You are here: St Kilda Today > Ranger's Diary > An utterly ridiculous amount of puffins!


An utterly ridiculous amount of puffins!

19 July 2014
Thousands of puffins nest on Dun and at this time of year the island is awash with activity as birds are flying in and out of the colony with fish to feed their young. I spent a couple of hours on Dun last week to revisit the puffin burrows that I marked in May and I was utterly amazed by the sheer numbers of birds wheeling about over head.  Fulmars, puffins standing and loads flying about in the same directionPuffins with Boreray in the background

Puffins are poor fliers;  they have difficulty taking off and flap their wings at an incredible 300 - 400 beats per minute to stay  airborne.  They also have trouble landing and often stumble as they touch the ground. The puffin in the shots below tried to set itself down next to its neighbour but instead tumbled head first and almost pushed it off!You can not land here, there is no roomDo not land here

Puffins fly into the wind on take off and with the wind on their approach to the colony.  This helps to make sure they are all flying in the same direction to prevent collisions. Good job really considering just how many birds there are!Incoming puffinPuffins resting and others flying about in all directions


Gina


<< Previous
Summer Secrets!
Next >>
Half a fish?