Sunday, 16 July 2017

Island 388 - Long Taing, Skea, North Roe, Shetland

Long Taing is a small low lying uninhabited tidal island linked to the north west side of Shetland Mainland near the farm of Skea, which is part of North Roe district.  It is linked to Mainland by a couple of tombolos, as there is a small rocky outcrop halfway across to it called Bu Taing, which splits the tombolo into two halves.

The island is popular with seals at low tide: as I approached the island I could see at least a dozen seals hauled out on the sandy tombolo.  However while I was still about 400 metres away, they spotted me and all hastily got back into the sea.  They must have good eyesight, as I wasn't making much noise or maybe I was upwind of them.  They didn't go far and most of them were watching me from the water as I crossed the tombolo.  There were a few terns around but they weren't particularly bothered by my presence and I didn't see any eggs but I made sure to keep to below the high tide level as far as possible to avoid any potential nest sites and didn't stay long.

Looking north up the coast of Mainland from Long Taing
The double tombolo with Bu Taing in the middle
Outer Skerry from Long Taing: you can just about see the small lighthouse on it
The inner part of Long Taing from the outer part
Long Taing from mainland
Long Taing and Bu Taing from Mainland

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