If we don’t see the Scottish speciality birds this trip it won’t be for want of trying, again this morning we were out pre breakfast! Not quite so early toady but none the less early. We were going to revisit the carpark at the Osprey centre at Loch Garten. You may think that a strange way to begin a day and indeed the month of June but there was logic. Some people have had luck in the far corner of the car park, luring the Crested tits in with peanuts and peanut butter although lately there hadn’t been much success but worth a try.
We did try but no luck, I think we may have to admit defeat with the tits and Scottish crossbills. This Great spotted woodpecker did take advantage of the tasty treats set out!
Across the road the Loch was looking so peaceful and very little disturbed the water this morning. The family of Golden eye were present again and I think I got a slightly better picture. There was also a group of female Golden eye hanging out together. First thing this morning was quite cloudy and a mist hung over the hills, it changed a lot later on!
We had a different plan for later this morning, we were going on a train ride, on The Starthspey railway’ Ian has always liked trains but thankfully is not what anyone would call an enthusiast. But an opportunity arose to take a steam train from Broomhill station, the station was used in Monarch of the Glen and then called Glenbogle!
Our destination was Aviemore and we would have about two and a half hours there. It was a pleasant journey although it would have been improved if we hadn’t been sat near the noisiest family in Scotland! None of them seemed to have the slightest interest in the train ride and they were all so loud not just the children but the dads too! Hey ho, takes all sorts I guess!
When we arrived we popped into the information place to see what there is to do in Aviemore and were told, nothing really! Basically it seems people go to Aviemore to go on somewhere else, but with just a couple of hours that wasn’t really an option.
We got a map showing a walk up a hill which sadly we didn’t have time to complete (he, he, he) but we walked up to a nature reserve and had lunch by Loch Puladdern. It was a lovely little spot and on the way to it we had two good bird treats. First I saw a Peregrine Falcon flying high over the trees, it was such a pleasure to watch that I honestly didn’t think to raise a camera to it! Next treat came much lower down from among some bushes when we heard the clear call of a Grasshopper warbler, excellent, an unexpected year tick which becomes bird number 225 for the year.
Whilst eating lunch a Heron flew in with two much smaller birds close behind him, the Heron soon flew off again but the others remained. They were Common sandpipers and one let me get close enough for some pictures.
The time soon went and after an enjoyable walk we headed back to the station for our return, much quieter, trip! This lovely view across to the Cairngorms is from the bridge at Aviemore station.
There was gorgeous scenery all the way but not always easy to capture from a moving train. This picture is of the community project Milton Loch that we visited (see blog ‘a slightly disappointing day’)
So back ‘home’ from a nice time out and with an unexpected bird to add! A brief walk after our meal and then we are settling in to plan what we might do tomorrow.