Isle of May welcomes record visitor numbers – again!

It’s been a fabulous year on the SNH-owned Isle of May National Nature Reserve in the Firth of Forth. Famed for its large puffin colonies, the island welcomed a record number of visitors again this year – the fourth consecutive season the record has been broken.


That winning combination of good weather, flat seas and incredible wildlife has attracted visitors from far and wide.

Our reserve manager on the island, David Steel, said: “It’s been another wonderful season for both the wildlife and human visitors to the island, with over 13,500 people coming out to enjoy this seabird spectacular. A visit to the May is not just about the wildlife; the rugged island, its location and the historic buildings, such as the Stevenson lighthouse which is open to the public, also attract many visitors. It is a real ‘must do’ for many people”.

The popularity of the island has increased in recent years as it supports the largest puffin colony on the east coast of the UK, as well as thousands of nesting shags, kittiwakes, guillemots, razorbills and eiders, amongst other seabirds.

Grey seals are currently gathering on the island and over the next two months more than 2,500 pups will be born on the  Isle of May. The island is now closed for the winter but will reopen from 1st April 2019.

All photos (C) SNH

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