Craigleith is a small island less than half a mile from the Centre, where there is a rich variety of seabirds and marine life. It is a particular hot spot for puffins and is home to our SOS Puffin Project.
Craigleith was once one of the largest puffin colonies in Britain with over 28,000 pairs in 1999. Numbers crashed dramatically due to an alien plant invasion of tree mallow (Lavatera arborea), a giant plant which grows up to 9 feet high, choking the puffin burrows and preventing the birds from nesting and rearing their chicks. Puffin chicks are called pufflings.
The area is also home to around 3,000 grey seals and they can often be seen on the Isle of May, Craigleith and Bass Rock cameras. The seals give birth to their fluffy white pups from early to mid-October until the end of December, live on camera!