The Shetland Islands archipelago is the UK’s most northerly island group, made up of over 100 islands, of which only 15 are inhabited. Positioned on the same latitude as Greenland, Shetland is closer to the Arctic Circle than to Manchester. Although a large island group stretching 96 miles (155km), Shetland has an even larger coastline at 1,697 miles (2,702 km). This coastline encompasses a variety of wild coastal habitats, supporting a rich variety of life.
Being a Shetland Islands based ecological photographer I spend most of my time exploring Shetland’s wild coast. I have an obsession with Shetland otters, spending hundreds of hours every year following and photographing this charismatic mammal. Shetland boasts the highest density of otters in Europe, and the coastlines are some of the best shores I have ever worked on to photograph otters. Otters in Shetland are well known for feeding during the day and with my intimate knowledge of Shetland otters and their habitat almost ensures encounters with this alluring animal every day.
Shetland seabirds are another favourite of mine. Every summer over a million seabirds come to Shetland to breed on the rugged coastline, creating one of Shetland’s wildlife spectacles. Dramatic sea cliffs teeming with thousands of nesting gannets, charismatic puffins on the grassy sea cliff tops making for an unforgettable experience. Shetland is a great place to explore wild places with an abundance of wildlife.