A warm welcome back to these little birds, sand martins, the smallest of the Hirundinidae, the family which includes swallows and house martins. The sand martins, which have been away in Africa for the winter, are always the first to return.
A small group were flying over the pools at the back of the shoreline below the Ferry Stores on Tuesday, but we finally caught up with them at one of their local nesting sites, in a cutting beside the road to the south of Loch Mudle.
Another sign of the changing seasons is that bait fish are appearing in the Sound of Mull. The birds attracted to them are indistinct in this picture, but include black back and common gulls, guillemots and one or two gannets.