Flora & Fauna Forays

red deer on hillside

Red deer hind on the hill behind the house

What you can do

  • Get out and about and keep your eyes skinned for mega fauna such as otters, red deer, roe deer and seals.
  • Marine animals such as seals, porpoises, dolphins, whales and basking sharks are regularly seen around the coast.
  • The flora of Skye is rich, especially in traditionally managed meadow grasslands.

Where you can do it

  • All over the Island.
  • Boat trips from Elgol are the only way to see most of the marine mega fauna and even then you have to be in the right place at the right time.
  • A boat trip is the best way of getting close to seals which are otherwise quite shy.
  • Reliable otter locations are marked on the map in the activity room.

What we provide

  • Binoculars including smaller size for children.
  • Books, maps and guides for plants, marine animals and other fauna.

Advice about the activity

  • Get great pictures of seals from the local boat trips but seeing the less common animals is always a bit hit and miss.
  • Patience and sharp yes plus good optics are essential to see otters – you can get close using “you move when they dive” technique and standing perfectly still when they are on the surface. – the animals can be remarkably tolerant of nearby humans.
  • Deer can turn up at the most unexpected times and places – in the garden, on the road or down on the croft.

Things to consider

  • The more you look, the more you’ll increase your chances of seeing something.
  • Big marine animals, other than common seals, are unpredictable and so it is probably best to consider seeing them as a bonus rather than a certainty.
  • You can increase the chances of seeing most of these species by going to the best places at the right time – something we have been trying to get right for over 40 years and we are happy to share that experience with our guests but, please be aware that it doesn’t always work out!

Seals on the Scavaig shore