Redwing, Pied Wagtail and a few others...

Most worryingly no Greenland White-fronted Geese in their normal wintering area

1 Otter

South Ford
95 Shelduck, one of our highest counts for the South Ford
Only 57 Grey Plover
27 Knot
Other species: Greenshank, Redshank, Grey Heron, Teal, Dunlin, Oystercatchers, Black-headed Gull, Herring Gull, Greylag Geese, Lapwing, Curlew,

1 Otter