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Last Updated: Monday December 22 2008 13:26 GMT

Bags needed to save baby puffins

An adult puffin

If you fancy doing something different during the Christmas holidays, how about trying your hand at sewing to help save lots of lost puffin chicks?

Dozens of the baby birds on the remote Scottish isle of St Kilda get confused by lights in the rangers' buildings and end up on land, instead of out to sea.

The National Trust for Scotland says people can help to save the birds by making cotton drawstring bags for them.

The rangers use the bags to keep the pufflings safe after they're rescued.

The tiny chicks can then be taken back to the coast and released into the water, where they belong.

Puffin facts
A puffling on St Kilda
Their teeth point backwards
They're only about 30 cms tall
A baby puffin is called a puffling
Their bills can hold lots of fish

St Kilda is a group of islands that's home to about 500,000 seabirds, including thousands of breeding puffins from April to August.

Susan Bain, from the trust, said they always tried to use as few lights as possible in the rangers' buildings, but they still keep finding birds who've gone off-course.

"Every puffling is precious and we rescue every one we can," she said. "It is really important that we make the release of these birds as stress-free as possible.

"The bags really seem to work well and we need to replenish our stock for the summer season."