This is by far the most exciting and unique Otter project I have ever been part of. By building an artificial holt kitted out with a live video stream we have been extremely fortunate to enjoy a truly privileged insight into a wild otter family in Shetland http://www.shetlandnature.net/2013/01/25/shetlands-otters-underground-an-unseen-world/
Attached is a photo of the mother and cubs a few months ago from a more 'convenional' perspective.
Saturday, 26 January 2013
Thursday, 24 January 2013
Its been a month or two since my last posting (I regularly update our facebook page http://www.facebook.com/shetlandnature?ref=hl ). This is not to say its been quiet for otter antics, in fact the very opposite. This is a very busy time of year for me in spite of the weather and season as it is the time when I do most of my monitoring of the sites I use throughout Shetland. Our core 'otter guiding season begins (which you can read about at http://www.shetlandnature.net/otters/), usually in late February and slows down into September. During these often wild winter months I monitor many sites throughout the islands as part of my own projects and also monitoring. It is also imperative I put in the time at all the sites I know so I am up to speed with which sites are active, where families are and to get an idea of how many animals are in each range. this is imperative as I need to be able to know first hand throughout the year where our best chances are.
It is also crucial that I dont only know where the best sites are but even more so to know when each site is usable and under which conditions. Knowing many sites allows me to be able to use only the sites that the wind direction allows on any given day. This intimate knowledge helps by offering a range of habitats and coastlines which can make a very big difference to photographers especially. Many sites can be great for activity but not conducive to photography. Relying on one honey-pot site introduces all kinds of limitations not to mention puts pressure on the otters them selves.