Recent Sightings

Bird and other Natural History Sightings in the Outer Hebrides.

Please note that the sightings below do not reflect the variety of species you can see in a normal day out birding or wildlife watchinthg. These reports concentrate on more unusual species or significant counts or movements.

To report sightings please contact Steve at: steveduffield70@gmail.com

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17th September:

Lewis: A Buff-breasted Sandpiper flew in off the sea at the Butt with 9 Golden Plover; also 8 Sooty Shearwaters off-shore.

North Uist: A Sedge Warbler and Chiffchaff are in Carinish this morning.

South Uist: A Garden Warbler, 4 Common Redpolls, 2 Lesser Redpolls were in South Glendale today; plus 125 Pink-footed Geese flew south-east over there. A Red-breasted Flycatcher was seen at North Loch Eynort today.

Barra: Barred Warbler and Pied Flycatcher in Ardmhor plantation this morning. 48 Black-throated Divers were seen from the ferry between Ardmhor and Eriskay today.

Insects: Moth trapping at North Loch Eynort last night produced 52 moths / 17 species which included 19 Grey Pine Carpets, 3 Red-green Carpets, 4 Pink-barred Sallow, 2 Red-line Quaker (one of the form rufa), a Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing as well as 3 Pandemis cerasana and a Caloptilia stigmatella. In South Glendale 134 moths / 17 species were caught including 62 Small Wainscot, 9 Neglected Rustic, a Pink-barred Sallow, 2 Red-line Quakers, 5 Heath Rustic, 6 Northern Deep-brown Darts, a Brindled Ochre and a Straw Dot. Also a late Notocelia uddmanniana.

Marine Sightings: 25+ Risso's Dolphins were seen off the Butt this evening.

   Red-line Quaker (rufa), Pandemis cerasana and Notocelia uddmanniana (John Kemp); Red-throated Diver (Andy Coyne); Marsh Harrier (Andy Leslie)

17th September:

St. Kilda: 5 Lapland Buntings, a Whinchat, Blackcap, Goldcrest, 50+ Wheatear, a Jack Snipe, 42 Snipe, 3 Golden Plover and a Curlew were seen on Hirta today.

Lewis: 5 Sooty Shearwaters were feeding off the Butt this morning and a ringtail Hen Harrier was seen just west of the lighthouse. A Marsh Harrier was at Point again today.

North Uist: The Barred Warbler is still in Grenitote and a Chiffchaff in Langass Wood. A Little Egret was seen yesterday at Clachan (between 11:00 - 14:00).

South Uist: A Red-necked Grebe was reported off Grogarry. A Garden Warbler is in South Glendale. A Barred Warbler was seen near Hebridean Jewellery again today and a Pectoral Sandpiper is on Loch Bee. A Common Sandpiper was at the mouth of the Howmore River and a Lapland Bunting flew over. 2 Goldcrests and a Chiffchaff are in Bornish.

Barra: A Barred Warbler, Garden Warbler, 2 Blackcaps and a Pied Flycatcher at the Ardmhor plantation. A Wood Warbler, Willow Warbler and a Blackcap were seen at North Bay and a Hen Harrier was seen near the airport.

Marine Sightings: 5 Risso's Dolphins, 3 Bottle-nosed Dolphins and 34 Harbour Porpoise were seen off the Butt of Lewis this morning.

Otter (Steve Duffield); Garden Warbler (John Kemp)

16th September:

Lewis: A Marsh Harrier was seen hunting over the moor on Point this afternoon between Shulishader and Seisader at 4:15 pm before heading off towards Garrabost. It later returned to hunt in the same area in the early evening. A Turtle Dove was in Port of Ness. A Blackcap was at Eoropie. A ringtail Hen Harrier was at Loch Stiapabhat whilst a Black-tailed Godwit and 2 Ruff were nearby on the machair.

North Uist: Willow Warbler and juvenile Slavonian Grebe near Berneray ferry terminal. Chiffchaff in Carinish.

Benbecula: A Chiffchaff was in Torlum.

South Uist: A Barred Warbler was seen at Hebridean Jewellery today; plus another was reported from the island (Birdguides) as well as a Pied Flycatcher, 2 Little Stints and 4 Curlew Sandpipers. 3 Pectoral Sandpipers are still on Loch Bee.

Barra: A Little Stint and Curlew Sandpiper are on Vatersay.

Insects: An Elephant Hawkmoth was trapped in Carinish last night.

15th September:

Lewis: The juvenile Marsh Harrier was seen at Loch Stiapabhat again today. A Turtle Dove and a Blackcap are in Port of Ness.

North Uist: A juvenile Sedge Warbler is in Carinish this morning.

Benbecula: 2 juvenile Curlew Sandpipers and a Lapland Bunting are at Borve Point.

South Uist: A Pied Flycatcher and Chiffchaff are in South Glendale. 5 Pectoral Sandpipers were on Loch Bee today. A Buff-breasted Sandpiper was on Kilaulay machair and 200 Black-tailed Godwits were in the area. A Little Stint was at Ardvule this morning.

Barra: A Pied Flycatcher was seen on the island today.

Insects: At least 7 Red Admirals are in Carinish this morning. Moth trapping on Daliburgh machair produced 79 moths/ 16 species including 41 Lime-speck Pugs, 8 Purple Bars, 2 Pinion-streaked Snouts and a Large Wainscot. In South Glendale 188 moths/ 28 species were caught including a Double-striped Pug, 2 Lime-speck Pugs, Small Autumnal Moth, 3 Neglected Rustic, 8 Heath Rustic, 3 Mouse Moths, 13 Northern Deep-brown Darts, a Red-line Quaker, 5 Lunar Underwings and a Large Wainscot.

Buzzard, Curlew Sandpipers and Lapland Bunting (Steve Duffield); Pied Flycatcher, Double-striped Pug and Pinion-streaked Snout (John Kemp)

14th September:

Lewis: A ringtail Hen Harrier and juvenile Marsh Harrier were at Loch Stiapabhat; plus 3 Ruff nearby. 62 Pink-footed Geese flew south over Port of Ness this afternoon. A female / juvenile Marsh Harrier flew south at Tiumpan Head

North Uist: A Lapland Bunting was at Borve, Berneray.

South Uist: 3 Pectoral Sandpipers were at Ardkenneth / north-west Loch Bee this morning. 65 Brent Geese south past Garrynamonie this evening. 2 Ruff and 59 Black-tailed Godwits were at Stoneybridge.

Barra: A juvenile Curlew Sandpiper and Blackcap were on Vatersay this morning.

Insects: 3 Rusty-dot Pearls were trapped at Carinish last night. An Autumn Green Carpet , Lunar Underwing, Neglected Rustic and Silver Y were trapped in South Glendale last night.

Marine Sightings: Orca, Minke Whale, Common Dolphin, Risso’s Dolphin and Porpoise all seen off Tiumpan Head in the evening.

Autumn Green Carpet and Eudonia angustea (John Kemp)

13th September:

Lewis: A ringtail Hen Harrier and Black-tailed Godwit were near Loch Stiapabhat.

South Uist: A 1st winter Citrine Wagtail was at Loch an Duin Mhoir, near North Bay this morning. 3 Buff-breasted Sandpipers were on Kilaulay machair this morning. 200 Black-tailed Godwits and 3 Curlew Sandpipers were at Balgarva / north Loch Bee. A Little Stint was in North Bay. 2 Lapland Buntings flew north over the Howmore River.

Sound of Barra: 58 Black-throated Divers were seen from the ferry from Eriskay - Barra.

Barra: A Greenish Warbler was reported from Castle Bay (south side of the football pitch) along with 4 Willow Warblers and a Chiffchaff. A Lapland Bunting was on Vatersay.

Oban - Castle Bay: A juvenile Sabine's Gull was seen from the ferry today.

Little Stint (John Kemp)

12th September:

North Uist: 2 Barred Warblers and a Willow Warbler in Grenitote today (both Barred Warblers also present yesterday evening). 9 Ruff were at Balranald.

South Uist: 3 Lapland Buntings were at Balgarva this morning. 2 Buff-breasted Sandpipers and 90 Black-tailed Godwits were on Kilaulay machair this evening. 3 Curlew Sandpipers were at Ardvule and 24 Black-tailed Godwits were on Bornish machair.

Insects: 342 moths of 20 species were trapped in Carinish last night including 3 Dark Sword-grass, a Large Wainscot, Small Angle Shades and Lesser Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing. 10 Red-line Quakers, 6 Mouse Moths, 1 Neglected Rustic were trapped on Eriskay; whilst a Lunar Underwing, Angle Shades, Black Rustic, Large Wainscot and a Small Autumnal Moth were caught in South Glendale.

            Barred Warbler, Knot, Wheatear and Otter (Steve Duffield); Curlew Sandpiper, Black Rustic and Large Wainscot (John Kemp)

11th September:

Lewis: A 1st winter Mediterranean Gull was in Port of Ness this morning. A Turtle Dove, Pied Flycatcher and Blue Tit were in port of Ness this evening.

South Uist: A Barred Warbler was in Bornish. The Pied Flycatcher is still in South Glendale. A Little Stint was in North Bay and 2 Curlew Sandpipers were at Balgarva. A Curlew Sandpiper was at Howmore. 2 Ruff and 51 Black-tailed Godwits were at Stoneybridge.

Insects: A Red-line Quaker was caught in South Glendale last night and an Angle Shades and a Dark Sword-grass were trapped in Carinish.

Marine Sightings: 3 Harbour Porpoise were off Baleshare this morning. 4 Bottle-nosed Dolphins were off Ardvule.

Red-line Quaker (John Kemp)

10th September:

Lewis: The juvenile Marsh Harrier was at Loch Stiapabhat this evening and a Ruff was on the machair nearby. 2 Black-tailed Godwits are at Aignish.

North Uist: A Barred Warbler and female Blackcap are at Grenitote.

South Uist: A Citrine Wagtail is at the mouth of the Howmore River; 43 Black-tailed Godwits flew south and 4 Ruff were nearby. A Buff-breasted Sandpiper, Turtle Dove and Little Egret were at Ardivachar today. A Little Stint was in North Bay and a Curlew Sandpiper were at Balgarva. 3 juvenile Curlew Sandpipers were on the South Ford and 2 were at Ardvule.

Benbecula: A Little Stint was at Borve.

Insects: A Clifden Nonpareil was found in Swainbost last week. This is another rare visitor to the UK and the first record for the Outer Hebrides.

                                                                                     Clifden Nonpareil (Ian Moore); Citrine Wagtail, Black-tailed Godwits and Pied Flycatcher (John Kemp)

9th September:

Lewis: 6 House Martins were around the Calanais Stone visitor centre this afternoon.

North Uist: A Chiffchaff is in Langass Wood.

South Uist: The Pied Flycatcher and 2 Goldcrests are still in South Glendale. A Turtle Dove was at Balgarva.

Barra: A Barred Warbler was at Gleann today. A Lesser Whitethroat and Pied Flycatcher were at Brevig.

Insects: An Oleander Hawkmoth was photographed on Hirta, St. Kilda on 4th September by Shirley Leek. It is a rare immigrant to the UK and the first record for the Outer Hebrides. A little less exciting were 2 Angle Shades, a Silver Y and Dark Sword-grass  trapped in Carinish last night. A Red-green Carpet and the micro Caloptilia rufipennella (also new for the Outer Hebrides) were trapped at North Loch Eynort last night.

Oleander Hawkmoth (Shirley Leek); Caloptilia rufipennella (John Kemp)

8th September:

St. Kilda: late news of a juvenile Red-backed Shrike there on Friday 5th September.

Lewis: The Barred Warbler is still in Port of Ness. A Lapland Bunting was near the Butt. 5 Black-tailed Godwits were on Eoropie machair.

North Uist: 5 juvenile Curlew Sandpipers were on Loch Paible this morning. A Ruff was on Baleshare.

South Uist: A Pied Flycatcher and 2 Goldcrests are in South Glendale. The Citrine Wagtail was still at the mouth of the Howmore River and 5 Ruff were nearby. A Lapland Bunting and Curlew Sandpiper were at Ardivachar.

Insects: A Brindled Ochre and Angle Shades were trapped in South Glendale last night.

                                                                                                                   Red-backed Shrike (Paul Sharman); Brindled Ochre and Pied Flycather (John Kemp)

7th September:

Lewis: The Barred Warbler is still in Port of Ness. 2 Sooty Shearwaters flew west past the Butt (between 09:00 - 10:00). A Ruff and 15 Black-tailed Godwits were on the machair at Eoropie. A juvenile Hen Harrier was seen at Loch Stiapabhat.

North Uist: A Barred Warbler is in Carinish today. A Pied Flycatcher and Chiffchaff were in Langass Wood. The Turtle Dove was at Tigharry again late this afternoon. 3 juvenile Curlew Sandpipers and a Little Stint were at Loch Paible today.

Benbecula: A 1st winter Citrine Wagtail and Lapland Bunting were at Borve Point.

South Uist: The Citrine Wagtail is still at the mouth of the Howmore River. 46 Black-tailed Godwits are at Stoneybridge.

                                                                                     Barred Warbler, Citrine Wagtail and Lapland Bunting (Steve Duffield)

6th September:

Lewis: The Barred Warbler was still in Port of Ness this morning. A Redstart was at Eoropie behind the tea room. 12 Sooty Shearwaters flew west past the Butt in a 2.5 hr watch today.

North Uist: The Turtle Dove was at Tigharry again this evening.

Benbecula: A juvenile Little Stint was in Stinky Bay this morning.

South Uist: 3 juvenile Curlew Sandpipers were at Ardvule this afternoon. A Lapland Bunting was on the machair at Kilauley. Around 265 Black-tailed Godwits were at Ardkenneth / Kilauley. 42 Black-tailed Godwits were at West Gerinish; 33 were at Stoneybridge and 24 were at Bornish. A juvenile Curlew Sandpiper was on the South Ford. A Pied Flycatcher was at the Old Schoolhouse, Loch Carnan.

5th September:

Lewis: The Barred Warbler is still in Port of Ness. The juvenile Marsh Harrier was over Loch Stiapabhat late morning.

North Uist: A Turtle Dove was seen at Tigharry this evening.

Insects: 263 moths of 20 species were trapped in Carinish last night including a Dark Sword-grass and Large Wainscot.

Barred Warbler (Tony Marr)

4th September:

Lewis: A Barred Warbler was in Port of Ness today. A Marsh Harrier and ringtail Hen Harrier were at Loch Stiapabhat along with a Ruff and a Coot. A Lesser Whitethroat was at Eoropie.

North Uist: 2 Ruff are on Baleshare.  A Slavonian Grebe was seen in the Sound of Harris from the Berneray - Leverburgh ferry. The Barred Warbler is still in Grenitote.

South Uist: The Citrine Wagtail is still at the mouth of the Howmore River and the Greenish Warbler is at Bornish.

Insects: 162 moths of 25 species were trapped on Daliburgh machair last night including 34 Lime-speck Pugs, 48 Flounced Rustic, 2 Mouse Moths, 3 Northern Deep-brown Darts, a Rusty-dot Pearl and 6 Parsnip Moths.

                                                                                                                Barred Warbler, Marsh and Hen Harrier (Tony Marr); Rusty-dot Pearl (John Kemp)

3rd September:

North Uist: The Barred Warbler is still at Grenitote. a Goldcrest is in Carinish.

South Uist: The juvenile Citrine Wagtail is still at the mouth of the Howmore River; also 3 Ruff nearby and 7 Black-tailed Godwits flew over, heading south. A Greenish Warbler is in a garden in Bornish this afternoon. 4 Curlew Sandpipers were at Ardvule and 73 Brent Geese (in 2 flocks) flew south.

Insects: 164 moths of 33 species were trapped in South Glendale last night including 3 Lunar Underwings.

                                                                                     Citrine Wagtail (Steve Duffield); Barred Warbler (Bob McMillan); Lunar Underwing (John Kemp)

2nd September:

North Uist: The Barred Warbler is still in Grenitote. 12 Black-tailed Godwits were on Loch Paible this morning.

South Uist: The juvenile Citrine Wagtail is still at the mouth of the Howmore River. Sea-watching from Ardvule produced a southerly movement of 581 Gannets, 126 Manx Shearwaters, a Sooty Shearwater, 9 Common Scoters and 2 Great Skuas. Also 4 Curlew Sandpipers in the south bay.

1st September:

Lewis: A juvenile Marsh Harrier was reported over Loch Stiapabhat around mid-day today. 8 Black-tailed Godwits were on Eoropie machair and a Ruff was at the Butt.

North Uist: A Barred Warbler was at Grenitote today (and apparently present yesterday). 3 juvenile Curlew Sandpipers and a juvenile Black-tailed Godwit were at Loch Paible; with 12 Black-tailed Godwits present in the evening. A juvenile Curlew Sandpiper was at Aird an Runair this evening. 3 Ruff were on Berneray.

South Uist: The juvenile Citrine Wagtail is still at the mouth of the Howmore River and a juvenile Curlew Sandpiper was also present. A juvenile Curlew Sandpiper was at Ardvule.

                                                          Citrine Wagtail (John Kemp); Barred Warbler (Steve Duffield)