The Isle of May Bird Observatory
Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation - Scottish Charity Number SC001783







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The Isle of May Bird Observatory is Scotland’s oldest bird observatory, founded in 1934 The observatory is administered by a charitable trust (The Isle of May Bird Observatory and Field Station Trust) and manned by volunteer observers between March and November. The Observatory was founded by a group of young Scottish ornithologists and has continued to depend on the enthusiasm of amateurs who come to the island, usually for a week at a time, to maintain observations. The living accomodation is housed within the Low Light (pic on left), a former navigational lighthouse
The Island lies 5 miles off the Fife coast in eastern Scotland. It is a National Nature Reserve owned and managed by Scottish Natural Heritage and is internationally important for its populations of breeding seabirds particularly Puffins Fratercula arctica and is well placed to monitor migration of passerines and other birds in spring and autumn, often attracting large numbers of passerines in the right conditions. 

The island is a major landmark from many coastal locations in eastern Scotland sitting low in the water at the mouth of the Firth of Forth. It is best seen from the Fife coast where it dominates the seascapes from the fishing villages of the East Neuk; Crail, Anstruther and Pittenweem 

Explore this website further to learn more about the observatory, the island and its birds


2015 Bookings

The remaining weeks for this year are now full. Bookings for 2016 will now open to members from 1st November