Our Wild    Life

Nature photography by John Langley ARPS & Tracy Langley ARPS

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Cairngorms - July 2013

We spent a week in the Newtonmore area in search of the elusive mountain ringlet butterfly. It’s not an easy butterfly to find as it mainly lives above 400metres. Thanks to a very informative talk and field trip organised by Butterfly Conservation (Dr Tom Prescott and Andrew Masterman), we learnt about the life cycle and habits of this tough little butterfly and how to identify suitable habitat and foodplants. With a few pointers on mountainous locations to scout, we set about several hikes but were not too hopeful as the weather was windy and cool. However, on a couple of days we found a few mountain ringlets and also another new butterfly for us - the large heath

Large heath

Mountain ringlet

As a rest from mountain climbing we took a few woodland walks in search of the beautiful twinflower

After a week of walking, we were ready for some more intensive photography. The final few days of our Scottish trip were spent in the company of a small group of masochistic photographers who rose every morning at 2.45am only to be driven to a small wooden hide in which we sat for many hours. Were we mad ? Well, possibly, but it was good fun.

We joined one of Northshot’s “Fish Eaters of the North” trip. Ospreys were the main course, with a side-dish of dolphins. Our thanks to Pete Cairns for dragging us out of bed at such an unruly hour and providing great photo opportunities, not to mention superb hospitality. Also thanks to the rest of the small group who were great company - hope you’ve caught up on all the lost sleep by now !