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Kegelrobben in Bay's Loch bei Berneray

Grey seals in Bay’s Loch near Berneray

Waters North Atlantic
Archipelago Outer Hebrides
Geographical position 57° 43′ 12″ N, 7° 11′ 24″ WCoordinates 57° 43′ 12″ N, 7° 11′ 24″ W
Lage von Berneray
Area 10.1 km²
Highest elevation Beinn Shleibhe
93 ma.s.l
Inhabitants 138 (2011)
14 inhabitants/km²
Main site Borve and Rushgarry

Berneray (Scottish Gaelic: Beàrnaraigh, from the Old Norwegian for Bjørn’s Island) is an island in the Outer Hebrides in Scotland.


Aerial photo

Berneray is located in the Sound of Harris between the islands of Lewis and Harris to the northeast and North Uist to the southwest. It is closer to North Uist and is therefore part of the Uist group of islands. Berneray is one of two inhabited islands in the Sound of Harris

Berneray is 10.1 km² in size. The highest elevation is Beinn Shleibhe at 93 metres, second highest is Borve Hill at 85 metres. In 2001, 136 people lived in the two scattered settlements of Borve and Rushgarry

To the west of the island is a sandy beach about five kilometres long. Berneray is characterized by the soil type Machair from blown shell remains, which was cultivated here particularly thoroughly by mixing with seaweed and leaving it fallow at times.


Berneray has been settled for a long time. Numerous sacred sites, stone circles and traces of the Vikings bear witness to this. The island is considered the birthplace of the legendary giant Angus MacAskill

In 1999 the road causeway Berneray Causeway was opened between Otternish on North Uist and Berneray.


The main sources of income are fishing, agriculture (mostly by crofters) and tourism. The construction of the Berneray Causeway improved the accessibility of the island and thus enabled a faster turnover of goods.

Flora and fauna

The flora is quite diverse thanks to the partially fallow land. In addition to seals and grey seals, there are numerous bird species, including geese, swans, waders and seabirds. Otters live in the sea around the island


Some islands of the Outer Hebrides have similar names. Northwest of the Lewis region are Great Bernera and Little Bernera. Barra Head in the south of the archipelago is occasionally called Berneray. In addition, to the southwest of Lismore lies the small island of Bernera Island. For distinction Berneray is also called Berneray, North Uist

Web links

Commons: Berneray– Collection of images, videos and audio files