Skomer Island, Wales

 
 

Skomer Island, lying less than a mile off the beautiful Pembrokeshire coast, is a world renowned wildlife paradise. The exposed headlands, towering offshore rocks, and sheltered inlets of this fascinating island are home to a incredible variety of wildlife, both above and below the surface.

Skomer is most famous for its Puffins. Together with neighboring Skokholm Island it forms the largest breeding Puffin colony in Southern Britain.

But the Puffins account for just a small portion of the wildlife who call this island their home.

With and estimated population of up to 165,000 pairs, Skomer is home to the largest and most important breeding colony of Manx Shearwater in the world! Between the Puffins, Shearwaters and Rabbits there are very few spots on the island which have not been burrowed. As such, beneath the visible surface, many parts of the island are a honeycomb of intricate tunnels and burrows. Designated paths are set out for visitors to avoid damaging any of this delicate habitat.

Also present in their thousands are the Razorbills and Guillemots who line the cliff tops and ledges around the island. In addittion to this the ever present members of the gull family; Kittiwakes, Lesser Black-backed Gulls, Herring Gulls and the Greater Black-backed Gull.

Larger seabirds such as Fulmars and Gannets can usually be found gliding and fishing around the island. Shags and Cormorants take up position on the surrounding rocks to dry out their wings in between fishing.

Asides from the seabirds, there are large numbers of migratory birds who use Skomer as a stop-over, such as Wheatears, Swallows, and Sedge Warblers to name but a few.

The island is also home to a number of resident birds of prey, with Peregrine Falcons, Buzzards, and Short-eared Owls being regular sightings.