28 November 2017
Photographs of puffins taken by wildlife enthusiasts have provided a clue to why numbers of the birds in Britain and Ireland have been falling.
RSPB Scotland said images showing what the birds were feeding chicks suggested that puffins in the Northern Isles were catching less nutritious prey.
The colonies in Orkney and Shetland have suffered some of the most serious declines in numbers.
The photos were taken by 602 people, dubbed "Puffarazi" by the charity.
An appeal yielded 1,402 images of puffins, 517 of which were of birds at sites in Scotland.
Traditionally, puffins feed on a mixture of fish, with nutritious sandeels making up a high proportion of their diet.
Early results suggest that the diet of puffins varies significantly around the UK and Ireland, said RSPB Scotland.
In Orkney and Shetland, puffins appeared to be consistently finding smaller prey compared to most other colonies.