We had to drive for a longtime to get there. We stopped off halfway and stayed in a hotel for a rest. We had a picnic by the river by the motorway. We found some small grey feathers that turned blue in the sunlight, we think they are Kingfisher feathers. We also found this Mayfly
Mayfly that is resting after just emerging from the river
When we woke up we had a lush breakfast and then drove a lot more. We got stuck in some traffic jams and had to drive over some big mountains. On top of one of the mountains there was a Scottish man dressed in his kilt playing the bagpipes, they sounded real cool.
After going over the mountains we had to catch a ferry across a loch
The Corran Ferry crossing Loch Linnhe
Dad said we were nearly there but it took another hour to get to the long bumpy lane that lead to the house we were staying at. The house was called Clavan which means Buzzard in Scotish. The house was on a mountainside next to some oakwoods on the shore of loch Sunart (http://www.unique-cottages.co.uk/cottages/westcoast/argyll/clavan)
View of Clavan from the top of the hill, Loch Sunart in the background
It was fun opening the 3 gates to the cottage. When i first went into the house i thought it was really great. There was a stream and little waterfall by the house, there were fish in it but they were too quick to identify and too many midges to try and catch them.....
The stream next to the house
There were Swallows nesting under the eaves whizzing up and down in front of the window.....
Swallows under the eaves
There were a pair of woodpeckers flying around the garden......
Great Spotted Woodpecker
They were collecting peanuts from the feeder and flying about and hiding them in crack in trees and fenceposts, to eat later......
Great Spotted Woodpecker
Also on the feeders were Siskins, a bird which i have never seen before even though they are quite common.....
There were buzzards flying overhead.....
It was amazing. In the nighttime we watched the mountains turn red as the sunset
View from the lounge
Just as it was getting dark my brother shouted that there was a Polecat on the bird table. At first we didn't believe him but when we looked it was a fat Pine Marten. There was a family of Pine Martens who visited every night and ate food we put out for them (bread, peanuts and raw eggs). One night we put out 5 eggs. The pine marten sneaked up, put them in his mouth and run off with it each time in a different direction to hide them. The Swallows would go mad when the Pine Marten came because they thought they would rob the eggs from their nest, so we put the food away from the nest. We got some pictures on my trail cam and sometimes they visited before it got dark....
Cheeky Pine Marten
Taken with my Trail cam
Eating peanuts off the windowsill
In the morning there was a Cuckoo calling in the tree right outside the house
We went for a walk up the mountain and found a deer antler and pine marten skull
We also found some dragon flies and chasers in the bog
Out for a walk
Tipula maxima (Daddy long legs/Cranefly)
Cordulegaster boltonii - Golden Ringed Dragonfly
Libellula quadrimaculata - Four Spot Chaser
We went down to the loch and Dad went for a swim. I managed to catch an Eel, and ticked it off the list...
We found a good spot with what looked like otter spraint (poo) and left the trail cam out overnight. These are the pictures we found the next day and couldn't believe it....
Otter at Loch Sunart
In the night when my brother was going to bed he found a tick in his armpit. Dad had to pull it out with his swiss army knife tweezers. We all had to be checked and dad found one on my brothers neck and Nanny had 2 on her legs. Dad pulled them all out and had to have a whisky afterwards to calm his nerves. Ticks are not just in Scotland they are in Wales too, if you go out walking in the countryside you should read this http://www.tickbitepreventionweek.org/index.html Heres the tick from the armpit..........
As well as ticks there were midges which are little flies which bite you and suck your blood. Dad had lots of bites. We saw this funny rock by the side of the road...
A giant bloddsucking midge
We went to some lovely beaches and i found a Sandeel and some Elver (baby eels). Where we sat on the beach i spotted an oyestercatcher nest with 3 eggs in it....
Bucket of fish at Sana Bay
Elver, a baby Eel (top middle)
Yes this is Scotland
5 minutes from the house was a really good wildlife hide http://www.forestry.gov.uk/Website/ourwoods.nsf/LUwebdocsBykey/ScotlandHighlandSunartOakwoodArderyArdAirighArdAirighcarparkGarbhEileanWildlifeHide
We saw lots from the hide including my first red breasted merganser, grey seal, common seal, sandpiper, oystercatcher, herons, jellyfish, and terns
Common Sandpiper caught on my Trail Cam
Old Nog the Grey Heron
Red Breasted Merganser
Island of Terns in the middle of Loch Sunart
Loch Sunart (Trail cam picture)
In the hide at Loch Sunart
When we were out walking we saw lots of plants and flowers and some really pretty butterflies
We think this is a Fritillary. Its on a Thistle which is a Scottish symbol
We think this is a Common Blue
Beetle on Mull
Dactylorhiza fuchsii - Common Spotted Orchid
Pied Wagtail with beak full of flies
Me next to a Rowan tree
On our last day we caught the ferry to Mull and went on a wildlife tour with Richard (http://www.mullwildlife.co.uk/information.html). This was an amazing day where we saw our first Otter, Golden Eagle and White Tailed Sea Eagle with chick. The white tailed eagles nest is the size of a double bed. Its the biggest bird in the UK. I will never forget it. Those jam scones were pretty nice too. This is my list of things i saw when i was with Richard for the day
Blackbird, Buzzard, Chaffinch, Hooded Crow, Cormorant, Curlew, Collared Dove, Golden Eagle (3), Whitetail Eagle (4 +chick), Eider duck, Canada Goose and Goslings, Greylag Goose, Great Black Backed Gull, Common Gull, Herring Gull, Hen Harrier, Grey Heron, Kestrel, Linnet, Red breasted Merganser, Shorteared Owl, Oystercatcher (+chick), Meadow Pippit and Rock Pippit, Robin, Sandpiper, Shag, Shelduck, House sparrow, Starling, Swallow, Pied Wagtail, Willow Warbler, Wheatear, Winchat, Otter, Common Seal, Red Deer and Fallow Deer.
White Tailed Eagle
View from on top
Otter hunting on Mull
View near Kentra Sands
Back at the house we saw a fox glowing red in the sunset and then the moon came out
This fox was glowing red in the evening sun
View from the lounge at night
On the way home we got stuck in a traffic jam at Loch Lomond, then a man ran past us with the Olympic torch. I was glad to get home to my own bed but i already miss Scotland.
Olympic Torch on the shore of Loch Lomond
So ticked off the list are