Saturday 29 April. Benmore Gardens and surrounding area (Cowal). Led by Steve Petty (contact details: phone 01369 810024, email ). Meet in the Benmore Gardens car park (grid ref NS142866) at 10.00 hrs. Lunches will be available at the cafe. Please let Steve know by 24 April if you would like places at tables for lunch booked.

Saturday 10 June. Loch Lomond RSPB Reserve. Led by Anne Archer (contact details: phone 01700 811611, email ). Meet at the RSPB visitor hub car park. Please contact Anne if you wish to go on this trip as places are limited. RSPB will charge £5 per person for a guided tour. Wellies may be required and walking will be across open ground off paths.

Sunday 25 June. Skipness (Kintyre). Led by Katie Pendreigh (contact details: phone 01583 441359, email ). Meet in the car park beside the entrance to Skipness Castle at 10.00 hrs. The Sea Food Cabin will be open for lunch.

Saturday 29 July. Clachan (Kintyre). Led by Malcolm Chattwood (contact details: phone 01546 603389, email ). Meet in the Clachan Village Hall car park at 10.00 hrs (Grid Reference NR766562).

Saturday 26 August. Colonsay. Led by David Jardine (contact details: phone 01546 510200, email ). A full-day visit with transport provided. Further details from David Jardine. You must book with David in advance to attend this trip, as numbers are limited by vehicle spaces.

Rookery Survey

Don’t forget the Club Rookery Survey in April – check the details in the March Eider.  All records of rookeries can be submitted to David Jardine at


The autumn indoor meeting, including the Annual General Meeting of the club, will be held on Saturday 4 November 2017 at the Cairnbaan Hotel, near Lochgilphead. The programme will be posted in June 2017.

The spring 2018 indoor meeting will be held on Saturday 3 March 2018 at the Inveraray Inn, Inveraray.

Skills and techniques for BTO bird surveys

Find out how to make your birdwatching count!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017 –10:00 to 17:00 Event times Wednesday 10th – 10:00 to 17:00 Level:  Beginner Improver Event host / presenter:  Ben Darvill Availability:  Places available. Pricing £5 nominal fee to assist with covering running costs

Booking contact details:  Anne Cotton on 01786 466560 or email   Venue Website:

Additional information Are you keen to ‘make your Birdwatching count’ by contributing to BTO’s monitoring schemes and surveys? Come along to brush up on your skills ahead of the breeding season and gain the confidence to take part in the European Breeding Bird Atlas, through BirdTrack, plus WeBS and perhaps also the Breeding Bird Survey. The day will combine indoor and outdoor sessions (weather permitting) and will have a focus on encouraging participation. The course is suitable for improvers and experienced birdwatchers who want to contribute to conservation through recording and monitoring. Please bring suitable outdoor footwear and clothing and a packed lunch.

Location Isle of Seil Community Hall, 34 B844 Ellenabeich, Seil Island, Oban , Argyll and Bute, United Kingdom, PA34 4RQ

SOC & Isle of May Bird Observatory, Young Birders’ Training Course 2017

The SOC and Britain’s oldest continuously accredited bird observatory, IoMBO, are working in partnership for the fourth year running to offer six more young birdwatchers the chance to participate in a week-long sponsored training course. The course is being run by the SOC and the IoMBO and will take place on the Isle of May this 1-7 July.
Open to 16–25 years olds, the course is the only one of its kind in the UK and will provide an opportunity for successful applicants to gain invaluable first-hand practical experience of recording birds and other wildlife, experience of species counts, monitoring, ringing, trapping, ageing and sexing birds, as well as the chance to participate in activities such as visible migration watches and co-ordinated sea-watching counts.
The course will not only provide a platform for participants to pursue a future in wildlife monitoring and conservation, but a network of contacts to assist the students on their journey.
More information about the opportunity and links to the application form can be found here: or obtained by emailing . *The closing date for completed applications is 5pm, Monday 1 May 2017*. Completed forms should be emailed to   or posted to: Jane Cleaver (Confidential), SOC, Waterston House, Aberlady, EH32 0PY.
Contributing organisations: The course will be carried out under the expert tuition of representatives from the SOC and IOMBO, with additional support and resources provided by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH) staff on the island. Please see website for full details.
The course is being funded by the SOC, made possible by generous individuals who have left legacies to the Club.
Minimum criteria to be awarded a place on the course: Candidates must be aged between 16 and 25 years of age on the day of trip departure (written permission will be required from a parent or guardian if under 18 years of age), must be residents of the UK/Ireland and must be available for the full duration of the course (Saturday 1st July – Saturday 7th July 2017). Successful applicants must be able to make their own way to and from Anstruther, Fife, and make a personal contribution of £25 (towards food & drink supplies). Applicants seeking support to fund their travel costs to Anstruther should research funding support. For example: