Monday, 25 May 2015

Scotland 2015. Day 16 Loch Na Keal and Tobermory

I woke early this morning to glorious sunshine and so was out looking for the local otters at 5.30.  They continue to be elusive, however; I think this may be the story of the trip.  There was much other activity, though, with several noisy pairs of oystercatchers defending territory and I came across at least two birds sitting on eggs.  They must be well habituated to people as there are plenty of dog walkers about and the Oban ferry is frequently in and out.
After breakfast we set out for our first trip: up to Salen and then across to Loch Na Keal.  We began by combing the southern shore of the loch as far as Dhseig and the path up Bem More, which loomed above in the clouds.  Although we came across no otters, I was delighted to spot and secure distant images of a great northern diver in superb summer plumage.  Driving back along the loch shore we came across a group who had seen a pair of golden eagles circling above the hill.  Too far away for photography, but exciting nonetheless. From here we continued round to the north shore where we had been told of a sea eagle nest sight.  We were delighted to have reasonable views of both birds perched high in a stand of pine trees.  Things became even more exciting, though, when one took off and flew round in a circle before settling in a different tree and giving  brief opportunity for photography.  What a spot to enjoy lunch!
Next it was time to photograph the superb nearby bluebell wood before driving on to Tobermory for some retail therapy for the support team after a morning’s birding.  Unfortunately the weather deteriorated while we were there and the day finished with rain.

What a great first day on Mull.

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