Allan Bantick OBE welcomes you to the Cairngorm Wildlife Diary for 2022

Most of the badger sightings mentioned here were made at the Strathspey Badger Hide. If you would like to go, click here for booking details.

Locations of sensitive nests and dens are kept deliberately vague for obvious reasons. If you have a bona fide reason for more detail please let me know. 

The diary will usually be updated daily.   For comments on wider issues and for images and videos, please follow  @AllanBoat  on Twitter or Allan Bantick on Facebook or go to my YouTube channel.


Sat 21st Jan.  Heather and I went to the badger hide and set up three trail cameras: one to watch the new tawny owl box, one to watch the old tawny owl box to determine if the owl in it was dead or sleeping and one to watch the big main badger sett and acquire some new snowy footage of badgers if the current forecast for light snow turns out to be correct. 

Sun 2nd Jan.  Kate from BogWig delivered two broken peanut feeders from Milton |Loch for repair and collected some peanuts.

Mon 3rd Jan.   It snowed quite heavily.

Tues 4th Jan.  Mostly just slept.

Weds 5th Jan.  Saw fox footprints in the snow along Donald's track.   Repaired the two broken feeders.

Thurs 6th Jan.  Took the repaired feeders and reinstalled them, complete with peanuts, at Milton Loch.  Whilst there I noticed the feeder cage was looking tatty with broken strands of netting so the plan was to go back next day to fix it.

Sat 8th Jan.  Disturbed a woodcock beside the main track near Box 16.   Thought I had found a badger footprint in snow along the caper track but there was only one so perhaps not.

Sun 9th Jan.   Checked the three trail cams at the badger hide.  The new tawny owl box had seen no action at all. There was one video at the old tawny box of a tawny perched on top of the box, which told us nothing useful about whether or not the owl I found in the box a few weeks ago was alive or dead.  The camera at the big badger sett revealed that badgers had only emerged from their snowy lairs during four of the first eight nights of the year.  The most badgers seen simultaneously was four in one video; Bling was not seen in any of the footage.

Thurs 13th Jan.   It was less cold today so I ventured out and repaired the feeder cage at Milton Loch.  Lots of birds on the loch and a few tourists enjoying the peace and quiet.

Sat 15th Jan.  Received a hospital letter inviting me to phone them to fix a date for my CT scan.

Mon 17th Jan.   Checked the three cameras at the badger hide.  No activity at all at either of the two owl boxes but quite a lot of action at the big badger sett with up to five badgers plus a few mice and roe deer.  Bling with its snare was not seen.  Phoned the hospital and agreed Mon 24th Jan for my CT scan.  Fingers crossed.

Tues 18th Jan.  Managed 9 holes of golf.

Weds 19th Jan.  Topped up the woodland bird feeders.  Worked on a golf club video portraying a mixture of people playing golf and local wildlife.





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