Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Happy New Year

One last tour on the last day of the year saw us heading out in poor conditions. A couple of Otter in the half light was a good start but not the best of views. Our first encounter with a WT Eagle was in the pouring rain - the camera was on 1000 ISO only giving 1/40 second!
We managed to catch up with an adult bird not long after that so it wasn't a bad effort for the first hour. With the tide pushing in I decided to have another go for Otters and we came up trumps. Mum and two cubs plus the dog Otter coming in for a look too. Nice to see the cubs play fighting...
...before heading off for another fishing trip.
We had a clear spell in the weather and, luckily, we picked up Golden Eagle. Quite a few Red Deer were seen along the way but none were better looking than this stag.
This is on facebook now so there should be different photos on there now and again - feel free to join in! All the best for 2015.


That's another year over and not much to report from yesterday except...a nice Glaucous Gull.
A lone Redwing was digging up the dirt at the side of the road...
...while a Mountain Hare loped across the grass before settling down for a nibble.
This WT Eagle was seen earlier in the day when it was still a bit dull. It was still there two hours later so I took a few snaps as there was more light.
Looks like the RB Merg is looking forward to the new year too.
Scores for the year list 145 species and the Patchwork Challenge finished up on 105 species and 131 points.

Tuesday, 30 December 2014


A trip down to Newcastle to see the family saw us heading out into the countryside on the windiest day of our trip. The weather was nice enough and the fish and chips were a real treat! Cresswell Pond was a bit exposed so a few photos of the Common Teal...
...and the Snipe were worth the effort.
A Blackbird that just watched us wandering back to the car got the camera treatment too.
A quick trip into Amble for some sustenance and then down to the beach to watch the waders. Quite a few Turnstone and Sanderling to watch...
...and the occasional Redshank dropping in too.

Saturday, 27 December 2014


I love to hear the Turnstones chattering away to each other as they feed along a shoreline but we get an added extra outside the shop. It's a rocky shoreline so you can hear the 'clack, clack,clack' of the stones being turned over...
...and then they will fly to another area and they look very different in flight.
The sea was quite rough when Doc turned up asking if I wanted to do a bit of Otter spotting. They are not always easy to see in the rough water but we gave it a go and managed to find a family of three that Doc hadn't seen yet. There are two Otters in the photo below but it's not that easy to tell.
Doc managed to get in a position where he couldn't see the Otter when they came ashore so I'm sure he'll enjoy these!

Wednesday, 24 December 2014


Well it's the usual quiet spell at Christmas - I managed to get a photograph with some snow on just before it disappeared. Merry Christmas to you all.
A trip out with Doc saw him trying some unusual parking in the middle of the road so I could take a few snaps of the Buzzard having some breakfast.
The Black-throated Diver is still hanging around in the same area but it never seems to be close enough to shore for a good shot.
A great find in December was a juvenile Greenland White-fronted Goose - I can hear the gasps of excitement - but it really is a good find on my patch.
I didn't notice this WT Eagle was sporting a satellite pack until I looked through the photos. It was a bird released on the East coast of Scotland in 2008 and has now set up territory on Mull.
We watched this Otter from a distance, he knew something was up but couldn't figure it out so he just disappeared. I'm pretty sure it's magic.

Thursday, 18 December 2014


I saw these three Otters heading along the shore so I kept going and walked back to where they were. I arrived at the spot just as they were scent marking and getting ready to leave.
The Grey Herons seem to be flying past every couple of minutes so I had to grab a snap of one.
I was surprised at how nice this Robin looked as it was sitting in a shaded area at the time...
...and this Greenshank couldn't have been in a darker place!
All the stags near the road seem to be fairly small in the antler department but it's better than no antlers at all and not to be sneezed at.
Daylight hours are fairly short now so time really does seem to fly by. It was nice to get one last chance of some Otter shots as this one took a leap.

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

After the storm

The wind blew, the rain fell and there was a fair bit of flashing and banging too but, thankfully, there was no serious damaged caused by the storm. We did get a dusting of snow on the road which gave me the chance to take the Christmas shot of a Robin.
Sadly, there was nothing interesting blown in. It's not too often that the Common Teal come to the near shore but it was fairly sheltered so a few of them took the opportunity.
This bedraggled Buzzard was perched up at the side of the road and he wasn't going to move - he's giving me a good hard look!
A nice close view of an Otter taking it's catch ashore...
...while on a shopping trip was a bit of a treat but the only other decent sighting was a male Hen Harrier and a few Curlew feeding in a field.

Monday, 15 December 2014

Before the storm

The days just before the storm hit were pretty calm and there didn't seem to be an increase of birds at the feeders. They don't get much better looking than a Blue Tit.
There was an increase in the gull population though. There must have been 300 Common Gulls at the head of the loch with another 600 out on the main part of the loch.
The rough weather never seems to affect the seals and Otters. There were plenty of Common Seals to be seen 'bottling' close to shore...
 ...while an Otter swam past keeping an eye on me.

Friday, 5 December 2014

The last one

Plenty of Great Northern Divers to be seen - nice to get one with a fish.
I managed to miss a Golden Eagle photo as the bird crossed the loch a lot lower than I thought. All the gulls, waders and herons all scattered out of the way but I was definitely the last one to see it! You don't see too many Goosanders on Mull but there are regular spots for them in the winter.
Lots of Otter sightings at the moment but it's not always a close encounter. I had to wait a while for this one to climb out of the water...
...and these guys took me by surprise as they clambered over the rock right in front of me.
A Jay was a good find but it wasn't that photogenic with the fence in the way - cracking bird to see though.

Sunday, 30 November 2014

End of November

The weather has been pretty good through November. No complaints on the wildlife front either. The White-tailed Eagle is a regular sight just outside the shop but it was nice to have the camera handy for this one.
Mind you, the rest of the birds are never impressed by a raptor in the air. This Grey Heron was heading into the wood to hide!
A few photos of the view...looking from Glen More down to Loch Scridain.
A popular spot for photographs is the three lochs in the middle of Glen More.
I do prefer to be beside the sea - you can't beat the views when it's flat calm.
I could just sit there all day soaking it up.
There are plenty of Red Deer close to the road now so if you are lucky a close up is always possible.
If the good weather continues I might even get a decent shot of the Red-breasted Merganser.