August 2006

We took most of the month “off” to visit the British Birdwatching Fair (BBF) at Rutland, and to get some big outdoor jobs done on our new peedie barn self-catering, such as installing the solar panel and septic tank.

We are taking bookings shortly for April 2007 onwards.

It was great to meet so many people at the BBF, and for the many folk who participated in our Highland Park quiz, the correct answer to the question “How many species of seabirds breed in Orkney?” was 21 (source Seabird 2000 survey), as follows: fulmar; storm petrel; gannet; cormorant; shag; Arctic skua; bonxie; black-headed gull; common gull; LBB gull; herring gull; GBB gull; kittiwake; Sandwich tern; common tern; Arctic tern; little tern; guillemot; razorbill; tystie; and puffin.

April Highlights 2006

April has been scudding by with one day good and one day bad.

Summer visitors now starting to arrive with swallow, wheatear, Sandwich tern, bonxies, whimbrel and chiffchaff all back by 22/4.

The first set of twins born into the herd for 8 years arrived on 15/4!

Sadly a North Atlantic white-sided dolphin was also washed up in perfect condition earlier in the month – a very handsome girl.

Meanwhile back at the seabird cliffs a few guillemots and razorbills were venturing back at Marwick on the 30/4 and puffins on South Ronaldsay on the same day.