Golden Eagle Observatory to open in Harris


The North Harris Eagle Observatory will be opening later this month.

Situated in a spectacular location in the heart of the Harris hills, the Observatory will provide some of the best opportunities in Scotland for viewing Golden Eagles. With a turf roof , timber cladding and large glazing panels facing up the glen, the observatory is an attractive but unusual structure that will blend into the landscape. Located in the centre of a golden eagle territory, the observatory is an ideal place from which to watch the daily activity of the local pair of golden eagles that nest in the glen.

The observatory will be open to the public at all times, all year round. At certain times the North Harris Ranger will be on hand to help locate the eagles. Inside the building there are interpretation panels giving information about the eagles, their identification and other wildlife in the glen. This is Scotland’s the first year round viewing facility for the golden eagle, our national bird.

With the open nature of the terrain, and hosting one of the highest densities of breeding golden eagles in Europe, The North Harris hills are arguably the best place to watch eagles in Scotland. In addition to the resident pair, numerous immature golden eagles and sea eagles frequent the glen.

It is hoped that the Observatory will be a popular destination for both visitors and Harris inhabitants, enabling more people to view this spectacular predator. Along with other initiatives such as the Harris Mountain Festival, this is one of several North Harris Trust projects aimed at raising the profile of the unique natural history and landscape of the area.

The observatory can be accessed by a short walk up Glen Miavaig from the Huisnish road (B 887), 7 miles to the North West or Tarbert. Entry is free.

The observatory was designed and commissioned by the North Harris Trust who manage the 25,000 hectare community owned estate. The building was constructed by a team from the Councils Outer Hebrides-Managing Employment, Enterprise and Training Programme (OHMEET) led by John Archie MacDonald. OHMEET involves individuals participating in waged placements mainly with an employer in the community or placements such as Comhairle Nan Eilean Siar’s (CNES) - Environmental Task Force Programme. The North Harris Trust are pleased to be involved in this program which creates jobs, provides work experience and skills for the unemployed. The North Harris Trust gratefully acknowledges, Leader, Scottish Natural Heritage and The Brown & Forbes Memorial Trust who funded this project.