Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Routine day but enjoyable! 10.6.2011.

A really nice day that begged to be made use of! Sadly things seemed to be rather quiet which allowed a relaxed approach and provided an opportunity to explore a few "corners" that otherwise get neglected. Certainly Loch Indaal held little, although an interesting aspect is the presence of a number of widely spread, small breeding groups of Arctic Terns, which might afford them a better chance of success. The "traditional" colony at the head of Loch Indaal has long suffered from the area being a popular dog walking stretch, leading to repeated disturbance, and being an area selected for camping. Ideally the area should have been roped off, and disturbance limited, but the distributed nature of those breeding this season might now have found its own solution.

Further on I was captivated by this "stand" of Cottongrass amidst a shallow area of marsh. The colour contrasts within the landscape were superb , but I also then noticed the extent to which the trees in the background showed the effects of the recent storm, an outcome several people have commented on.

One of the things which struck me, when looking across Inner Loch Indaal eastwards, is how shallow this part of the loch actually is. Obviously this provides the attraction for the hordes of waders and dabbling duck in the winter months. Whilst the deposition patterns appear to alter slightly from time to time, and provide different lenses of shallow water or more exposed banks of mud and sand, the area largely remains the same and provides a very convenient haven in which many species can be seen.

So, a very pleasant day , with not a great deal of exceptional interest (I always feel guilty at saying that when we're surrounded by so many iconic species we end up taking for granted in some respects!! we don't actually! ), but a reminder of what a beautiful place Islay can be.

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