Christmas Day there was six of us headed out into the ice and snow to work up an appetite. First on the score sheet for the day was a cracking male Hen Harrier. We watched the quartering for about 10 minutes before it landed and we left it alone. Not too far down the road we clocked 4 Red Deer on the hillside and 2 Otters on the shore. I walked back to get this shot of the Deer.......before having a look at the Otters. The expectations were that this was mother and cub but on a closer look it appears to be a dog and a bitch.The female is fairly well dwarfed by this big male. We stopped for a cuppa, cakes and biscuits before deciding to head for a beach for a change of scenery. It was nearly not such a good idea as we turned off the main route the road turned to sheet ice. The track we had to walk down was not much better and the surface water on the sand was frozen too - slippy, slippy stuff. Was it worth it? We had a Raven flying around us as we started down the track, there were Lapwing, Golden Plover and Ringed Plover in the fields, a single Barnacle Goose was trying to hide amongst the Greylags........and two Golden Eagles put in a brief appearance. Not a bad haul for a bunch of people watching their footing! A slow drive back looking at the scenery - Ben More looking good covered in snow.......a Dunnock scratching around for tasty things.......a Stag with a half decent set of antlers.......and best of all a snowman with a snowdog!We had a quick look at the 3 lochs in Glen More.......as you can see it's a bit cold but we did manage to get a WT Eagle while we were enjoying the view.
Boxing Day was spent resting so after some overnight rain I was out this morning checking the road conditions - lethal! F-stop and PS saved the day by taking us out in their truck. A cracking day again with Red Deer stags to start quickly followed by the same two Otters from yesterday......and a WT Eagle sitting on a high point across the loch. A couple of GN Diver were just close enough for a snap but the BT Diver was too far out - can't grumble though.Another 3 Otters, a mum and two cubs, were too far away to photograph but nice to watch. Plenty of stags on show in the glen with all the better looking ones too far away - no surprises there!Two more WT Eagle sitting together were, as you can see, distant.We headed off to see how the thaw was progressing in Glen More - it wasn't. At our first stop we picked up a Golden Eagle sitting on the ridge and then another one appeared in the opposite direction. We stuck with the bird in the air and it wasn't too long before another bird joined it. They touched talons and called to each other which set off the bird we had on the ridge too - magic stuff. The photo of the two flying birds shows it was an adult and a juv bird.
That's enough excitement for today and thanks for run out!