Page last updated at 09:08 GMT, Tuesday, 12 August 2008 10:08 UK

Island bird attack couple rescued

Great Skua (Picture courtesy of RSPB Scotland)
The couple were being attacked by Great Skuas

A couple who became lost on hills on Orkney and were being attacked by birds had to be rescued.

The pair were lost for much of Monday at Hoy and were said to be cold, disorientated and frightened.

The woman had suffered an ankle injury, and they were being attacked by birds - Great Skuas - which were nesting in the area.

The Shetland Coastguard rescue helicopter found the couple and took them to safety.

'Aggressive birds'

Shetland Coastguard Watch Manager Kathy Grant said: "The couple were obviously quite distressed.

"They were suffering attacks from Great Skuas, which are aggressive birds which will dive bomb you if you approach their nests.

"Not only can this be extremely unnerving if you are not used to these animals, they can also cause some fairly serious injuries."

She added: "We always advise walkers to remain on marked paths where possible and to arm yourself with equipment such as appropriate communications devices, a torch, map or even walking flares in the event that you become lost.

"Always wear appropriate clothing and prepare well for the cold and rain."


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