Male great skuas
find divorce expensive, but that could be because the divorces were losers from the start, says Furness, who notes that divorced males tend to take longer than widowed birds to pair up again.
PUT that storm petrel down not a demand I issue everyday, but it had little effect on the brute of a great skua
that had pounced in the Atlantic swell I was seawatching in gale force winds off Aird An Runair, the most westerly tip of the Outer Hebrides, where Mrs D and I were enjoying our summer break.
They were suffering attacks from great skuas
, which are aggressive birds which will divebomb you if you approach their nests.
One suffered an ankle injury when they were dive-bombed by Great Skuas
during a walk on the island of Hoy in Orkney.
Was trying to tell the office about the great skuas
I saw flying round Handa Island but Sid Voale-of-stock-control said: "What's great about them?
On Inishark island off the Connemara coast, the presenter risks the wrath of dive-bombing great skuas
as they protect their nest.
Bird life teems in the area and several pairs of great skuas
nest along the coastal heathland between Sheigra and Sandwood Bay and on islands.
Hermaness National Nature Reserve, Unst Bird haven is home to the third-largest colony of great skuas
and 25,000 pairs of puffins.
Individual specialization as predators of seabird chicks and eggs has been reported for a number of marine birds including Kelp Gulls (Yorio and Quintana 1997, Quintana and Yorio 1998), other gull species (Harris 1965, Hatch 1970, Parsons 1971, Fuchs 1977, Hulsman 1977), and Great Skuas
(Stercorarius skua) (Votier et al.
Usually the great skuas
would jostle with the other birds that swarm around boats to pick up the fishermen's unwanted catch, but smaller catches have led to the predators turning on smaller birds for food.
Another Balearic shearwater and a storm-petrel were off the Llyen's Porth Ysgaden, while four great skuas
off Criccieth, an Arctic skua off Bardsey Island and dozens of Manx shearwaters from Penmaenmawr were the seawatching highlights before the tail-end of Hurricane Bill arrived mid-week.
Records stretching back 30 years indicate a tricky problem for marine conservation: When fishing vessels discard less fish-waste material, scavenging seabirds called great skuas
attack and kill more neighboring seabirds.
Even rare Great Skuas
- famous for dive-bombing walkers - nest here, while Storm Petrels are found on Mousa.
Weekend gales brought Little Auks off Rhos Point, the Little Orme and Point Lynas, Great Skuas
in Holyhead Bay, and Little Gulls in Bull Bay and on flooded Glaslyn Marshes.
Unst does make plenty of guest appearances in his current show, including an ode to the "bonxies" or Great Skuas
, which notoriously divebomb anyone who comes near their nests.