Tour At A Glance


699 per person (pelagic-only spaces available at 425 which includes Scillonian return crossing)



Single Room Supplement:


Tour Code:

Intermediate with flexible meal times and late finishes.

Group Size:

Twenty plus leaders

Cory's Shearwater Sooty Shearwater Sabine's Gull European Storm-petrel Balearic Shearwater

Isles of Scilly - Pelagic Weekend

Date: 6th - 9th August 2021 - FULL
Leaders: Ashley Saunders & Dr Robert Flood



Wilson's Storm-petrel
This unique birding tour to the Scilly Isles in early autumn offers truly magnificent birding, spectacular scenery and a sense of adventure as we endeavour to savour some of the very best seabirding the UK has to offer. Heading out to the Isles of Scilly onboard the Scillonian MV, an odyssey of pelagic birding awaits, as we have one full and two half day trips arranged to search for some of the most sought after seabirds occurring in British waters. Onboard the Sapphire, skippered by Joe Pender and assisted by renowned seabird expert Bob Flood, we will be searching for the enigmatic Wilson’s Storm Petrel among other species. The Sapphire has been involved for several years in the pioneering pelagic trips for which the islands have become famous, and has recorded several Fea’s Petrel, Swinhoe’s Petrel and Scopoli’s Shearwater as well as regular Cory’s, Sooty and Great Shearwaters among the commoner seabirds. Crucially, we will have the opportunity to study these seabirds at extremely close quarters, something which is not possible from the larger cross-channel ferries that seem to dominate the pelagic scene at the moment. On occasions European Storm Petrels can be seen in their hundreds, and scarcer species such as Pomarine and Long-tailed Skuas and Sabine’s Gull might also be encountered. The catching and tagging of Bue Sharks by our skipper is always an interesting experience! Our base on Scilly will be at Mincarlo and Crebinick Guest Houses on the largest island, St Mary’s. With free time on the islands themselves, we will also have the opportunity to search for migrants and catch up with anything unusual that might be around. This may see us venture to Tresco or one of the other islands. This is a good time for a Melodious Warbler or other vagrant from the continent to appear, and shorebirds can include Buff-breasted or Pectoral Sandpipers. The return crossing on the Scillonian gives us a chance to hone our seabird ID skills once more, and we arrive back in Penzance in the evening. 


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