Sightings in June 2012

May 29th 2012


Moorhen – 1 Loch an Aigeil, 28th June

Spotted Flycatcher – 1 near Achmelvich Bridge, 28th June

Little Grebe – 1 Lochan Sgeireach nr. Stoer, 28th June

Black-throated Diver – 1 Loch Drumbeg, 25th June

Golden Plover – 4 near Calda House, 24th June (VB)

Dipper – 1 near Calda House, 24th June

Eider – adult female and 5 juveniles, Bay of Culkein, 23rd June

Sanderling – 1 Bay of Culkein, 23rd June

Arctic Skua – 2 dark morph birds over Raffin, 23rd June

Stonechat – adult female and 1 juvenile near Strathcroy, 23rd June

Yellowhammer – singing male near Brackloch, 22nd JUne

Tufted Duck – 1 (male) Loch an Aigeil, 22nd June

Dunlin – 4 Balchladich Bay, 21st June

Sandwich Tern – 1 adult Balchladich Bay, 21st June

Sand Martin – 1 over Loch an Aigeil, Stoer, 21st June

Great Northern Diver – 2 off Bay of Stoer, 21st June. One bird was in full summer plumage.

Red-throated Diver – 4 bay of Clachtoll; 4 Bay of Stoer; 2 Clashnessie Bay, 21st June

Lapwing – 10 Clachtoll, 21st June

Swift – 22 flying south over Clachtoll then 5 minutes later a further 6 flew over, 21st June This is an uncommon record for Assynt and an unusually large number.

Common Scoter – 1 (female) Bay of Clachtoll, 21st June

Osprey – 2 Loch Roe, Achmelvich, 19th June

Stonechat – 1 adult female and 1 juvenile near Oldany farm, 19th June

Whinchat – 1 adult male near Oldany farm, 19th June

Red-breasted Merganser – 1 adult female and 2 chicks, Oldany Estuary, 19th June

Red-throated Diver – Loch Dhrombaig, 19th June

Lapwing – 9 Loch na Claise, 18th June

Puffin – 3 off Rubh’an Dunain, 18th June

Linnet – 2 adults and 1 juvenile Culkein Stoer, 18th June

Eider – 2 adult females with 8 ducklings Bay of Culkein, 18th June

Red-throated Diver – 2 Bay of Culkein, 18th June

Ringed Plover – Pair with two chicks Bay of Culkein, 18th June

Sanderling – 3 Bay of Culkein, 18th June

Dunlin – 3 Bay of Culkein, 18th June

Mistle Thrush – 2 adults and 2 juveniles near Ledbeg, 17th June (BB)

Cuckoo – 1 bird calling Culkein Drumbeg, 03.40 8th June!!

‘Comic Terns’ – c35 with approximately 30 of these being Arctic Terns on off-shore islands Culkein Drumbeg, 17th June. A number were bringing in food for courtship feeding and several ‘dreads’ occurred.

Barn Owl – with 3 small chicks (this is the first proof of breeding in Assynt) in a small rock crevice near Lochinver, 13th June (AS).

Osprey – 2 adults feeding on Loch Roe near Achmelvich for last few days, 13th June. Has anyone seen sign of a nest?

Dipper – feeding young on River Inver at Brackloch, 13th June.

Goldfinch – Juvenile on feeder Baddidarach, 14th June (MS)

Peregrine – near Loch Drumbeg, 12th June.

Eider Ducks – pair with 7 chicks and another female with four chicks in the sea at Clachtoll, 9th June.

Greenshank – Pair displaying near path to suileag bothy, 6th June

Wigeon – Pair near path to suileag bothy, 6th June

Ring Ouzel – carrying food to nest – Bone caves path, 5th June

Whimbrel – 2 Clachtoll, 3rd June

Greylag Goose – 2 pairs each with four goslings – Loch an Aigel Stoer, 3rd June

Golden Plover – 1 Balchladich, 2nd June

Whimbrel – 2 Clachtoll, 2nd June

Sand Martin – 3 Clachtoll, 2nd June

Black-throated Diver – 1 Clachtoll Bay, 2nd June

Red-throated Diver – 2 Clachtoll Bay, 2nd June

Lapwing – 5 Clachtoll, 2nd June

Carrion Crow – 1 near Culkein Stoer, 1st June Likely to be the bird first seen on 20th May as Carrion Crow is not a common record in north-west Scotland far less Assynt.

Red-throated Diver – 1 Bay of Culkein, 1st June

Great Skua – 1 Bay of Culkein, 1st June This bird was harrasing an adult Gannet which gave up its food.

Ringed Plover – 10 Bay of Culkein, 1st June

Dunlin – 17 Bay of Culkein, 1st June

Sanderling – 16 Bay of Culkein, 1st June These birds had plumages ranging from ‘winter’ to spring and were great to compare the differences.



Ragged Robin – 1 white flowered plant growing near Oldany Estuary, 27th June. Photo on Gallery-Flowering Plants.

Red Admiral butterfly – 1 Culkein Drumbeg, 26th June

Cuckoo Ray Raja naevus – 1 ‘nearly dead’ on beach Achmelvich, 25th June (FL). A rare record, photo on ‘Gallery-Marine’ and more information under ‘News’.

Red-tailed Bumbelbee – 1, a Queen, on Geranium sp. flowers Clachtoll, 23rd-26th June (AS). This is only the second ever record for this species in West Sutherland, photo on Gallery-Insects.

Grey Seal – 2 off Raffin, 23rd June

Six-spot Burnet moth – 2 near Raffin, 23rd June

Killer Whale 7 off Culkein Stoer, 7pm 20th June

Basking Shark, 1 off Stoer Lighthouse, 20th June

Pine Marten – adult with 3 young Culag woods, 18th June.

Killer Whale – 5 off Stoer Lighthouse, 18th June

Basking Shark – 2 off Stoer Lighthouse, 18th June

Chimney Sweeper moth – 1 Culkein Drumbeg, 20th June

Pipistrelle Bat – 84 leaving maternity roost near Lochinver, 19th June Photo on Gallery-mammals

Harbour Porpoise – 2 off Stoer Head Lighthouse, 18th June

Minke Whale – 1 seen several times off Stoer Head Lighthouse, 18th June

Harbour Porpoise – 3 between Rubh’an Dunain and Eilean Chrona, 18th June

Fragrant Orchid – 3 spikes in flower Culkein Drumbeg, 17th June

Common Blue Butterfly – Culkein Drumbeg, 17th June

Common Seal – c45 Oldany Estuary to Culkein Drumbeg harbour area, 17th June

Minke Whale – 2 seen from Stoer Head Lighthouse 14th June (LS).

Basking Shark – along coast line from lighthouse to Old Man of Stoer, 14th June.

Red Deer – with new calf only a few days old Brackloch, 13th June

Common Blue Butterfly – First 2012 record Calda House near Inchnadamph, 13th June.

Black Mountain Moth – On Beinn an Fhurain, 12th June (G. Chambers). This is a very rare moth for Assynt with only one other recent record from 29th June 1998 a couple kilometres further south than this one; this seems to be the furthest north record of this species. See photo on Gallery-Invertebrates-Insects.

Small Pearl-bordered Fritillary -Culkein Drumbeg peat road, 12th June.

Argent and Sable Moth – Drumbeg peat road, 12th June.

Lesser Butterfly Orchid – Roadside verge near Drumbeg 12th June.

Twayblade Orchid – Clachtoll, 9th June

Dwarf Cornel – Suilven, 7th June

Basking Shark – Stoer Point, 7th June

Dolphins (Common?) 30+ at Stoer Head Lighthouse 6th June (LS).

Harbour Porpoise at Stoer Head Lighthouse 6th June (LS).

Pine Marten – Achmelvich road, 6th June

Adder – large female on all-abilities path Little Assynt, 2pm 6th June

Otter – single in Lochinver bay, 5th June

Small Heath Butterfly – Bone caves path, 5th June

Killer Whale – 5 near Handa Island chasing seals, 2nd June

Otter – Family of four Strathan near Lochinver, 2nd June

Common Dolphin – c15 off Stoer Head Lighthouse, 1st June

Minke Whale – 1 off Stoer Head Lighthouse, 1st June (LS)

Basking Shark – 1 off Stoer Head Lighthouse, 1st June (LS)

Narrow-leaved Helleborines – flowering on road to Achmelvich, 1st June

Gold-ringed Dragonfly – Glencanisp, 1st June

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Recent Sightings

Rock Dove

40 on croft near Clachtoll campsite (AS) (21/10)


6 near reedbed at Clachtoll (AS) (20/10)


single animal in marshy area, Clachtoll (Duncan Orr-Ewing) (20/10)

Common Dolphin

two animals off Clachtoll (Duncan Orr-Ewing) (20/10)

Winter Thrushes

two Redwing and a single Fieldfare, Clachtoll (Duncan Orr-Ewing). The first record as the thrushes start to arrive in Assynt and eat the Rowan berries. (20/10)

Red-necked Grebe

single bird still present in Loch Inver (Gwen Richards and Duncan Orr-Ewing) (19/10)


single birds at Clachtoll and Clashnessie (Duncan Orr-Ewing) (19/10)

Golden Plover

two birds, Clachtoll (Duncan Orr-Ewing) (18/10)