In the Cairngorms National Park
Our previous ‘Raptors of the Highlands’ trip had us in awe of the birds of prey found in the Cairngorms National Park. Two full days in the National Park were spent down in Findhorn Valley, with close views of Peregrine Falcon and Red Kite, plus exploring in and around the Caledonian Pine Forest of Abernethy, with views of White-tailed Eagle, Goshawk and Osprey near the Steading.
Travelling to the Isles
We travelled to the Isles by ferry, with good views of Slavonian Grebe and two Golden Eagles soaring over the hills in the distance. Great views of Bar-tailed Godwit, Ringed Plover and Dunlin were also had. During breakfast at our hotel overlooking stunning scenery, we were joined by a Dog Otter wading through the seaweed below us, before we headed out for a boat trip. Although damp, we had great views of adult and juvenile White-tailed Eagles and our drive back to the hotel treated us to close views of a pair of Golden Eagles soaring over a field.
Continued views of White-tailed and Golden Eagles, Buzzards, Kestrel and a fast Hen Harrier on our last day, were trumped by a diversion on the road giving us our ‘magic moment’ of the trip, a close fly-over from a Golden Eagle. It was even too close for the binoculars! A total of 160 raptors during the week made it a great holiday.
In previous years we have combined the Cairngorms National Park with the Isle of Skye. This year, we will be travelling to the Isle of Mull, which is famed for its raptors. Mull, also known as Eagle Island, has fabulous mountain walks, coastal views and golden beaches, as well as charming towns, like Tobermory with its coloured houses. In Mull it is not unusual to see Golden Eagle and White-tailed Eagle in the air together.