When people think of animals in the woods, you probably think of the classic wildlife – red squirrels, deer and capercaillie, which live in some of the further flung parts of Anagach.
I’ve only seen the latter once – a female uncharacteristically close to the well-used paths near The Bog. I walked round the corner and saw this huge bird sitting at the side of the track. All I could think was “Not a pheasant.” Then it flew off into the trees. Luckily the dog was on its lead.
It was an unusual sighting – as I said, the bird is more likely to be spotted in the eastern parts of the woods, along the Speyside Way path to Cromdale. There’s lots of signs to remind you of its presence.
While Anagach is a great place to spot all those creatures, it has been other inhabitants that have caught my eye in the past.
As I mentioned in a previous post, I have spent a lot of time at The Dump and it is here that I have found a way to practise macro photography. The Dump is a home for hundreds of tiny creatures.
The brightly coloured butterflies lured me first. They were darting here and there, while I tried to subtly follow them and get a picture.
Then it was the bumblebees that flocked to the thistles. They often seem to get drunk on the pollen, barely able to fly off.
And there’s the wee crickets, bounding away from my step.
But then I found a six-spot burnet moth, it’s red and black wings standing out against the green, brown and purple heather. Last year I found three (two were mating) but this year, I found a massive stash of them. For several days, there were dozens feeding on the purple-pink heather. Most special was seeing them flying, with their red bodies flashing through the air.
I have spent many hour creeping around the heather, trying to capture these wee creatures on film and improve my macro photography. I think I’m getting a bit better. These are some of my older pictures.