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Handa Island - BirdForum Opus

On the way up from the ferry, June 2014
Photo by ClarkWGriswold

Scotland, North


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Notable Species

Handa is famous for its seabird colony. Common Guillemot, Razorbill, Northern Fulmar and Black-legged Kittiwakes are breeding in the cliffs on the northern side of the island. There are also around 250 pairs of Atlantic Puffins. Big numbers of Great Skuas can be seen on the island as well.

Crossing the moor June 2014
Photo by ClarkWGriswold


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Birds you can see here include:

Common Eider, Red-breasted Merganser, Red Grouse, Red-throated Diver, Northern Fulmar, Northern Gannet, Great Cormorant, European Shag, Grey Heron, Osprey, Common Buzzard, Eurasian Oystercatcher, Ringed Plover, Sanderling, Dunlin, Common Snipe, Great Skua, Arctic Skua, Black-headed Gull, Common Gull, Herring Gull, Great Black-backed Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Black-legged Kittiwake, Common Tern, Arctic Tern, Atlantic Puffin, Black Guillemot, Common Guillemot, Razorbill, Rock Dove, Common Cuckoo, Eurasian Skylark, Rock Pipit, Meadow Pipit, Pied Wagtail, Dunnock, European Robin, Northern Wheatear, Common Stonechat, Eurasian Blackbird, Sedge Warbler, Hooded Crow, Common Raven, Twite, Common Reed Bunting

Other Wildlife

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Site Information

A sea stac on the northern side of the island, holds many breeding birds, June 2014
Photo by Tiger1

April-July: Guillemots, puffins and razorbills. May-September: Great skuas, arctic skuas, fulmars and kittiwakes. June-August: Wild flowers

History and Use

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Areas of Interest

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Access and Facilities

A small ferry boat operates from Tarbet. The service operates April - early September (2014: Monday 31 March to Saturday 30 August), Monday - Saturday from 9:00am. Ferry costs (2014 prices) £12.50 (adults), £5.00 (children). Crossings are on demand and weather dependent. Last outbound journey approx. 2:00pm. Last return journey at 5:00pm. For all enquiries relating to the ferry, contact the operators, Roger (07780 967 800) or Paul (07775 625 890)

Tarbet is sign-posted from the A894, 2 miles North of Scourie. Parking and public toilets available in Tarbet ( no toilets on Handa). Public transport: Scourie is the nearest public transport terminus. Bus service via Ullapool. Train and post-bus via Lairg. Post-bus stops on request at junction to Tarbet. From there it is a 2 mile walk to the ferry. Visitors using public transport should check times carefully.

Contact Details

Ferry: Roger (07780 967 800) or Paul (07775 625 890)

External Links

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