Well, winter really is here, with the woods snow dusted and the loch fast freezing over. Our feeding station is frantically busy with woodland birds and the red squirrels are still visiting regularly to stock up on yet more nuts. The shallow snow cover has proved ideal for snow tracking and we have been able to see just how close the deer come at night to the staff quarters and hides!
The loch really has the winter feel, with small numbers of usual winter residents such as Whooper swans, Greylag geese and winter ducks such as Pochard around. A more unusual sighting this week has been a female Long Tailed Duck who is more often found in coastal areas- perhaps she will spend the winter with us as one did a few years ago.
This week we have welcomed two new residential volunteers, Emma and Kirstin, who will be with us over the winter helping with lots of behind the scenes work in preparation for next year.
Your ranger has been spending a lot of time shovelling snow and gritting paths, to make sure you can get safely to the Visitor Centre to enjoy some warm wildlife watching and Christmas shopping this weekend- remember we are open Friday, Saturday and Sunday right through the festive season.
Don’t forget we also have some festive storytelling coming up with local storyteller Lindsey Gibb: Saturday the 15th of December, Sundays the 23rd and 30th December and Sunday the 6th January, 2-3pm , free with usual entry.