Fringe Box



Birdwatcher’s Diary No.7

Published on: 4 Jun, 2012
Updated on: 4 Jun, 2012

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By Malcolm Fincham (reporting on a trip to Scotland)

Unfortunately, I am unable to submit a local report for this week, although I’m itching to see what changes have been occurring in my absence.

Puffin on Handa Island.

However, I have not been idle with my camera as I have just returned from Aviemore, Scotland, visiting Steve Reddick, an old friend of mine from when we used to play football together in the early 1980s.

Steve is also a keen birdwatcher and wildlife enthusiast. He moved to Aviemore 10 years ago and now runs his own wildlife safaris in the area. Click here to see his website.

Red grouse.

I decided to take advantage of his local knowledge to get a few photos of some rather special Scotish species, including Slavonian grebe, ospreys fishing, red and black grouse, red deer and red squirrel, to name just a few.

I was especially pleased to watch an osprey fishing and carrying its catch overhead back home to feed its chicks.


One of the highlights of my visit was to stumble across a ‘rogue’ male capercaillie which thought it was still leching season. That’s a springtime ritual of fighting to compete for females. It had no fear of anything that moved – including us. The only thing we could do was show him respect and let him feel he’d won by returning back up the track we had walked down.

Arctic skua.

I also managed to squeeze into my visit a trip to Handa Island up in the far north west of Scotland, to view puffins, great skuas (bonxies), Artic skuas, Artic terns and so much more…

On a trip to the Isle of Mull I had good views of golden eagle, white-tailed eagle and even three seperate sighting of otter.

I must say, inspite of it being a great stay with stunning views, excellent weather and marvellous wildlife, it’s always so good to be back home. Indeed, “home is where the heart is”.

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Responses to Birdwatcher’s Diary No.7

  1. Steve Balchin

    June 6, 2012 at 10:01 am

    Sounds like you have been having a wonderful time. I am currently watching feeders at my ex-guilfordian birdwatching brother’s house in Dorset, observing greenfinches and goldfinches with various tits. Rather pleasent.