Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Fyrish Hill (13/01/14)...

Yesterday I woke to a clear and frosty morning and with the weather forecast looking good I decided to go out for a walk. I decided to take a walk up to the top of Fyrish Hill near to Evanton because if forecast was right there would be some very clear views once I got up there.

There was a heavy frost on the ground once I got to the car park and the single track road up to was pretty icey but it appeared that quite a few people had the same idea as me because the car park was almost full. I set off through the forest where the path was covered in snow and ice. I like the woodland at Fyrish Hill because it is probably the most diverse conifer woodland you'll find in the area with bits of it having a real 'boreal' feel to it.

In terms of birds I knew the forest would be pretty quiet for this time of year and I hardly saw or heard anything on the way up, actually the only bird I did see was a fleeting glimpse of a Robin. I progressed up out of the woodland and onto the moorland and the Fyrish monument. There was a good 3-4 inches of snow by the time I got to the top and the views were stunning as I'd hoped. I found a spot away from the monument and the path and sat down for a cup of tea and some photos.

Looking West
Looking South-West with Conon in the distance
Fyrish monument.
Look East towards Cromarty and the Sutors.

The way back down was more productive. A Red Grouse was flushed near the top and upon reaching the open Pine woodland a group of Bullfinch was spotted with the males looking fantastic in the sun. Further down the path I took the alternative way back to the carpark which took be through some nice Pine woodland. Some movement and noise to me left caught my eye and I was pleansantly surprised too not only two Goldcrest but also two Crested Tit. Further on down the road still and I saw mixed flocks of Bullfinch, Coal Tit, Goldcrest and more Cresties, as well as a Great Spotted Woodpecker.

Overall a lovely morning out and always a joy to see the Cresties. Grey Heron and Black-headed Gull spotted also on the drive home. Upon returning home I had some brilliant news. I have managed to get myself a job and I will be based near to Plockton over on the West coast so as you can imagine the bird and wildlife possibilities are pretty exciting and the content of this blog will shift again!

Year List Additions:
20. Red Grouse
21. Bullfinch
22. Goldcrest
23. Crested Tit
24. Great Spotted Woodpecker
25. Grey Heron
26. Black-headed Gull

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