Sunday, 14 May 2017


Up at 3.30 and out the door for 4. Not ideal but had to be done.

I arrived at the car park by the lighthouse at 5 and made my way down to the watch point. I was alone. The weather was kind and  settled n and scanned (extremely) hopefully! The seabird spectacle was very impressive with squadrons of Gannets, Razorbills, Guillemots and Kittiwakes passing constantly. There were also a few Fulmars and  even saw a Puffin!

Around 7 I was joined by Brett Richards. It was great to see him and we chatted while we both searched the water. At this point the weather took a turn for the worse and it started to rain. I had to go back to the car park to put some money in the machine which inconveniently wasn't unlocked until 7.30? Yes, it was a risk but the odds were stacked heavily in my favour. On my return Brett informed me he'd had a drake Garganey...but no ALBATROSS!

I stuck it out till 9 when the rain had reached stair rod proportions. I said goodbye to Brett and wished him well.

No regrets. I HAD to try. Having a lie in and hearing the bird had been seen again, wasn't an option. I realize the odds were slim, especially for a species that views the North Sea like a lake. There was also a slim chance it might associate with the Gannets, maybe even finding a perch on the's happened in the past.

I travelled to Sula Sgeir in 2007 on a charter organised by RBA. Louise drove me up to Ullapool and waited whilst I undertook another of my crazy jaunts! The bird had departed unfortunately. Looking back at the records it was present in 2005 (25th - 31st August) and 2006 (23rd May - 1st July). .I guess access wasn't possible in those years? It was only present 3 days in 2007. There have been 10 single day records since.

Maybe one day...?

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