Trip reports

Loch Garten & Abernethy

View of mountains through trees, RSPB Loch Garten nature reserve

Thursday, 12 April 2012

An earlier start next time perhaps. Siskins, coal tits and chaffinch were on the feeders and a jay flew past. The female osprey was on the nest and the male perched in a nearby tree.
We left at 8am to go for breakfast. Some group members were lucky enough to see a male black grouse. Very welcome coffee and excellent bacon sandwiches were purchased at the cafe in Glen More where we were entertained by a red squirrel on the feeder.
As the weather was good we decided to drive up to the Cairngorm Ski carpark. The mountain was covered with a light dusting of snow. By the car park were 5 beautiful snow buntings nearly in full breeding plumage, a male wheatear and a female ring ouzel.
A stop at Loch Morlich produced a pair of red throated divers, goosander and goldeneye.
From there we drove to Kincraig where we had lovely sightings of redpoll, bullfinch, a small flock of sand martins and a swallow.
Lunch was taken in the new hide at Insh Marshes. There were a few wigeon, mallard and herons on the ponds, plus 7 whooper swans, displaying lapwings and a distant otter. By now the showers were prolonged and it was decided to end the trip. 49 species were seen and apart from the missing capercaillie it was a excellent day.