Sightings in August 2014

August 1st 2014


Golden Eagle – Gleann Leireag, 31st August (Steve Collie)

Black-throated Diver – 2 Clashnessie Bay, 31st August (DAH)

Great Northern Diver – 3 Clashnessie Bay, 31st August (DAH)

Sanderling – 7 Bay of Culkein, 31st August (DAH)

Dunlin – 13 Bay of Culkein, 31st August (DAH)

Sanderling – single Bay of Stoer, 29th August (DAH)

Red-throated Diver – 2 adults Bay of Stoer, 29th August (DAH)

Snowy Owl – This is to ask you to keep an eye out for a huge white owl reported on the track from Elphin to Lochinver and to please let us know if you get a sighting. Thank you.

Merlin – single female/juvenile chasing Hooded Crow near Achnacarnin, 27th August (DAH). Would have to say this was more likely a juvenile given the prey it was going after!

Black-throated Diver – adult Clashnessie Bay, 27th August and two on 29th August (DAH)

Merlin – single female/juvenile chasing Meadow Pipit, Stoerhead Lighthouse, 26th August (DAH)

Manx Shearwater – 5 past Stoerhead Lighthouse, 26th August (DAH)

White-tailed Eagle – 4 over Raffin, 25th August (June Hall) then four again reported near Culkein Stoer, 26th August.

Gannet – 120+ feeding with Common Dolphin off Clashnessie Bay, 25th August (DAH)

Great Northern Diver – 5 immatures just north of Clashnessie Bay, 25th August (DAH)

Twite – c50 Stoerhead Lighthouse, 24th August (DAH)

Goldfinch – 5 juveniles Culkein Stoer, 24th August (DAH)

Sparrowhawk – female Culkein Drumbeg, 24th August (DAH)

Curlew – 9 Loch Kirkaig, 23rd August (DAH)

Lesser Black-backed Gull – 10 Loch Kirkaig, 23rd August (DAH)

Long-tailed Tit – 12 Strathan, 23rd August (DAH)

Red-throated Diver – single adult Bay of Culkein, 22nd August (DAH)

Goldfinch – 3 Culkein Stoer, 22nd August (DAH)

Merlin – single female/juvenile chasing a Meadow Pipit Culkein Stoer, 22nd August (DAH)

Redshank – 32 (adults and juveniles) Oldany Estuary, 22nd August (DAH)

Goldcrest – single juvenile Glencanisp, 20th August (DAH)

Treecreeper – single Glencanisp, 20th August (DAH)

Blackcap – single female Glencanisp, 20th August (DAH)

Golden Plover – 8 Culkein Stoer, 18th August (DAH)

Sanderling – 3 (2 adults 1 juvenile) Bay of Culkein, 18th August (DAH)

Turnstone – 6 (4 adults 2 juveniles) Bay of Culkein, 18th August (DAH)

White Wagtail – single Bay of Culkein, 18th August (DAH)

Manx Shearwater – regular groups of up to 6 off Clachtoll, Stoer and Rubh’an Dunain, 18th August (DAH)

Grey Wagtail – Oldany Estuary, 16th August (DAH)

Peregrine – adult over Culkein Drumbeg, 16th August (DAH)

Manx Shearwater – 6 off Stoerhead Lighthouse, 15th August (DAH)

Great Northern Diver – Bay of Culkein, 15th August (DAH)

Oystercatcher – 52 Bay of Culkein, 13th August (DAH)

Mandarin Duck – single female Loch an Aigeil, 12th August (Mark Ellis). This is new a bird species for Assynt and an unusual west coast record. Photo on Gallery-Birds.

Starling – 53 Culkein Stoer, 12th August (DAH). All these birds were juveniles moulting to adult like 1st-winter plumage, very good to know our Starlings are doing well.

Willow Warbler – singing in garden Nedd, 11th August (Ian and Pat Evans)

Dipper – single on Oldany River, 11th August (DAH)

Goldfinch – 2 adults near Oldany Farm, 11th August (DAH)

Bullfinch – family of three near Loch Poll track, 11th August (DAH)

Cuckoo – single near Torbreck, 10th August (Gwen Richards)

Peregrine – immature over Culkein Drumbeg, 10th August (DAH)

Merlin – flying past Stoerhead Lighthouse, 10th August (DAH)

Common Tern – 2 adults feeding single chick on off shore island Culkein Drumbeg, 10th August (DAH)

Woodcock – single bird visiting garden Achnacarnin, various dates (I & P MacKenzie)

House Sparrow – c20 Culkein Stoer, 9th August (DAH)

Turnstone – 4 (3 adults 1 juvenile) Bay of Culkein, 9th August (DAH)

Dunlin – 8 (4 adults 4 juveniles) Bay of Culkein, 9th August (DAH)

Ringed Plover – 29 (adults and juveniles) Bay of Culkein, 9th August (DAH)

Manx Shearwater – 4 off Stoerhead Lighthouse, 9th August (DAH)

Twite – c50 Stoerhead Lighthouse, 9th August (DAH)

Buzzard – 3 over Clashmore, 9th August (DAH)

Little Grebe – 7 (3 adults 4 juveniles) Loch na Claise, 9th August (DAH)

Willow Warbler – single bird singing Culkein Drumbeg, 9th August (DAH)

Great Northern Diver – 3 immatures out from Clashnessie Bay, 6th August then five on 9th August(DAH)

Dunlin – 2 adults Bay of Culkein, 6th August (DAH)

Snipe – single bird on shore Bay of Culkein, 6th August (DAH)

Whimbrel – single feeding around Stoerhead Lighthouse, 5th August (Leigh Sedgley)

Merlin – female near Elphin, 4th August (Bill Badger)

Canada Goose – single Loch an Aigeil, 2nd August (Howard Grey)



Risso’s Dolphin – 6 off Stoerhead Lighthouse, 31st August (DAH). These animals bring the number of cetacean species recorded from the Lighthouse this year to seven.

Harbour Porpoise – 3 off Clachtoll Broch, 29th August (DAH)

10-spot Ladybird Adalia decempunctata – single Stoerhead Lighthouse, 27th August (Katie Dyke). Photo by Sara Pearce on Gallery-Other Insects.

Common Dolphin – c12 off Stoerhead Lighthouse, 27th August (DAH)

Bottlenose Dolphin – c30 off Stoerhead Lighthouse, 26th August (DAH)

Harbour Porpoise – 4 (2 adults with juveniles) off Stoerhead Lighthouse, 26th August (DAH)

Common Dolphin – 9+ off Bay of Clachtoll, 26th August (Ben and Cathy Hignett). Photo on Gallery-Marine.

Common Hawker dragonfly – 2 males near Clashnessie, 25th August (DAH) Photo on Gallery-Dragonflies.

Common Dolphin – c150 off Clashnessie Bay, 25th August (reported)

Vapourer moth Orgyia antique – caterpillar on breakwater Lochinver, 21st August (Mathew Whittle). Photo on Gallery-Moths.

Common Frog – single Pollachapuill, Culkein Drumbeg, 16th August (Clarinda Chant)

Slow worm – single Pollachapuill, Culkein Drumbeg, 16th August (Ian Evans)

Common Toad – 3 removed alive from road drains to rear of visitors centre Lochinver, 14th August (DAH). It is time to start checking road drains again and rescuing any toads, etc which have fallen in. If we don’t remove them they will take several days to die as once in they cannot get out again. A simple kids ‘fishing net on a pole’ is all you need to scoop them out of the drains.

Humpback Whale – 2 breaching and tail slapping around 800 metres off shore, Stoerhead Lighthouse, 7th August (Leigh Sedgley). This is the first sighting of this huge species of baleen whale since September last year but well worth the wait! Two photographs on Gallery-Marine.

Minke Whale – single directly out from Stoerhead Lighthouse, 6th August (Leigh Sedgley)

Bottlenose Dolphin – mother and calf off Stoerhead Lighthouse, 6th August (DAH)

Adder – male on All Abilities Path, Little Assynt, 6th August (Val Badger)

Sunfish – single off Stoerhead Lighthouse, 5th August (DAH)

Basking Shark – single off Stoerhead Lighthouse, 5th August (DAH)

Minke Whale – two off Stoerhead Lighthouse, 5th August (DAH)

Slow worm – two near Loch Poll track, 3rd August (DAH)

Scotch Argus butterfly – on track to Cnocnaneach, Glen Canisp, 3rd August (Gwen Richards)

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Recent Sightings


single male bird in Torbreck garden (Gwen Richards) (30/09)

Yellow-browed Warbler

single bird in Torbreck garden (Gwen Richards) (30/09)


single reptile spotted on Baddidarach to Achmelvich path (Ballal Mirza) (29/09)

Brent Goose

single light-bellied bird on rock in Clashnessie Bay (DAH). This bird had two coloured leg rings and we are trying to establish its history. Update 30-9-20 - we have heard back from the Irish Brent Goose Ringing Group and this bird was ringed as a juvenile in South Dublin in December 2019. (29/09)

Little Grebe

three birds, Lochan Sgeireach, Stoer (DAH) (29/09)


single bird, probably juvenile, in 'dogfight' with Hooded Crow for over 10 minutes (Gwen Richards and Ian M. Evans) (29/09)

Viper's-bugloss (Echium vulgare)

single plant in fenced ground, Culkein Stoer (Ian M. Evans and Gwen Richards). First record of this plant in Assynt since 2006 (29/09)

Bar-tailed Godwit

single bird Bay of Culkein (Gwen Richards and Ian Evans) (29/09)