The Isles of Scilly Bird Group (who are celebrating their twentieth birthday this year!), are looking forward to welcoming a buzzing community of birders back to the islands this autumn as safely as possible, and hopefully meeting some new (masked) faces, too.

To help you make the most of your stay, please read our guidance below. You can read our full statement on birding here.

What you need to know:

  • Please adhere to Government guidance when in accommodation, public places, shops and eateries and contact Visit Isles of Scilly or the local council for more information on Coronavirus guidelines. We are encouraging birders to do our whole community proud by following guidance, including wearing masks where required, respecting social distancing guidelines and using hand sanitiser.

  • There’s still plenty to see and do this October. You can enjoy trips to the other islands (masks compulsory when on boats), the farm trails and walks on St Mary’s, wildlife boat trips and the birdwatching hides on Tresco. We’ve pulled together our top ten birding tips for this year. Read more here!

  • Sadly there won’t be a Bird Log this year, you can stay in touch on our website and on social media. There’s a Scilly Birding Facebook group (not affiliated to ISBG); our Facebook page; and follow us on Twitter.

  • Respect local land managers’ guidance when exploring. The birdwatching hides on St Mary’s will be closed. There are signs across the islands highlighting local rules and guidelines about access, face coverings and social distancing, and you can always check online, too.

  • Please report your bird sightings to us, sign up to one of the local WhatsApp channels and don’t be shy to ask other birders what’s about.

  • Pick up a copy of the 2019 Bird and Natural History Review from Lyonnesse House, Lower Strand, St. Mary, Isles of Scilly TR21 0PS, between 10:00 – 19:00. You can also purchase an official ISBG pin badge for £5!

  • Please consider supporting the local businesses who have struggled in this unexpected year.

  • Follow the birders’ code on the Isles of Scilly, and please use common sense and courtesy when birding. Please make sure that others around you have plenty of space to safely view birds, particularly if you have already seen it. Remember – they may need it! If you see a crowd of people forming, consider coming back later or encouraging others (politely) to give others a chance to look. This applies to photographers as well as birders: more than ever, we need to be respectful and aware of each other. If you see a problem forming, be part of the solution and not part of the problem: try and sort the issue there and then by speaking to a local birder, rather than taking photographs, finger pointing or taking to social media.