Take a trip to Birsay Moors and escape into the rugged and windswept beauty of a wild moorland. Unwind among the bobbing heads of Cottongrass, as the calls of Dunlin and Golden Plover drift over on the wind and Hen Harriers dance in the skies above you. A dramatic sweep of moorland and blanket bog, dotted with isolated lochans (small inland lochs), Birsay Moors is also home to Short-eared Owls and Red-throated Divers. In the long grassland areas on the edge of the moorland, farmland waders like Curlews and Golden Plovers thrive while Orkney voles hide from the watchful eye of birds of prey above
Birsay Moors is an internationally important site for breeding Hen Harriers, Red throated Divers and an array of moorland birds. It also hosts one of the largest Hen Harrier communal winter roost sites in Scotland. Our work is focused on providing an undisturbed and protected haven for the range of species which find a home here. Areas of eroded blanket bog have also been targeted for restoration work.
On the grassland fringes, light grazing by cattle produces the ideal conditions for breeding waders. Some areas are left ungrazed to provide the long grass that Orkney voles love, they in turn are an important food source for birds of prey.