Ir was another really good day with lovely enthusiastic children and parents. No problem then in spotting various hen harriers and lots of activity between them. Plenty of stags and harems, golden eagles were tough but we got them and same for sea eagle. I suppose the otter sucked all of our attention and we followed him up the coast with a particularly good view as he climbed onto a seaweed covered boulder to mark his territory, then he was on his way again. Dipper, buzzards, kestrels, goosanders, mergansers, curlews, greenshanks, widgeon etc too.
Well we had stacks of activity all day today with fantastic colours and dramatic light. From the off we had hen harriers, stonechats, sea eagle, common seals, lots of kestrels and buzzards. The two otters were terrific with much chasing around, splashing and wandering onshore and grooming. Best of the day was what we had not seen yet and that was the always exciting moment as golden eagles break the skyline, giving long term views which we had to give up on because I was off to the ferry point. So a really good day and people who knew little when they joined the trip and lots when it ended.
Another sunless wild day but Mull always seems to deliver. So very good views of harriers, particularly the beautiful male which we had for some time stroking the grassland looking for voles. Lots of kestrels, teasing otter on a small islet, slavonian grebe, sea eagle sitting and flying, but the golden eagle was elusive all day until, on the way back through Glenmore 3 of them were above us and it felt like the two adults I know out with their youngser which flew low across the glen and back again. We had to chase a ferry as an adult was threatening to glide over us. Pity !
A big window in this poor weather today. Lots of people were out and about at Calgary Beach which is beautiful anytime of year. On the way back we drove along a new forestry track which takes in lots of hills, spruce and larch and so no surprise when we found a large group of crossbills. The male has to be one of Britains most colourful birds with his shades of bright red and big crossed bill. On the way down the west coast two resident golden eagles were chasing a youngster toward the Island of Ulva. Lots of trips this week because of the October Holiday.
Well diabolical weather here again. Not so windy but endless rain and all creatures waiting for a window in the weather, as ancient people would have done thousands of years ago. As did I dashing out to clean my minibus and to hear 4 sea eagles making a racket above the house as they swooped at each other, locking talons and tumbling around the sky. It can be aggression but more often than not it’s just young birds enjoying the power of flight and those amazing talons which are bright yellow and massive. The 4of them were soon relaxed and gliding out to the Island of Ulva still yelping at each other !
Two totally different days of weather, one very wild and the other pretty tame. On both days I had similar jolly groups of people and a good atmosphere between everyone and so the weather didnt really matter. We saw sea eagles of course, golden eagles in the mountains, one day distant the second day was the same eagle and quite close. Otter distant first day and 2 otters very close second. Harriers both days, barnacle goose, goosander, greenshanks, stags with hinds and a really good lunch on both days !! Out of interest one couple had come from Strontian for the trip and were convinced they had seen a wildcat on the way !
I am very busy with trips from tomorrow and all of next week but we have just returned from a few days with our two gorgeous grandchildren Sonnie and Charlie, who like a lot of small children are fascinating and endlessly entertaining. What is it I wonder about the seemingly magic spell that grandchilden cast over their grandparents? Is it their natural openness and innocence? Personally I love the way children say it exactly how it is ?
Great on the trip today as a young female peregrine, buzzard and hen harrier ineterracted for an age with each other at Grasspoint. Eventually the pergrine shot over us and landed on a telegraph pole at the point itself. We also saw red throated diver there. Sea eagles in Glenmore and otter on Loch Beg which lay for a while facing us and curled up just as otters do. Finally top encounter with a male hen harrier sitting on a small tussock of grass 100m out. Really good in the telescope. Tonight it’s a golden sky here on the west coast.
Very good day and enthusiastic people. Harriers, sea eagles and lots of golden eagle sightings in Glenmore. The otter was really good as we followed him along the coastline and into a favourite small islet area where he disappeared. On the way home 5 of us came across another otter with a big catch and coming ashore. Unfortunately he saw us and headed further along the shore to eat his prey on a rocky ledge.
Trips are starting to tail off now and I’m ok with that as even our wildlife goes into a sort of limbo at this time of year. The weather has not been good in the last week either but I have a sunny trip lined up for tomorrow and as Scarlet O’Hara said in Gone with the Wind ”Tomorrow is another day”. I think that despite her broken heart she was an optinst in the end, otherwise she would have said tomorrow’s going to be rubbish as well !!