A hilly island in the Orkney Islands, Rousay lies to the north of the Mainland of Orkney from which it is separated by Eynhallow Sound. It rises to 250m (820 feet) at Blotchnie Fold and has an area of 4860 ha (12,009 acres). In the southeast lies the Trumland RSPB Reserve where merlin, short-eared owl, red-throated diver and golden plover can be seen. The island also has a wealth of archaeological sites including the Midhowe Broch and cairn, burial cairns at the Knowe of Yarso, Blackhammer, Taversoe Tuick and the Knowe of Lairso, the Neolithic village of Sourin and the crannogs of Wasbister Loch. Once sustaining a population of nearly 1000, this declined to 237 (1961) and 181 in 1971. It has subsequently stabilised; 209 (1981), 217 (1991), 212 (2001) and 216 (2011). Rousay today has a total of 217 people living and working on its narrow agricultural margin. There is car ferry link with Tingwall on Mainland Orkney.

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