Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Back from the Bird Fair

We're back from our fifth successful year at The Bird Fair at Rutland Water, Leicestershire. We welcomed over 1000 people to our stand over the three days and thanks to everyone who came to say hello. On Saturday we were joined by a piper who added a touch of Scotland to the fair.

As well as encouraging people to come to Scotland to watch wildlife, this year we were also promoting Scotland Outdoors magazine. If you're interested in Scotland's nature and outdoors, then this is definitely the magazine for you. Four editions a year and an annual subscription of only £10 (usually £3.80 per edition).

Special thanks to the team who helped on the stand (in order of picture above) Robbie Sheddon, our piper, Debby Thorne (Mull Eagle Watch), Richard Rowe (Scotland Outdoors), Caroline Warburton (Wild Scotland), Adrian Davis (Wildoutdoors) and Angela Mercer (Glenloy Wildlife).

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

The Seal and the Octopus...

Check out this great picture of a seal eating an octopus.

It was captured by a passenger sailing with Turus Mara on a trip from Mull to Iona.

There are some other great wildlife pictures from their trips at their 'Island Lass' blog.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Shetland otters...

Check out the adorable otter pictures on Brydon Thomson's Shetland Nature Otter Blog. Is this a perfect job or what!

He writes...
"Finally managed to upload a few images from my Otter antics over passed couple of months. This sequence are from an encounter I enjoyed in late July, of a mother with her two cubs. It was a beautiful still summers night, but unfortunately the light was rank. It was a fantastic encounter none the less, I was with them for nearly two hours, at one point down to about 20feet as the cubs play fought in front of me in a mirror calm rock pool. This family are not animals I know well as they are at a location I do not normally visit, I reckoned the cubs to be about 10 months old".

To see the pictures, click here.

Sunday, 15 August 2010

Latest from Ardnamurchan Charters

Whatever the time of year, there's always great wildlife watching in Scotland, here's an update of the week's sightings from west coast wildlife boat trip operator, Ardnamurchan Charters:

"We've seen bottlenose dolphins in the harbour of the island of Muck (one of the Small Isles) the last few times we've visited which was a lovely way to be escorted in. Although the breeding bird numbers are best at the start of the season at this time of year, the basking sharks are in their highest numbers at the moment and the grey seals out at the Cairns of Coll are getting ready to pup next month."

More info: Ardnamurchan Charters

Friday, 13 August 2010

Hen harrier chicks making good progress at Clyde Muirshiel

The hen harrier chicks continue to do well at Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park, near Greenock, under the watchful eye (well lense) of a camera which is beaming live footage back to the Muirshiel Visitor Centre.

Hen harriers are a scarce breeding species in Scotland. Creatures of the moor, they nest on the ground and feed on small birds and mammals.

At time of writing the first chick had just started feeding for itself. You can follow the chick via the Rangers Blog on the Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park website or visit the centre yourself.

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Summer of Great Wildlife Sightings from the Outer Hebrides

Outer Hebrides based cruise company, Island Cruising have reported a summer of interesting sightings, despite some bad weather.

Skipper and owner, Murdo MacDonald said that this year had been unprecedented for the large number of basking sharks (pictured) in the area, at times seeing 10 individuals together. He'd also had great sightings of orca (killer whales), as well as two sunfish (pictured). These are bizarre looking animals which are found in tropical and temperate waters feed on jellyfish. A few are spotted off the west coast each year although this is at the very tip of their range.

Island Cruising have been running cruises around the beautiful Western Isles and out to St Kilda for many years and offer a range of wildlife, activity and island hopping cruises through the spring and summer season.

More info: Island Cruising

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Calling Wildlife Photographers: red squirrel hide available for hire.

Photography holiday company, Northshots have made their purpose-built red squirrel photography hide available for hire.

Set in a small pine forest clearing in the Cairngorms National Park in the Highlands of Scotland, the hide is perfect for capturing great images at close quarters.

Click here for more details.

Scotland's oldest osprey leaves for her African migration

Lady, the oldest breeding osprey has left its nesting site at Loch of the Lowes in Perthshire. This amazing bird has bred at the nature reserve near Dunkeld 20 times and raised a staggering 48 chicks.

Following a strange illness in June, there is some discussion about whether she will make her 3,000 mile migration to Africa and return to Scotland next summer.

The drama of the Loch of the Lowes ospreys has been followed minute by minute by thousands of people around the world, thanks to a camera in the birds' nest which is beamed live on the internet.

Although the female has left, the chicks are still around and will leave shortly.

Check them out on the Scottish Wildlife Trust webcam.

Monday, 2 August 2010

Festival of Politics: Environmental Photography Workshop

Environmental Photography Workshop
Thursday 12 August, 11.00 (13.00) Committee Room 4 FREE*
Join professional nature photographer and founding director of both the Tooth & Claw predator project and Wild Wonders of Europe, Peter Cairns. Following a short talk by the photographer about recent work, there will be time to discuss with this expert his approaches and techniques in wildlife and environmental photography.

More info: click here.