Category Archives: Nature

Loch of the Lowes

Blog #20

Yesterday I went to Loch of the Lowes which is a Scottish Wildlife Trust  (SWT) reserve  to see a pair of Ospreys which have nested for 4 seasons. I didn’t just see Ospreys on their nest but was lucky enough to see lots of other wildlife around the reserve including blue tit, coal tit, great tit, treecreeper, chaffinch, yellowhammer, great spotted woodpecker, red squirrel, robin, mallard, pheasant, goldeneye, tufted duck, great crested grebe, mute swan and many other species of plant, tree, birds etc!

 

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Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major)

 

I arrived around 11:30am when I stepped out of the car I saw the very short path to the visitor centre which then led to another very short path where to Osprey hides were. I think this is a great place to see the Ospreys and other wildlife as it takes no more than 1 minute to get to the hide from the visitor centre!!! The centre also has a live osprey camera with a bird feeding station.

Once I’d left the visitor centre and walked into the hide I immediately saw the female osprey on the nest! Within 10 minutes the male arrived and they started mating. The SWT think there will be eggs within a week. Definitely worth a visit!

 

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Ospreys (Pandion haliaetus)

 

I then went to the other hide as the current hide was getting very busy. The other hide was about a 30 second walk away and was ideal for counting water birds like ducks and swans etc. Then unexpectedly the male Osprey flew right in front of the hide and I managed to get a quick shot through the hide window!

 

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Osprey (Pandion haliaetus)

 

As it was a family day out we decided to have one last look in the visitor centre before heading off and leaving the Ospreys to do their business whilst we went to Loch Faskally.

The car park we parked in was looking on to a small loch called Loch Dunmore where we saw a couple of little grebes, a few tufted ducks and two mute swans which had a nest. After we scanned the loch for species we headed off onto the other path around Loch Faskally.

The walk near Loch Faskally took around 3 hours but well worth it as we saw some great tits, coal tits, blue tits, robins and other common corvid species in the woodland area but most interesting was probably the fungi species like hoof fungi and LOADS of Scarlet Elf Cup fungi in the one area on mossy logs! I recon there were about 35 separate cups of Fungi spread out in a small patch which is the most I have ever seen!

(click photos for a larger view)

After 3 long hours walking near the loch we eventually got back to the car and went for a meal before arriving back home to Glasgow at 9:30pm.

 

Why is dust free bird seed the best?

Blog #19

Today, lots of bird seed bought in shops/online is in good condition for birds and other wildlife; however some seed on sale is not dust free. The dust is just lots of tiny broken bits of debris which accumulate and lay on the seed giving a powdery appearance – this has been proven to damage birds’ respiratory systems. The dust is really damaging and difficult to remove so this causes long term effects. Continue reading Why is dust free bird seed the best?

100 Nest Box Challenge: Linn Park Event

Blog 18 (part 2)

 

When I first launched my challenge 11 weeks ago, I’d planned to hold an event in my local park (Linn Park) to promote National Nest Box week (14 – 21 February). With the support of The Friends of Linn Park (FoLP), Glasgow City Council Ranger Service and the Glasgow RSPB Group we held an event on Saturday 17 February where members of the public could find out more about the birds that live in the park as well as having the chance to buy a box for their own garden or sponsor one that would be put up in the park. Continue reading 100 Nest Box Challenge: Linn Park Event

My 100 Nest Box Challenge

Blog 18 (part 1)

 

Why am I doing this?

During 2017 I visited many fantastic wildlife reserves across the UK as well as taking part in the BTO Bird Camp in May.  Inspired by my experiences, I decided I wanted to give something back to some of the charities that do such great conservation work. So ……. the 100 Nest Box Challenge was born! Continue reading My 100 Nest Box Challenge

Blog #17 – UK Fungus Day

Its UK Fungus day! I just had to write a blog. The UK has over 15,000 different species of wild fungi. Personally I think that is really cool but when some people they hear the word ‘Fungus’ they think it’s disgusting. Really, it’s incredible and very important to our Ecosystem. We also eat various mushrooms.

Continue reading Blog #17 – UK Fungus Day