Sunday started off a bit grotty but by the time the guests were due to arrive the view was looking a bit like this - rain leaving, blue sky arriving.
The main aim of the day was to find Otters and did we find them - of course we did. At the first stop of the day I was busy going through the spiel of how to find Otters, their habits etc and the cry went up 'I've got one!'. We hopped out and got decent views as the Otter fished around the shallows. It started to move off to the right and crawled out on the land where it stopped and gazed into the eyes of a Red Deer! The Otter skirted round the deer and out of sight before I took this photo. You can just make out the deer in the middle of the photo - what's he doing there?!
With no Otter to look at we decided to move on but just as I pulled away I noticed some movement on the rocks in front. Otter number 2 was rolling around on the shore. Back out with the scopes for another good gander before this one slipped out of sight too. We moved on quite pleased with the way the day had started and before long we were looking at Otter number 3!! This one was moving up the shore with a purpose so we tried to get in front but he was having none of it. We left him in peace.
Another mile up the road and we were into Otters number 4 & 5 as a mum and cub performed superbly. the guests were captivated and consequently we stood looking for a good hour as they fished, crawled out, washed themselves, scared the Heron and went back to fishing again. We managed to escape the Otters captivating allure, eventually, and moved on to the WT Eagle site. We found the female sitting at the top of a tree posing beautifully before we picked up the male in flight and then spotted the youngster sitting below where the male bird landed - phew!
The male was sitting in a prime location so we headed off for a closer look - magnificent!!!
Well, how do you follow that? First of all we picked up another 3, yes three, Otters. They were moving away from us and it didn't look as though they would be giving anywhere near the performance we'd just had so we just gave them a quiet wave and moved on. We checked out the waders and found a Knot amongst the small flock of Redshank, 3 RB Merganser, 4 Common Teal and a Greenshank that hid! We were heading for lunch after looking at the Seals and wondering what else we could see when I was told to stop so we could check out two black shapes on a hillside. It was only two Golden Eagle! Close Golden Eagle!
It was a bit of a quiet lunch but we needed time for reflection and a bit of flower watching to calm things down. A 'find the deer on the hillside' challenge passed a wee bit of time and we located a few hinds in the process. We found another two WT Eagle sitting on the rocks just after lunch - yawn. Just kidding:-)
We travelled on in search of smaller things so there were plenty of Chaffinch, Meadow Pipit and a cracking Stonechat. We pressed on to find another two Golden Eagle sitting on a distant hill top before picking up plenty of Mountain Hares. What a day and we still had to get back yet. A Red-throated Diver had been requested so as the wind dropped and the loch became still we hauled in and scanned the water as the dreaded midge ate us alive. We found the crazy loon that was calling and also bagged a raft of Eider before we ran away. The final sighting of the day was this Golden Eagle that was one of the two we'd seen earlier.
You'll not get a better day out than that, until the next one anyway!