Wildlife Diary Sunday 21st July

by Lindsey

A busy day here at the Loch. It kicked off with finding animal poo in front of the lower hide door and obviously we had to examine it! It was clearly a small mammal which gave us the options of hedgehog, stoat or pine martin. It gave off a really strong smell making it unlikely to be hedgehog so it was down to stoat or pine marten. Next step open up the poo and see what’s inside. The first one was vegetation and wild cherry stones. No help there as it could still be either, the second one was much more revealing as we found fish scales in it. This meant it was likely to be a pine marten, which is great news that they’re around even if we don’t get to see them very often.

The male otter was briefly spotted this morning, most of us missed it as we were watching a herd of fallow deer swim across the inlet. It just goes to show you have to keep a lookout everywhere.

Both adult Ospreys have given us some great flying displays today. The male had several fishing attempts in the loch where we could see him before finally catching a large Brown Trout. The fish fought back though and at one point the male was sitting on top of the water, like a large duck, and was wrestling to get it under control.

The female has also been doing lots of flying today and appeared to go in for a dip, we know she likes to go for a wash and brush up. She too went into the water and then sat on top, like a duck, before taking off again. She then headed to her favourite perch on the dead tree near the nest to dry off.

Blue YZ has been doing lots of wing flapping and jumping to strengthen her wing muscles and get her ready for fledging which should happening in the next week or so.

As the hot, dry weather continues please take care when you’re out an about. Tentsmuir National Nature Reserve (NNR) near Dundee recently had a large forest fire that took many fire crews and the reserve team several days to put out. It is thought the fire was started by a group of people possibly having a barbecue which quickly got out of control. Large areas of the reserve are affected not to mention the impact on the wildlife. There was a similar incident near Loch of the Lowes last year when a camp fire got out of control and started spreading rapidly towards people’s houses, fortunately it changed direction and was eventually put out but again with huge amounts of time from the fire crews and local estate staff and impact on the local environment. The advice from the fire service is to extinguish cigarettes properly and never to throw them on the ground or out of car windows. Avoid making open fires in the countryside and never leave bottles in woodland, as sunlight passing through glass can start fires. If you can help by following this advice, it could make a big difference and avoid potentially devastating fires.

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by Lindsey A busy day here at the Loch. It kicked off with finding animal poo in front of the lower hide door and obviously we had to examine it! …

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