The Annual Puffin Fest

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From April to the very last days of July, the back or west side of Inishturk is a mass of seabirds, some on the water some in the air. On our last visit here this year some of us stood in the bow of the Brazen Hussy, a few others on the flying bridge while Shane our skipper very carefully navigated the boat through hundreds of young and adult puffins on the water.
The air was crowded with kittiwakes and fulmars circling the boat, while guillemots, razor bills and the inimitable puffins were passing overhead with food for their young to the cliff nests and burrows on the slopes of the island.

It is a bird watcher’s dream. So many species and so close to our heads. Cameras and videos were clicking and whirring while Shane then brought our boat into a tiny side bay, only feet from the cliffs that stretch 450 feet vertically into the air above us. A cave is now visible low to the left, the water clear as crystal to the bottom below. In front of us a near vertical slope of green between two cliffs where some of the puffin burrows are located. Almost…..almost close enough to touch. A magical moment every year.

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