Thursday, 30 June 2011

~ Skomer Island ~

The old farm on Skomer Island

Yesterday, I finally made it to Skomer Island. It is only about ten miles from where we live to Martin's Haven, where the boat the "Dale Princess" launches to take visitors across to the Island. Over the years we have tried a few times to get there...usually it is weather that has been the problem; last year it was a school which bought all the tickets for their trip that day. You cannot book in advance, and you cannot phone to find out if they are sailing, or if they are sold out. It is first come, first served, and pot luck!

The day was perfect, with the air having a crystal clear, sharp~focus quality that does not happen here very often. I loved everything about it....the boat journey....

...this gull kept perfect pace with us, until finally, ever so gently and skilfully alighting on the bow.

...what we had mainly come to see......


I fell head over heels for these comical, busy, totally fearless little sea~birds.

It was preening.....

.....and sleeping time when we were there.

This little one was so close to the path that I only had to reach out and I would have touched it.
Visitors are not allowed to step off the pathways, as the damage to nests and burrows would be disastrous.

This burrow was on the path edge, and I was so happy when I saw that it was occupied. I asked forgiveness from the Puffin for such rude intrusion. It was only when I looked at the photos later that I noticed the entrance was somewhat heart shaped

The rabbits sunbathe!! I did not take my zoom lens with me so this is a poor shot, but I wanted to share it anyway....
In the Middle Ages, in the 13th Century, rabbits were introduced to the Island. Rabbits were brought to the British Isles by the Normans and were a valuable source of food and fur, their skins being as important as their meat. Many islands were used as Warrens (places where Rabbits were kept) at that time, as the Rabbits could not escape and equally they could easily be protected from poachers. (Copied)

The cliffs across the water here is so like an abstract a way I suppose it is, painted by bird poo, and green algae (I think).

We had not been able to see Razorbills or Guillemots clearly on our walk around the Island, but as we were waiting on the steps to catch the return boat, there they were below us on the rocks. We thought that was a perfect finish to a most beautiful day, but, there was one more gift for us when, after we had all boarded, two seals appeared just feet away and frolicked playfully. I didn't even try to take a photo of them, I just wanted to be, and to watch them, with a full heart and smiling face.

I have just found The Skomer Island Blog


  1. Oh, wow, Helen!! I was wrong about your zoomed photo... What a lovely day you had and all the dear critters who came out to play!! Thanks for sharing :))

  2. oh, puffins! Are they small there? Tim and I went to nova scotia once and took a puffin tour ~ we couldn't land on the island due to it's being protected and mostly cliffs, but the puffins flew out to fish from the sea and we saw them then, so small!

    These pictures are wonderful. :)

  3. We have Puffins up in the north of the state of Maine, I think they're quite sweet, though I've never actually seen one! Looks like a beautiful place, love the sunbathing rabbit!!

  4. Hey hey Maggie :~) Thanks for coming over from Flickr dear was such a good day. x x x

    Hi Brooke ~ yes, so small ~ I was so surprised last year, when I saw them for the first time. (When we found that all the tickets had sold out that day, we went on the boat trip around the island, so, like you, saw them on the sea and flying around....those wing beats are so fast!)They are only about 10 inches high, quite stocky though, and the cute factor is immeasurable :~)x x

    Hi Valerianna ~ ah....those sunbathing rabbits ~ the photo I took was of the closest one ~ they made us laugh...what a wonderful life they have there. x x

  5. Neat set of photos. I too have only seen puffins from a distance and not well enough to judge size. I saw them off the coast of Newfoundland.

  6. have long loved them in
    National Geographic. i am smiling to think
    that someone i know lives nearby. life is
    really something.

  7. real life, in their real

  8. Thanks would be surprised I think.

    Hi Grace..isn't it though. You would love them...they are so comical.

    Ha ha ~ hi Cindy ~ I KNOW...isn't it amazing. Everyone on that return boat journey was smiling.