Thursday, 30 May 2013

Cairngorm - Ptarmigan Country!

A gentle walk up Cairngorm today with one particular target species - Ptarmigan. Despite a good forecast for the day, it was a damp cool walk from the car park - most of it in drizzle!

It didn't look good at the ski station either, with cloud closing in!

I sheltered for about 30 mins and then, unbelievably, the cloud cleared :-)  I was off to the summit.....

I'd seen and heard Ptarmigan on the walk up - below as well as above the ski station. Always distant and sometimes in flight!

Returning from the summit by a different path, it wasn't long before I was in Ptarmigan land!! A male was flying around trying to fend off another one - as I sat eating my lunch, he opted to join me!

Amazing stuff as he simply ran around the general area nearby!

He wasn't alone either as a female strode into view. Completely untroubled by my presence!

Provided I sat still, the two were just content to  carry on feeding.....

The highlight was the arrival of another male and an ensuing chase by the 'local' male took him, calling over a nearby snow patch...... Moments don't come better than this!

I moved on with job done. Here's some of the final farewells.....

The female becoming even more curious!

Plus the male showing off nicely......

Before taking to a favourite perch :-)