Tuesday, 17 February 2015


A wild misty day in the hills a few days ago above Peebles. Striding down through the heather to check a wee ravine for any raven signs, I spotted this male kestrel hiding from the drizzle in the lee of a rowan. There is definitely something magical about watching a raptor at such close quarters without it knowing you are there. The noise of the rushing burn below had obviously masked my approach and I watched it shuffle about, preen, and eventually fly down out of sight.

Following a side burn up high into the hills I flushed some small birds and saw the flash of white rumps ahead of me. Wondering what it could be, I was very surprised to discover they were a party of 8 bullfinch - wonder what they were doing up here among the patches of snow! There was also a white mountain hare and a single male black grouse for company up there. On the way back to the car I was intrigued by this sycamore with its super flaky bark. Oh, and there was a new pair of ravens there too!