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  • Writer's pictureHarris Brooker

Summer is Nearly Here

Our Pine Martens are still coming in regularly to our Evening Mammal Hide in the Cairngorms near Aviemore. Their summer moult is nearly complete - at least it is for the male Pine Marten who is still enjoying his meal of sultanas, peanuts and peanut butter high up on its platform, safely beyond the reach of the Badgers

There is a male Pine Marten on a platform of moss and grass eating sultanas in a contorted position whilst looking straight ahead at the camera
Pine Marten (Photo Credit: Harris Brooker)

There is a Pine Marten sitting on an elevated platform with its head down feeding on sultanas and peanuts, with some tree branches in the background
Pine Marten (Photo Credit: Harris Brooker)

The Badgers are coming every night, feeding and squabbling as usual. No sign of cubs yet but hopefully it won’t be long now. We still make them work hard for their dinner, either by putting the peanut butter at a height on the trees or putting peanuts under a birch log and watching them use their strength to shift it. With our newly installed microphones we can hear them crunching away from within the hide!

There is a Badger feeding with its head bent to the left with one paw outstretched showing its five long claws. Its body is bent almost side on.
Badger Feeding (Photo Credit: Harris Brooker)

There is a group of five Badgers feeding on an open platform together, one on top of a Scot's Pine log with its back to the camera. Two others either side of it are on the ground also with their backs to the camera. Two others are facing toward the camera. One is side on the other is face on licking peanut butter off a set of tree branches with its purple nose flexing as it feeds
Badgers Feeding Together (Photo Credit: Harris Brooker)

There are also regular visits from Wood Mice and Bank Voles as they sneak furtively for whatever peanuts they can grab. Our guests have enjoyed daytime creatures too; Chaffinches, Blue Tits, Siskins, Great Spotted Woodpeckers, Woodpigeons and Goldcrest have also made appearances, early on while the daylight is at its best. Our new microphones pick up their songs and calls, including those distantly of Pheasants and roding Woodcocks. Locally there is now Twinflower in flower, a rare plant native to the Caledonian Pine Forest which has delighted visitors.

We have also had our first booking for this year for the Summer Badger Photography Hide. A separate hide that we run where visitors wanting to focus on Badger photography can capture images of Badgers under natural daylight conditions.

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