Thursday, 21 December 2017

Glenshee - Ptarmigan and Snow Buntings

My yearly visit to Glenshee. On arrival at the overflow car park, just at the top of the long climb up to Glenshee Ski Area I parked near to the radio mast and immediately heard two Ravens and watched them fly over. Out of the corner of my eye I saw movement near the mast and could see a group of eight Snow Buntings sitting on the top, a very good start!
At that point I should have set up camp in the car park and tried to get Snow Bunting photos but I'd also come looking for Ptarmigan and soon saw one near the top of Cairnwell along with many Mountain Hares. How difficult would it be I thought to walk up the hill to the summit to get a photo of Ptarmigan, I'd get a Hare on the way. How wrong I was, as I didn't get any useful photos till I'd reached the top of the hill and overall climbed and descended 260 metres and walked 2 km. Yes, I was cursing carrying the large heavy lens and being cautious about falling and rolling down the snow patches with it!

Ptarmigan male, always on the snow patches to keep cool. It was 7 degrees when I returned to the car park, positively tropical

Ptarmigan female

male again

Snow Bunting, I threw down some seed to get them to come off their mast just before the sun dipped behind the hill. Maybe try for some on the beach soon, currently a few at Tenstmuir and Out Head

Mountain Hare

darker variant

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