Wildlife

FEATHER

The estate is reputed to have the highest density of golden eagles anywhere in the British Isles and sightings (given clear weather) are generally a daily occurrence. Sea Eagles, the largest birds of prey in the British Isles, were re-introduced in the 1980's and a number of pairs use the west coast of Lewis as hunting grounds.

There is an abundance of cliff-nesting sea-birds to view in the breeding season. This is best achieved from a boat and it is for this reason that a trip with Sea Trek around the islands or to St Kilda is much encouraged.

FUR and FIN

Red deer hinds live all over the estate and large, transient populations of stags are also seen depending on the time of year and weather. The island's deer are smaller and lighter than their mainland cousins but represent one of the last pure lines of red deer in the British Isles. Sightings are commonplace and a group of hinds and calves are often found directly outside the drawing room window at dawn and dusk.

Seals, basking sharks, minke whales, dolphins and porpoises all inhabit the seas around Hamanavay and are sighted regularly on sea-trips. The sea is full of an amazing diversity of fish and crustaceans. In some years otters are seen in the bay in front of the House.

Extensive wild brown trout fishing is available in season.

FAUNA

The Outer Hebrides are famous for their Machair, the carpet of wild flowers occurring naturally where shell sand is blown over a layer of peat creating a fertile alkaline habitat. The Machair on the estate is designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest owing to its national importance.

The dunes of Uig are covered in this naturally occurring fauna (peaking in July). Lady's bedstraw, plantains, harebell, clover, silverweed, thyme, selfheal, meadowsweet, lesser meadow-rue, lousewort, devil's-bit scabious, field gentian and a wide variety of orchids are all found. The Machair is also home to migrating birds such as Corn Crakes and Ringed Plover.

To see what plants may be flowering in each month visit the Western Isles wildflower website. The hill and moorl and show an array of wild flowers including wild bog orchids and the carnivorous Sundew and Butterwort.



If you are interested in a visit to Hamanavay please check the availability, contact Simon Hunt (the Estate Factor) on 01851 672421 or email us. Simon is available to assist with transfers, 4x4 hire and will provide four days’ guiding to make sure that you get the most out of your visit to Lewis.

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