Glenloy Wildlife highlights w/c 5th September

Published: 14th September 2009

Our latest group of guests enjoyed a great week out with Glenloy Wildlife , despite some rather mixed weather.

Sunday – got soaked walking around Erracht, but still managed to find a group of crossbill and some deer, as well as setting the scene for the week. Much better weather in the afternoon gave us some great views along the Parallel Roads of Glen Roy along with red deer and a very obliging brown hare.

Monday – pouring rain and strong winds drove us east, but not before catching a glimpse of one of the Loch Lochy ospreys, presumably a male – pretty lucky as it must have been on the cusp of departure. We travelled to Loch Ruthven to look for Slavonian grebes, which we had to work pretty hard for amongst the ocean-like waves.We were rewarded with at least 4 adults and 2 juveniles, and a family of reed buntings close to the car park. Our trip yielded further dividends with a red squirrel on the side of Loch Ness and a great view of a small group of sika – 2 hinds and their calves, both females with brightly spotted coats. The waterfalls at Chia-Aig and Foyers were in full torrent and pretty spectacular.

Tuesday – Eagle on the Road to the Isles and large numbers of common seals around Arisaig. Great views of the obese grey seals in Mallaig harbour, diving for discards fromm a newly arrived fishing vessel. We were also on the scrounge and came home with a huge bag full of ocean fresh prawns for dinner. Beautiful field full of Grass-of-Parnassus by the road to Rhu.

Wednesday – Distant divers, more seals and a few terns on trip to Morvern. Good views of otter at the Garbh Eilean hide. Wild goats at Moidart. Beautiful drive in the improving weather.

Thursday. Early start yielded a partial blackcock lek locally, plus roe deer and a departing otter from the heart of Fort William. Boat trip to Rum in rather choppy seas and substantial swell. Hard to pick up any cetaceans, but did see plenty of shearwaters, gannets and a couple of bonxies, as well as the ubiquitous common seals. Two distant eagles over the island – almost certainly goldies, and an unexpected dipper by Kinloch Castle..

Friday. Great views of porpoise in Loch Linnhe in a glassy-calm sea. Flocks of twite on the beach. Enjoyed the sunshine and were able to make the most of the local flora, good numbers of small birds and even a few butterflies, including a late Scottch Argus. An evening bat walk turned up plenty of soprano pipistrelles and a possible Daubenton's, along with a glimpse of our third otter of the week under the Loy Bridge. Rather cold for moths, although a canary-shouldered thorn brightened up the evening.

All Week – The pine marten”boys” were lording it around the Lodge each evening, playing on and around the front steps, and offering great views.