This is a dark coloured medium-sized seabird, with two distinctive long feathers at the middle of the tail. It is about the same size as a common gull, with white patches on its wing tips. Skuas are often seen flying low over the water before pursuing other seabirds such as terns. It twists, climbs and dives, pursuing them until they relinquish their food.
Where to see them
Breeding birds can be found on Shetland and the Orkneys,
When to see them
They nest and breed on the coasts in northern Scotland during summer. In late summer and autumn they are birds of passage down the west and the east coasts of Scotland and in spring are seen in passage northwards.