Sea Bird Colonies

June and July is a great time to visit a breeding sea bird colony around the UK. It can be a major assault on the senses with the smell, noise and birds coming in from all angles, but its really a wonder of the natural world and cannot be missed.

The main colonies near to me in the Scottish Borders are Bass Rock and the Isle of May in the Firth of Forth, and St Abbs and the Farne Isles on the east coast. Any or all of these are worth a trip in June or July, though the Gannets of Bass Rock take longer to breed so can be visited other months as well.

I’ve covered Gannets before on my website, mainly concentrating on individual portraits. This time I wanted to show the spectacle of birds together on mass as they cling onto the cliff to raise their young, or fly around the rock face in groups.

Scottish sea cliffs

Scottish sea cliffs

Feathers being blown over the side of Bass Rock

Feathers being blown over the side of Bass Rock

The Bass Rock Gannet colony

The Bass Rock Gannet colony

Gannets off a Scottish coast

Gannets off a Scottish coast

Remote camera on Bass Rock

Remote camera on Bass Rock

Puffins on the Isle of May

Puffins on the Isle of May

Guillemots, Razorbills and Kittiwakes on the Isle of May

Guillemots and Razorbills on the Isle of May

About Stuart Scott Images

Stuart Scott is a photographer based in the Scottish Borders. Born and brought up in Wales, Stuart spent much of his childhood around animals and birds, as well as exploring the local countryside where he learnt to enjoy and respect the natural world. He developed a keen interest in photography whilst studying for a Fine Art degree, and in the following years used and explored photography in his work. Since moving to Scotland Stuart has tried to concentrate his photography to within a few miles of his home. As well as following the local wildlife and exploring the Scottish Borders, he has begun a long-term project on the landscape and life of Lauderdale. Stuart's work has been exhibited in a number of places including with Scottish Natural Heritage, Edinburgh Zoo and the Scottish Sea Bird Centre. He recently won The Mammal Society's Mammal Photographer of the Year 2014 Competition. Stuart lives near Lauder with his wife and son.
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