First Time on the Isle of May




Jeannie Carlson and her family wrote this of their first experience of the Isle of May after recently spending a week staying in the Lowlight a week ago.

“We made our first visit to the Isle of May this spring. We enjoy bird-watching, and a visit to this lovely island lets you get up close and observe the beauty and drama of the life of sea birds and small birds on migration. It takes little patience to sit quietly and let the sights and sounds of the daily life the bird world unfold – courting and romance, adventure and daring, hustle and bustle, secrets and songs, preening and posing, even life and death.

At first it is just the sheer number of sea birds that are mesmerising, but eventually individuals emerge from the crowd. The puffins are an obvious delight to watch, but don’t overlook the shag’s trendy hair style, the razorbills’ cliff edge choreography, or a guillemot’s brindled eye patch. As you make your way around and over the isle, keep an eye pealed for the small birds that pass the island on migration. We saw our first barn swallows of the season taking a break in the shelter of a cliff wall on the rusty air pipes. Flitting about on the rocks on the hillsides are handsome Wheatears. We were very lucky to see a lone Golden Plover stopping over too. You never know what you might see. And if you are not sure what it is you have seen, don’t be shy to ask the resident wardens David or Jeremy. They willingly share their extensive knowledge and enthusiasm for the Isle.

Jeannie Carlson”

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