Into Autumn

Almost at the end of September already,

We have had some gorgeous weather with frost at the weekend. Clear nights and the milky way right above the house. The Aurora alerts are coming in with a red alert last night and it was cloudy!
We are into the deer rutting season and boy has it been good so far. There has been a lot of activity in the field behind us and a lot of roaring close to our house. Our self-Caterers are thrilled thank goodness. Take a look at the link (stag)to the video below, 

Stag

       

I am working with Mike helping with his gardening jobs, its a great way to keep fit. The grass cutting is coming to an end now so I will be heading to my craft shed to paint a few pictures and build up a stock of hand painted silk scarves ready to sell on line. I had hoped to start holding silk painting classes but the new covid restrictions have delayed that.

Our nightly treat of the two hedgehogs coming for food is just lovely. They can eat a huge amount and they look really fat and healthy, they are ready for their hibenation any day now.

 Seems strange not taking the tours but we are still getting out and about and its lovely to see our returning self catering guests. We have quite a few bookings over winter, especialy Dungallen cottage with the woodburner, Cosy. 

We have managed to get out on our boat a few times while we have had good weather and each time have seen some special wildlife. Dolphins and porpoise have been entertaining us and there are still some gannets diving for food. A very friendly Great Skua followed hoping for a fish or two. The air was so clear we could see the Cuillins on the Isle of Sky 

A lovely walk with friends to Loch Ba was stunning, the mirror calm water gave us perfect reflections. As the morning warmed up the Golden eagles flew along the ridges and the Jays were searching for nuts in the Hazel bushes. Grey wagtails flitted across our path as we walked.

     

 

 

Yesterday we were out with close friends and we had a brilliant day. especially good for both Golden and White tailed eagles. The otters are a little hard to find unless its early morning. We have had a lot of visitors to Mull this summer and I guess the otters are more nocturnal at the moment.

 

As we went through the mountains the sound of roaring stags was all around. The golden eagle in Glen More was just gorgeous. It was perched on a ledge and preening and enjoying the sun on it. Another two flew over the top and a White tailed Eagles as well.

We also enjoyed good views of a Hen Harrier carrying prey, Peregrine falcon , kestrel , sparrowhawk and buzzard. A good day for raptors.

No wheatear now and the thrushes are arriving for winter. Red throated and Great Northern divers are also been seen on the Lochs.

My treat, apart from the 6 Golden eagles was the group of about 20 Golden plover flying in as we were at the Golf course area at Craignure. This is always a busy place with lots of Common seals, Red breasted merganser, Ringed plover, Curlew, Greenshank and a variety of Gulls. We didn’t see the White tailed eagles there today but we made up for it as we drove around.

Our final stop of the day was at the knock end of Loch Na Keal. We just paused to scan and a White tailed Eagle landed on the shore below us, another flew over and was joined by 2 more. this gave us a total of 8 during the day. 

Fallow deer on the way home, A grand day out.

  

As we head into October the Island is getting quieter for visitors, Mike and I will be heading out wildlife watching as the winter visitors come in from the north. We will be expecting to see a few Whooper swans and geese such as Barnicle and possible brent. Different ducks with the teal and Widgeon and Slavonian grebe. We are seeing little grebe already and flocks of mixed tits, goldcrest and tree creepers. The thrushes such as Mistle, fieldfare and redwing will be heading our way. Perhaps a White winged gull will make an appearence this winter. 

Its one of my favorite months as we get moody skies, rainbows and hopefully starry skies. A great time to do some of the longer walks as work will slow down. Warm cosy firelit nights