Its Thursday the 5th and just after coming in from the action packed moorlands on Mull watching 6 Short-Eared Owls, 3 Hen Harriers and a Golden Eagle in a less than two hour evening spell I log onto the internet to read this article regarding Englands Harriers..Hen Harrier Update...where have they all gone?.
A huge high to a huge low thinking the birds I watched tonight could consist of the whole English population in the future or worse if they are to be extinct as a breeding species. The moors were brim full of life this evening with SEO courtship behaviour with a male bird signing and I also witnessed a male Hen Harrier protecting its nest site by harassing and display calling at a Red Deer stag...amazing.
The English White-Tailed Eagle introduction program has taken a step forward (Link) With the University of Cumbria getting involved in the research and effects of the scheme if it was to go ahead. With the Bassanthwaite Ospreys bringing in 2 million a year during their 6 month visit the income the eagles will bring for 12 would certainly be huge figures. As it is quoted in the Cumberland News article these birds are our lions, people pay huge money to see Lions in Africa, England should have their huge Eagles again.
Anyway the Easter holidays are upon us and the tourism is hotting up along with the wildlife. Also a 20 degrees shift in temperature, more eagle encounters, great sunsets and early season Sea Life Survey trips...
click on photos for larger scale...
|Port Langnamull sunset...|
|Wispy clouds saturating sunset colouration|
The sun was starting to drop so we headed towards Langnamull on the glen road and reached the woodland car park in good time to head down to the shore line. Half way to the coast and I realised I had left my iphone back at the car so I ran back to make sure it was safe and there it was lying on the car roof...idiot. I ran back down to meet Ruth and we caught the sunset just in time to capture some nice colours. A flock of 10 Grey Wagtails flew overhead heading east and a single Mountain Hare was down on the beach. As dusk appeared we heard a distinctive squeaking call behind us...Otters! we headed over and watched a family of three working the rock pools for any crustations they could feed on. Back at the car and 5 Tawny Owls were interacting very loud in perfect still conditions.
|WT Eagle close showing at Ardmore|
|This one is for John Milo|
|WTE and half moon crescent|
|Fresh water stream running into the sea...|
|Rock pools on Langnamull, Otters seen feeding in them later on|
|Another angle on Langnamull|
|myself Kayaking on LNK|
|Slither moon crescent with Venus|
|Full night sky over Ben Hiant, Ardnamurchan|
|Rhuba Na Gall lighthouse with Sound of Mull and Ardnamurchan in backdrop|
|LNK Sunset with Ruth on Kayak|
|Gribbun cliffs on the left, great light|
|Craigs Landrover parked by LNK at dusk|
|Goldie through the conifers...|
|What a bird...|
|WTE, blue wing tag, female at Ardmore|
|SEO, one of six seen in a two hour evening spell|
|Looking across to Isle of Iona and its famous Abbey...|
|Durat Castle with Cal Mac ferry snowy western highlands|
|Durat castle panoramic|
|Tobermory looking north|
We headed back after an amazing couple of hours and as I stopped to take a picture of a Raven before realising I didnt have my camera, gaad I left it back where we were watching the owls! I headed back in the car and there the camera was lying on the side of the track, lucky. I am getting so forgetful I think if you had to screw your limbs in place every morning I would just forget too and roll down the stairs ready for the day ahead.
Got back to the flat to find Lydia and Ruth there and we watched Lost Land of the Wolves with Gordon Buchanan. As we watched it I kept thinking about those Deer by the harrier nest and how much Mull could do with a few Wolves to balance things up!
|Fulmar showing well from boat|