We all at sometime dream of getting away to a remote island, perhaps of even owning a few acres of beautiful coastline. Many of us too dream of setting up our own nature reserve and watching it develop. Very few of us achieve either. In 1977 John Holloway moved to Stronsay and his own dream was realised. Stronsay has since entered into ornithological folklore.
John Holloway is author and illustrator of the classic 'Fair Isle's Garden Birds' and 'To Fair Isle and Back'. The Stronsay Bird Report 2002 is now available and is a must read.
Where else can you read of breeding Icterine Warbler or the astonishing news that not one but two Rufous Turtle Doves had already made landfall on Stronsay well before the memorable Orkney bird.
Add a Spanish Sparrow, White-billed Diver, Collared Flycatcher, a couple of Gyrfalcons and lots of other great rarities and you'll have made up your mind for where to bird next before you can put this report down. And if that's not enough each report comes with a unique cover illustration.
If you haven't yet birded Stronsay, it's not too late. Stronsay is 40 miles NNE of John O'Groats, six miles long with 45 miles of coastline. The reserve offers limited accommodation, whilst day visitors are welcome at any time. Contact John (tel.no: 01857 616363) if you're thinking of visiting and he will "put you in the know". Even if you can't visit you can still get a copy of the 2002 Stronsay Bird Report (price £6). Each comes with a unique cover illustration from John making it a must-have.