12/06/18. The Machair at Dusk!! Aird a’ Mhachair, North Uist.

Lots of seabirds and other birds calling after the sun goes down.   Down a track that leads to the MoD testing area.  The microphones are in the field.  I am sitting in the car for 3 hours trying not to disturb what’s going on.   Unlike the night before, this was a very still night, with only a light breeze.

There are lapwings (close and far), oyster catchers, snipe (far and very near!) , corncrake (in many different places), gulls and many other birds active with the sound of the waves in the background.   And there is the ocean, and cows and IMG_4821more.

This is an extraordinary place.   This recording summarises 3 hours of listening from 10pm to 1am into about 12 minutes.  It is presented in 1 minute samples, in the order they were recorded, with an average of about a 15 minute interval between each one.

The landscape is unique with soil formed of fine particles of broken shells. It is rich in plant and animal life, and comes alive in spring with wildflowers. It is also one of the few places in the UK where the corncrake still flies in from Africa to breed every spring.

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