Tuesday, 17 March 2015


After what seems weeks of rain and wind, a few warm sunny days have lifted spirits.   

The otter cubs can now function independently of their mother.   Yesterday we watched, and filmed, one of them for over an hour fishing at low tide in Loch na Cairidh and Loch Ainort.   The mother was nowhere to be seen.  The cub was quite efficient and caught at least a dozen fish; the larger fish, or maybe just the more awkward ones, were brought out onto a rock for consumption.   I took over 10 minutes of film but as it is on mini DV, digitisation is not straight-forward and will have to wait a few days.  Here are a few still photos taken from some distance and not very sharp.

Then today again at low tide we saw, and filmed (!) both cubs fishing together, occasionally squabbling.  One is more cautious than the other and spends more time eating its catch on the rocks.  I suspect they are fishing at low tide because the kelp, where most of the slow moving fish will be, is in shallow water, and the dive distance reduced.

Later this afternoon we saw both cubs with their mother fishing in deeper water.

I had the moth trap over the last couple of nights, catching a few Mottled grey moths and clouded drabs.   The latter are very variable in appearance.

Clouded Drab Moth
Clouded Drab Moth
Finally its fingers and toes crossed.   The aurora forecast for the next few hours is a staggering 9.... but at the moment there is a lot of high cloud about.   It is forecast to clear later but will the aurora conditions last until then.   A long night ahead.  

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