This Eigg blog post comes from Kirsty, one of our two Conservation Volunteers for August. Here Kirsty talks about our Hen Harrier Day event.
Hen Harrier Day is a nationwide campaign to raise awareness of the persecution of Hen Harriers. This year it took place on Sunday 6th of August with events happening throughout the country. Hen Harriers are a bird of prey species that used to be widespread over Britain. They live in areas of low vegetation and the sexes are distinct from each other. Males are light grey in colour and females/juveniles are brown with a white ring on their tail. The Hen Harrier population in Britain has been declining due to illegal killings associated with grouse shooting. This has lead to last year only having 4 pairs on Hen Harriers in the whole of England!
Here on Eigg, persecution isn’t a problem for Hen Harriers and this year there has been 2 pairs and a possible juvenile sighted. This success makes Eigg a great location to promote Hen Harrier Day. Although the weather was not on our side, we still had a number of keen visitors at the stall and joining the ranger on her guided walk to try at spot the impressive bird of prey.
We didn’t manage to spot any Hen Harriers on the walk. However, the event was successful in raising awareness of the species and making locals and visitors alike appreciate the population on Hen harriers here on Eigg.
Kirsty Maden, Eigg Conservation Volunteer