Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Quick Turn Around

    Well that was a bit of a b***er, I'd just spent an hour typing out the blog when it all disappeared (and wasn't saved)! Hey ho, start again.

  After returning from our stay at Sumburgh lighthouse, I had a few hours to sort myself out before heading off the following day to Dunkeld in Perthshire with four pupils and two teachers for 5 nights away. Uyeasound school had been doing some archaeological projects involving Scotland's Rural Past and had been invited to attend the final conferance to give a presentation about their work. So, on Thursday 16th June, we set off for the Northlink ferry for the over night trip to Aberdeen. The sailing went well and arrived at just after 7am on a bright sunny morning..................

 Arriving in Aberdeen

 The journey down to Birnham/Dunkeld went without a hitch thanks to some great travel planning back at Uyeasound during the past few weeks. On arriving there however it was now raining. The following day was spent most of the time at the Birnham Arts Centre however, I did get to the pub to meet up with a good friend of mine for a beer or two...................

The Uyeasound free standing display

  The whole day went very well and the Uyeasound kids did themselves proud, with well over a hundred people at the conference, their DVD presentation received a long and loud applause.

  The following day was spent on the Blair Atholl estate doing what I would call a cross between orienteering and an archaeological walk. The route was just over 6 miles and at each check point were clues and a grid reference to the next one. Each check point had something of an archaeological interest etc and although I must admit to neither not knowing much about, or having and interest in archaeologically found it very interesting and enjoyable. Below are a few views of the day.....................

  The trip back home was as easy as the trip down (including an almost totally flat calm sea) and I arrived home late morning on 21st June. Only home for an hour, I then went out with Ian (my father in law) to see if the Black-throated Diver had returned to Norwick. (I'd got a text the day before to say it was there), sadly it hadn't returned.  We then headed off over towards Lamba Ness to see if the 'Blue' Malee (|Fulmar) was around. Not long after turning down the old road towards the head, I spotted a very pale lark fly up from the road in front of the car. It landed not far away, giving me a chance to both take a record shot and check the bird through the scope. It was as, I thought, a Short-toed Lark. Much plainer and also a more sandy brown than our own Skylark, with a distinctively different flight action or jizz. By carefully placing the beanbag on the hinge area of the open car door and then the camera on top, I could slowly drive towards the bird and, hopefully, get some better shots - which fortunately I did..........

Short-toed Lark

I've been using the 'trailcam' quite a bit, with varying amounts of success - I always get something, but not always what I'm after. Recently the subjects captured in various states of illumination have been Hedgehog, Hooded Crow, Starling, cat, rabbit - and several otter shots. Also lots of false triggers caused by the water rippling on the pool. I've now moved it for a couple of nights to try and capture what's using a hole along the beach. It doesn't look quite big enough for an otter but as there are no rabbit droppings near by, I've got an open mind about it. I'll post a couple more vids' next time.


No comments: