Wildlife and Nature

Birds on HarrisThe islands boast a wide range of wildlife and plantlife, probably the best way to view these are on guided walks, or sea safari’s. There are Red Deer and birdlife is abundant, in the spring and summer months a strange grating sound will alert you to the presence of Corncrakes, but you will be lucky to spot one!

Oyster Catcher

Oyster Catcher

Harris is home to; Cormorants, Shags, Oyster Catchers, Herring Gulls, Black Back Gulls, Gannets, Curlew and Dunlin. Inland you are quite likley to see Eagles, Buzzards and Sparrow Hawks. The list goes on, but visit the Bird Pages on The Western Isles website to get a more complete list and recent sightings.

Wildflowers throw up a carpet of colour, especially on the Machair were the hebridean spotted orchid and the heath orchids can be found. To see pictures and find out more about the wildflowers of the Hebrides visit Virtualheb.

On a a sea safari you are likely to see Dolphins and Porpoises, there are also a variety of Whales (Risso’s Dolphin, Pilot Whales and Minke Whale’s are the most common) off our coast. There are plenty of lookout places to view them from if you don’t fancy a boat trip. Late August is a good time for Baskin Sharks. There are lots of seals, both common and grey around the shoreline, just keep looking!

North Harris Trust Ranger Service offer Guided Walks – The Ranger leads a comprehensive programme of guided walks and events from April through to October. Further information on local events is available in the Tarbert Tourist Information Centre, in Events magazine and in De Tha Dol, the local Harris paper.

Check out Walk Highlands for more walks on Harris, and Lewis.

Wildlife enthusiasts will be fascinated by the blog from North Harris Trust listing the many and varied species they spot daily.