Wildlife sightings 21 May 2015

Notes from the Discovery Centre team – Fran

We have had a busy time in the Discovery Centre with Puffin Fest and the Birthday celebrations, and luckily the puffins have started to appear reliably in large numbers on camera.

There have been a few ‘firsts’ this week: the first kittiwake eggs at Dunbar have been recorded on camera today (21 May). Kittiwakes have been seen in large groups frantically pulling at vegetation on the slopes of the Isle of May, in order to add to their nests.

The first guillemot egg (on camera) was recorded from Fidra on the 17 May, but we know from researchers on the May that there have been eggs for some time. There have been great views of guillemots with quite large single fish in the beak, which they hold head-first and sometimes seem unable to swallow!

The right-hand shag nest on the Isle of May finally has chicks. The first two hatched overnight on the 18 May with the third one appearing the day after. The white tips of their beaks can be seen bobbing about when there is a changeover in brooding parent.

Four eggs have been clearly seen under our sitting eider on Fidra, and she has been observed covering them with soft clumps of down which have been pulled from her own breas (Stop Press: eider chicks can now be seen on camera). Adult and juvenile peregrines have also been regularly seen on Fidra, and the Bass is full of gannets sitting on eggs.


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