|First puffin - slightly lost round the back of my cottage.|
|Second puffin enjoying the early sun.|
After a couple of days of one or two brave puffins landing on the cliffs this morning at 0615 (we start early on the May) I opened the back door to see puffins dotted on the brae behind the cottage. 20 or so scattered across the hillside seeming to be enjoying the early sun. By 0800 they were pouring in, the air filled with the riffling whoosh as the zoomed over. For them it is quite a change - for many the last 8 months has been spent on the water, with a bit of flying so to get the legs supporting their weight and balancing their body when on the land requires the firing up of a long dormant programme in their brains. It must feel very strange and need some getting used to. No wonder they are slow in coming onto land, first gathering in groups just off the island until driven ashore by the social pressure of numbers and the drive to breed.
As the morning went on more and more came on, building up a feeling of excitement in their human neighbours, until by early afternoon they all baled out to sea just as the visitor boat came out. So yet again we found ourselves saying to the visitors what they least wanted to hear - "you should have been here this morning!"
|Some made it ashore only to be grabbed by the local greater black-backed gulls.|
|Soon there were loads on the island.|