Wildlife Diary: 21st December

The midwinter Solstice is tonight and it will be the longest night of the year, after which the sun will start to gradually return – not so very long until spring and our Ospreys hopefully return. Wildlife is well attuned to these seasonal changes, for example we know many mammals moult in response to day length, rather than just temperature. Under our artificial lights we may not notice the subtle change in day length but they will!

 Here at Loch of the Lowes many birds are still very active and even the squirrels are still feeding and caching food, as there is a good constant supply here, whereas those in leaner areas may already be in torpor for the winter.

Recent bird highlights include Red Kites overhead, a Cormorant on the loch and Goldfinches and Redpoll on the feeding station.

 Good news today: thanks to the hard work of our local volunteer team and the Dundee Conservation squad led by Duncan Budge, our woodland walking path has now reopened!  A huge amount of storm damaged trees have been cleared and large habitat piles of wood created for future wildlife use. The path is the perfect place is you want a short stroll to help you digest your festive dinner!

Over the Christmas period, the walk and observation hide will be open for you to use if you would like to visit, but the visitor centre and toilets will be closed. Please take extra care using the paths and carpark in the cold weather and ice.

 Your Ranger and some faithful volunteers will be at Loch of the Lowes every day over the festive period to feed the birds and squirrels, so they don’t miss out. Remember to keep up your own bird feeding and watering and remember, turkey bones make a great bird treat!

Log onto the webcam around 9.30 am on Christmas Day to see the Ranger and friends send you all some festive cheer!

 

Preface

The midwinter Solstice is tonight and it will be the longest night of the year, after which the sun will start to gradually return – not so very long until …

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