2021 Coll Bird Festival
We hope that we will be able to go ahead with Coll Bird Festival 2021 and so we are going to start planning for it. Assuming it can go ahead, the event will be risk-assessed, including Covid, and any necessary adaptations will be made. However, the festival is largely about being in the great outdoors, which offers us more scope, and our large hall can easily socially distance our guests during talks.
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For more information on what the 2021 programme may look like, please see below. We will aim to mimic what should have been the 2020 Bird Festival in so far as is possible and, at present, the same speakers are all keen to be involved.
In 2019, at least 90 bird species were spotted in one weekend, including corncrake, hen harrier, white-tailed eagle, and so much more. According to the world’s leading corncrake expert (Prof. Rhys Green), Coll is the best place in the UK to spot the elusive corncrake, and with the bird being a key species for Coll we host this festival at the peak time to view the corncrake.
Over the course of a 3-day weekend, our guests are treated to guided walks, guided sea-safaris to neighbouring islands and evening talks by a range of experts. The weekend is topped off ‘Coll-style’ with a buffet and ceilidh at An Cridhe, and a beach clean and free BBQ. Some customers visit us again and again, so we keep the festival fresh with new topics, new walks, or the latest research, each year. Previous walks have included a Skydancer walk and an ‘Off the Beaten Track’ walk, showcasing parts of Coll that many visitors will never see, and our talks, while always including a local theme, are also varied each year. We are grateful to have the support of the local RSPB teams and volunteers, without whom this event would not be possible.
For 2020, we are delighted to have Professor Rhys Green back with us, to speak about the corncrake and the spoon-billed sandpiper. Rhys is currently leading a research project on the spoon-billed sandpiper and has previously regaled us with the latest and most fascinating new insights on the corncrake. John Bowler (RSPB Tiree) will also be back with us bringing a local theme to the talks.