Days 10 & 11
A double day blog today to catch back up to date.
Day 10 - Tollie Kites
I know you were all dying to find out if we got the car fixed ;) Well we did, the guy at Fortrose garage was great.He replaced two coils and everything is good again except for the £82.50 taken from our holiday funds lol
The car was fixed while we were out with our friend Jan who arrived for a catch up and then decided we should pop over to Tollie to see the Red Kites as she had not been before and we had only been once,a few years ago.
We were met by RSPB employee Brad who spoke to us about the Kites and during a long conversation both before and after the feeding, also talked about the mass poisoning in 2014 which killed 16 Red Kites and 6 Buzzards.
RSPB volunteer John arrived to put out the food in 4 stages to try to prevent the local Gull gang from taking advantage.The Red Kites didn't give them a chance though lol
10 Kites were counted along with just a single Buzzard and the Gull gang.After leaving Tollie, Jan dropped us off in Fortrose to save us the walk to pick our car back up.I also saw species 62 of the trip with this Yellowhammer.
With everything sorted we could look forward to getting out for Day 11.
Day 11 - The Largest Shingle Beach in Scotland
After looking at the weather forecast and believing it 😒 we decided to head East along the Moray Firth coast instead of North into Sutherland.The traffic through Inverness was surprisingly sparse for 8.15am as we expected to get stuck on the Kessock Bridge for a while, so we made good time.The drive along the A96 was the same.Just outside of Culloden hundreds of Pink-footed Geese were feeding in a roadside field.
As we reached Spey Bay we turned off into Mosstodloch to drive down the side of the bay and were rewarded with our first Swallow of the Spring.We parked in Kingston on the East side and stepped out of the car into the wind and sea spray.
Looking East up the shingle beach.
Looking West up the shingle beach.
This is the largest shingle beach in Scotland.It was now a very blustery day with the white tips hitting the shore with some force and was littered with a large amount of driftwood.
Out in the water I noticed a large raft of ducks, Long-tailed Ducks.
Numerous Eiders then started to fly in from the East.
Along with 9 Sandwich Terns.
Along with these a distant Northern Gannet over the sea and a Ringed Plover on the beach took our tally to 66 species.
Spot the Ringed Plover.
A Grey Seal also graced us with its presence and a pair of Goldeneye landed in the sheltered bay behind the shingle.We visited the Scottish Dolphin Centre there, where lots of people were busy buying souvenirs of Dolphins and a talk was been held.
We left and head back West stopping at both Elgin(never been there before) and Inverness to browse the shops and managed to pick up some more bargains to be used on our carboot sales to help fundraise for wildlife 😊
Buzzards - 30
Red Kites - 17
Ospreys - 2
Hen Harrier - 1
Peregrine - 1
Tawny Owl - 1(heard only)
Come back tomorrow for Dolphins and Dippers.