Happily Ever After

Life in The Rural Retreat with a beautiful wife, three cats, garden wildlife, a camera, a computer – and increasing amounts about running

Earlier posts can be found on Adventures of a Lone Bass Player, where this blog began life. Recent entries can be found here.


Simply Reds

by admin - 21:15 on 05 September 2012

Squirrel James has never kept the location of his favourite reds a secret from me, but inertia (and laziness) meant that I've made little effort to make use of the information – not impressive for a would-be wildlife snapper.

So it was good that Soo and Tony are up from The Broad Acres, on holiday and desperate to see a red squirrel at close quarters.

Today was the day when we visited squirrel central, somewhere on the Black Isle, and were rewarded with a sighting only ten minutes after putting out peanuts and settling down to wait. Our stealthy subject descended from a leafy treetop and for maybe fifteen minutes we watched him scamper, eat and pose before dropping to the ground to disappear in a rustle of heather.

Red Squirrel 4

My snaps are not the sharpest, and the light could have been better, but I managed enough pleasing results to inspire me to return in search of better ones – after all, daylight martens are no more for another year so red squirrels would be a fine substitute, even if I can't see them from That Bloody Window.

Red Squirrel 5

We returned to The Rural Retreat where Matchgirl was still fuming following the visit by Cats Protection's officious Alness branch home examiner. You can read Matchgirl's complete rant on her blog.

The Inverness SSPCA was much friendlier when we visited a couple of hours later. We left undecided (well, I did) but consensus was reached after a short discussion: tomorrow, Matchgirl will stake her claim to the black cat she fell in love with yesterday and ask to bring her into our household on Friday. She'll also ask for the grey kittens to be given to us when they're old enough to leave the cattery in two or three weeks.

Red Squirrel 3

This means that tomorrow will be a busy day for Matchgirl: new cat baskets, toys and litter must be bought. A better name for the black mog must also be chosen – Matchgirl's not impressed with the moniker imposed on her by the SSPCA. Suggestions are welcome.

All this excitement, it must be stressed, doesn't mean that memories of Tess are fading. There were a few Matchgirl tears today and there are certain to be more in the future. Tess won't be forgotten.

Comment from James at 08:45 on 06 September 2012.
Glad you caught up with the little red. They usually run off to hide food and can be away for up to 5 minutes before coming back, always worth waiting. They are quite territorial too and rarely visit in anything more that a pair, that will change soon as the autumnal gathering instinct kicks in.

Great news about the cat too. Looking forward to meeting her.
Comment from Cathy at 19:43 on 06 September 2012.
What great photos!
Comment from Russell at 22:26 on 06 September 2012.
Thanks Cathy. Nice to hear from you again!

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