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Bird Sightings : Hebrides : Dipper

Hebrides bird sightings - Dipper Hebrides bird sightings - Dipper



(White-throated Dipper)

Cinclus cinclus

Gaelic: Gobha-dubh-an-uisge, Gobha Uisge

Photography © Kim Park
Carishader - Uig - Isle of Lewis - Outer Hebrides (Western Isles)
20th January, 2007

Very poor light at the time, so well done Kim for managing to get a photograph!



  • Dipper
  • Cinclus cinclus
  • Gaelic: Gobha-dubh-an-uisge, Gobha Uisge
  • UK: 13 thousand pairs (Summer) BTO
  • UK: Resident breeder
  • WI: Uncommon resident breeder (10-99 breeding pairs) in Lewis & Harris., and scarce resident breeder in Uists.
  • Breeds: Nests in crevice on sheltered rock-face or riverbank. Lays 3-6 white eggs. Resident in UK, Scandinavia, Spain, Asia
  • Small (18cm), dumpy bird with bobbing motion. Short tail. Longish legs. Dark blackish-brown upperparts, belly, tail & undertail. Head slightly lighter brown. Breast & throat white. Seen close there is a reddish band on breast where white meets brown. Sharp dark, bill. White eyelids. Short, rounded wings. Holds tail cocked like a wren.
  • Habitat: Fast-flowing streams, rivers - prefers ones a few metres wide like the Creed or Amhuisuidhe
  • Diet: Insect-eater: sits on rock in river - sights prey on stream-bed & dives in after it. Large invertebrates, caddis flies, walking on stream bed
  • Warbling song. Call is zit,zit


Dipper records in the Western Isles

Cinclus cinclus hibernicus (the Irish Dipper) is an uncommon resident breeder (10-99 breeding pairs) in Lewis and Harris., and a scarce resident breeder in the Uists.

On the chart below the darker the shade of blue the more abundant the Dipper is during a month or the more likely you are to see it.

























(Source: Outer Hebrides Birds Checklist)


Other local bird photographs

Sources of information for the bird sightings section

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