Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Burnet Cocoons

The grassy area at the top of the croft behind our house, running along the common grazings fence, is one of the best places to find six-spot burnet moths. Their flying months are July and August, but we've only seen one this year, and it was the one on Bheinn Bhuidhe above Portuairk - blog post here.

However, until now we'd never found what might be a burnet cocoon. Now we think we have, but....

....all was not well with some of the cocoons we found. The second one seemed to have collapsed, there being no sign of the hole out of which the moth emerges, while....

....I'm not at all sure what happened to this one.

A rather different cocoon was spotted by Mrs Diary recently at Sanna. While it's easy to find photos of the six-spot cocoon on Google, I couldn't find this one, and wonder whether it may be the cocoon of the rarer transparent burnet which is supposed to be found at Sanna.

National Whale & Dolphin Watch

Tuesday, 25 July 2017


The weather has given us two days of blue skies and light northerly breezes, so the ladies of the household have been swimming. Rachael took to the water off Ormsaigbeg yesterday evening with a juive - a cross between a jump and a dive.

This morning they enjoyed the rather warmer waters at Sanna. This is our favourite of the various sandy bays at Sanna, on the far side of the Sanna Burn, but....

....we found the beach already occupied by a single compass jellyfish. While the ladies agonised over whether it was safe to swim - the compass does give a rather nasty sting - some of us....

....relaxed on a rock in the sunshine and watched the ships go by. This is the Eda Fransen, L208, a 1938 lobster boat built in Denmark.

In the end they decided to swim, and the jellyfish stayed away.

Annual Show & Sports Day 2017

From Derryck Morton:

The booking request for the usual sunny weather obviously did not get through for last Friday’s West Ardnamurchan Annual Show and Sports Day but that did not over-cast the spirits or standards. Stock judging began proceedings under the eye of Rhoda Munro....

....and Angus-John Cameron took Best in Show.

Encouraged to stand foot-perfect and perky, the methods of winner’s owners were an amusement to the crowd while.... of the sponsors, Johnny Watson, was rightly impressed with Alan Curtis’ stockmanship and awards.

The high standards continuing in one of the marquees with the display of craftwork, garden produce and food.

Again this year, there was the traditional Scottish regalement of live piping by Alastair Peterson and dance by Connie MacLennan.

As the sky opened to let through a little sunlight, the heavy sports began and races took place in front of the refreshment marquees, bouncy castle and slide.

A lot of fun was had powering the smoothie maker made by Paul, Richard and Chris.

Events concluded with the tug of war. The last time the visitors won was in 1969 and the status quo remains.

Proceedings concluded with the prize giving, officiated by Richard O’Connor and Joyce Hillard, who presided over a groaning table of silverware.
Many thanks to Derryck for pictures and story.
Derryck has been visiting Ardnamurchan for many years.

Monday, 24 July 2017


5.07am - dawn across Kilchoan Bay with a light northerly moving mist across the summits of Beinn nan Losgann and Ben Hiant.

5.26am - the sun's first rays touch the summit of Ben Hiant. The trig point is clearly visible.

5.42am - sunrise on the shoulder of Glas Bheinn.

11.26am - a perfect morning.  Picture looks across the marshes at the back of Kilchoan Bay to Ormsaigbeg and Maol Bhuidhe