Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Our Annual trip to the Highlands (Braemar) Days 3 and 4

Tuesday (day 3) proved to be a  bad weather day, it rained all day and was very murky, and very difficult to see anything, this was about the best, as we stayed very local and drove around the area and explored the Linn of Dee,

although on our travels we did also see Dipper on the River Dee, Snow Buntings up on Glenshee and a hardy Buzzard out in the murk.

According to the weather forecast, Wednesday looked mostly dry so we made a plan to go to the RSPB Reserve at the Loch of Kinnordy, a lovely picturesque hours drive from Braemar.
As we were leaving the house and putting the days supplies in the car, Jimmy was watching the river, he ran (never seen him move so fast) and told me there was an Otter in the river right in front of the house, I rushed in the house and told Tina and Jo and........

We have stayed in some great places, in the hope of wildlife on our doorstep, but this time the promise delivered! So the day was off to a great start and as we drove alongside Clunie Water, we had some great Dipper sightings,

The weather at this point was OK, however as we descended down from Glenshee the weather worsened and became very foggy, not before though we had a good close up of a very trusting Mountain Hare,
well very happy, with day so far.
The fog though wouldn't budge and although the drive was still great, visibility was very poor. So we arrived at Loch Kinnordy, to find we couldn't see very much, but we persevered and were lucky enough to see two Red Squirrels near the feeders as we approached the east most hide. They disappeared much to quickly for a photo though. The feeders however were busy with Chaffinch, Blue, Great and Coal Tits, Robin, Blackbird, Pheasant and the star for me Tree Sparrows,

you can tell from the drabness of the photos how murky it was and this is highlighted even more by this Buzzard sitting behind us in the trees,
The fields to the east of the reserve held Greylag, Redwing, Fieldfare and a couple of Mistle Thrush.

We then worked the three hides from east to west, plenty of hot drinks were needed as in the fog it was freezing. As I said visibility was poor and you couldn't see very far out into the Loch, so we had to make do with any birds that came close, my scope was redundant and was returned to the car as we passed between hides.
Photo opportunities were few and far between, some birds did oblige, like this Wren,
 Reed Bunting,
 and some Long-tailed Tits.

We did see other birds in the gloom, Bullfinch, Teal, Wigeon, Goldeneye, Tufted Duck, Lapwing, Moorhen and Snipe.

We decided to call it a day and just pop into the Loch of Lintrathen, where the Scottish Wildlife Trust have a couple of hides, again it was very foggy, but we did add for the record a Red-breasted Merganser
 and a Cormorant that decided he didn't want to stay!

After a cuppa we headed back to Braemar, where on the way up over Glenshee, some Red Deer came reasonably close,

Here endeth the second post of the trip!

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