Record visitor numbers for Isle of May

A record number of people visited the Isle of May this year, with a total of 10,800 visits made using the May Princess (above), RIB Osprey and Scottish Seabird Centre boat.
A record number of people visited the Isle of May this year, with a total of 10,800 visits made using the May Princess (above), RIB Osprey and Scottish Seabird Centre boat.
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Over 10,000 people visited the Isle of May in 2013, breaking the record for the National Nature Reserve by more than 1500.

A total of 10,800 visitors made the trip to the island on the May Princess, the Scottish Seabird Centre boat and the RIB Osprey, bolstered by 111 kayaks and a number of small privately-owned boats.

David Pickett, Isle of May reserve manager, said: “It’s been a terrific year for visitors to the May; the fantastic weather played a part, but it’s also no doubt due to the hard work of the boat owners and crews to improve visitors’ experience to the island.

“I can’t pick just one highlight from the year, but a few of my favourites have to be listening to Karine Polwart sing her Isle of May song in the South Horn, seeing a pod of 15 sperm whales from the island, and seeing how excited people were watching the young grey seal pup on the Isle of May seal open day.

“There’s always something special to see on the May, so if you want to see what all the fuss is about, why not put it high up your bucket list and make plans for next year?”

Known locally as ‘The May’, the small island sits on the edge of the Firth of Forth. The island’s importance for sea birds has drawn scientists to its shores for many years, and the May is home to the oldest continuously running bird observatory in the UK.

The popular visitor attraction is also a regular haunt for grey seals, often seen lounging on the shoreline rocks.

To keep up with what’s happening on the island and to find out more about it, people can have a look at the Isle of May blog at http://isleofmaynnr.blogspot.co.uk/.