There is an abundance of summer wildlife cavorting at Loch of the Lowes at the moment. A chaffinch even joined the fun inside the visitor centre this afternoon, adding a ‘close-up and personal’ aspect to the Lowes experience!
Up to three red squirrels at a time are bouncing around outside the viewing window and chasing each other high up into the canopy. Yellow hammers are bringing their fledglings in to feed and one adult yellowhammer is showing off his skills at perching to peck from the mixed seed feeder. This is a rare sight because yellow hammers are usually ground feeders. Young siskins, great spotted woodpeckers, coal tits, great tits and blue tits are all discovering the delights of our daily-filled feeding station.
In the winter, we found our feeders were being emptied during the night by deer and it is happening again! Much as we love to see the deer (roe and fallow) we would prefer them to leave the seed to the birds. There is plenty for deer to eat at this time of the year, both on the reserve and in the surrounding countryside, rather than expensive bird seed!
Today, there have been more intruding ospreys and our adult birds have been busy chasing them away. The three chicks continue to grow in leaps and bounds and may be taking their first flights from the middle of next week onwards. While there are many places to fish (other local lochs/rivers) within an easy flight from the nest, the male osprey often fishes right in front of the hides. He made 7 fishing attempts in one day last week, four of which were successful and all viewed by happy visitors.
There is a great deal to attend to on our Perthshire reserves at the moment and Charlotte and her team have just returned from a very hot, tiring but very satisfying day of bracken bashing at Balnaguard.
We are celebrating Dragonflies, Damselflies and Butterflies next week-end (11th & 12th July, 11am-4pm both days) and hope you will come along and see us.
Visitor Centre Assistant