Winter Waders

Isle of May National Nature Reserve

Purple Sandpiper Purple Sandpipers wintering on the island

Oyster 1 Oystercatcher

Turnstone Turnstone at high tide

Monday 18th December comments: We all know that the Isle of May NNR is an important reserve for its nesting seabirds and breeding Grey Seals but its also important for other wildlife, even in the depths of winter.

During the winter months the island is uninhabited and therefore undisturbed which is ideal for a number of wading birds which utilise the island during this period. Breeding birds from the high arctic such as Turnstone and Purple Sandpiper winter in small numbers, feeding along the rocky shorelines and roosting at high tide in the relative safety of the island.

These small wading birds will eventually head back north in the spring but until then will take full advantage of the Isle of May. Other birds such as Oystercatchers and Curlew are also present during the winter, showing you just how the island is used by wildlife…

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