Thursday, 9 November 2017


Brownie and one of the wedders enjoying the sun.

Searching for crumbs.

Brownie is just not interested in saying hello when he knows there is not any food for him.

For the most part the weather over the last few weeks has been pretty dire.  Every now and then though you get a wonderful day.  This was one of them.  It was so very very quiet.  I could hear the conversation the fishermen were having on their boat below the house.

Mid morning and the sun was burnishing Calgary with golden colours.

The Rosa rugosa has nearly lost all its leaves but it is still a very important Sparrow habitat.

Yes, not every day is blue sky.   And now that the clocks are well and truly back, it is a shock how early it gets dark in the evening.

On Sunday Farmer was helping with some sheep on another farm.  Daughter was doing an English essay and I had some errands to run on the Ross of Mull.  I could not have picked a better day.

As you know I am not a Birder and I didn't even take binoculars with me.  I had a lovely sighting of a female Hen harrier hunting very close to the road at one point and I saw dozens of Buzzards hunting and sitting on posts!

This boat lies across the road from the Pennyghael Stores.  The posts in the background indicate the route across the top of the loch at low tide.  I would not recommend it now, as I have no idea if there are in the same place as they were before, and besides there is a perfectly good road.

I have been across it twice. Once on my 'honeymoon' when  Farmer drove across it as a rash newly-wed in a 4x4 - and promptly washed the car to get the salt off it the next day!  The other time was a long time before that.  My father drove across it at low tide in his pride and joy, an old Citreon DS. As children we were both really excited and a little nervous at the same time - sharing my mothers anxiety perhaps!

The view up to Burg with Ulva beyond.

And peaceful bliss at Uisken.  No one else there. Picnic in the sun. Coffee in an old tin cup walking the strand line.

This is Castaways.  Did you know they have a 24 hour book shed round the back?  You can literally buy a book at any time of day or night!

The highlight of my day, sightings wise, were these two Otter pups.  I did report them to the Mull Otter Group though as I was concerned they were out on the road and there seemed to be no sign of the mother.

Back home and another day.  Damp and dark.  Such is November on Mull.  You need to enjoy the sunshine while you can. 

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Looking back on October

Where did it go? It is the first of November and I am wondering what happened to October.

Obviously one of the main excitements was the trip to Cockermouth and bringing home the additions to the Herdwick flock.   The following week we bought another 5 tups, but this time without leaving the island!

We went first to Glengorm and bought 2 Glengorm and 2 Mingary tups from there - good strong Blackface tups to go with our hill sheep.  Then we bought a Suffolk tup from another farmer on the island. This one we had seen at the Salen Show as Daughter's Herdwicks were in the same class, so we knew he was handsome but had forgotten how big he was.  He will go with the Cheviot and Zwartble ewes, and hopefully his lambs will be popular in the market next year!   The Suffolk tup has been called Peter as he has big ears.  The Herdwick is called Lachlan, I'm not sure why other than it being a very nice name.  The Blackface tups don't get names as they are not as tame.

Our fine Silver laced Wyandotte cockerel and some of his hens in the wild flower beds by the house.  Plenty of bugs and seeds to forage for.

Some late flowering daisies in a moment of sunshine.

As soon as the sun comes out the bees appear.

But moments later thick cloud and rain.

Followed by sun.  It does mean there are lots of rainbows!

And some gentle sunsets.  The sun is no longer setting over Coll, it has disappeared behind the Point and setting towards Tiree.  By mid winter it will be closer to the Treshnish Isles.  It marks the seasons in another way.

Storm Ophelia brought us some extraordinary skies, but luckily for us, it was not that windy here.

Farmer is busy getting the water tanks in to place on the hill above the cattle shed, so we are moving slowly towards connecting up to the borehole.  The cable and water pipe are laid.  Step by step.  It has been frustrating not getting it all done quickly, but it was probably a far bigger job than we realised.

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