Kittiwake vs. Guillemots on the Farne Islands

It is extremely difficult to take photographs of birds without a long and expensive zoom lens. It is even more difficult when you are on a boat in the sea. Somehow last summer this was one of the images I found on my camera’s memory card. I must have taken it but I don’t know how it isn’t completely blurred, the boat must have been very close to those rocks.

Anyway, the flock of birds on the rock are Common Guillemots or Common Murre if you’re in North America. There are around 47,000 pairs of these birds nesting on the Farne Islands each year. As for the bird hovering above, that is a Black-legged Kittiwake – one half of over 5,000 pairs.

So in a fight I would conclude that the guillemots (however common there are) would win. Probably why Mr Kittiwake isn’t getting too low, I expect he is just trying to get to the over side of this rocky outcrop where his other half is on their nest!

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