Other wildlife

sikamalc

Administrator
Site Staff
#1
We all have special memories of other wildlife we have encountered whilst out stalking, but I just wondered what other people have seen.

I have two memorable moments amongst a fair number. The first was a Golden Eagle not far from Tomatin just south of Inverness. I was stalking Red Stags in the rut, and after gaining some height came into a large beat bog complex. Some of you may know what I mean "Runners", In this case they were very deep, and coming round the corner of one high up on the tops, I walked slap bang into a Golden Eagle on a rock about 20yds away. As it had its back to me I stopped in a instant, and at the sametime it swivelled its head round opened its huge wings and silently glided off the top.

This was about 15 years ago now, and of course no camera, and if I had I doubt if I would have had time to take a snap.

This year I had another magical moment on one of my leases in Scotland. Stalking early in the morning along the rivers edge with my Bavarian, just as the light was coming up, with a slight mist along the floor, I walked slap banh into a huge dog Otter. I dont know who was the more suprised my Bavarian or the Otter.

Brilliant!!! I just stood there speechless, with a big smile on my face. I did not take a deer that morning, but who cares, memories like this put a picture in your mind that lasts forever. :D
 

monynut

Well-Known Member
#2
One of fondest moments regarding other wildlife was a few years back when feeding the pheasants one morning l walked out of the bottom of the wood where there was a large drainage ditch which for some reason l always had a look in and to my surprise like you Malc l came face to face with an otter :D l was gob smacked :eek: a wonderful moment that will always be with me.
 

bobt

Well-Known Member
#3
I was feeding the partridge on our shoot, as I climbed a fence there was a large black cat next to the pen, about large labrador size.
 

Drew

Well-Known Member
#4
Funny, as soon as I saw the heading I though of otters. Plenty of them around here. Spotted this one from my front window and watched as he swam ashore and went fast asleep in the seaweed. I sneaked down to the beach and got to within about 20 feet of him and watched him for about 15mins before he woke up, shook and went back to fishing. He was totaly unconcerned. Wonderful! Pic is a bit out of focus as I hadn't got the hang of my new lens, sorry.



I see them regularly from the house as well as seals, dolphins, porpoises, sea eagles, goldens...all magical moments.
 

Beowulf

Well-Known Member
#6
During my time in the Royal Navy I saw many amazing creatures from Manatees to Gentoo penguins. The most memorable was the time we spotted a pod of Killer Whales attacking another group of whales. One of the Bridge Officers informed me that the other whales were infact 'Pygmy Sperm Whales' They were not far off the size of the Killer Whales but had that Moby Dick look you associate with their larger cousins.
The Pygmy Sperm Whales had formed a tight protective ring around their calfs with their bodies and were trying to keep the Killer Whales out. The Killer Whales took it in turns to ram the whale wall and get the Male Sperm Whales to break off and persue them. When the Sperm Whales were almost exhausted by this 'Sea Scrum' two of the Killer Whales smashed up through the bottom of the Sperm Whales defensive ring and in doing so flung the young calves out into the waiting jaws of the Killers massed all around them. Its an odd site seeing a half ton baby whale flying through the air!
Our Captain put the ship's bows into the fray and the sailors watching threw everything that came to hand down on to the Killer Whales. It was a bit late to help the Sperm Whale calves and really what business was it of ours anyway. Its nature. It was very exciting though, certainly made you want to stay out of the water!
 

Fester

Well-Known Member
#7
I was out stalking with a friend a few years ago on local land, Was wearing my new at the time deerhunter realtree jacket & trousers when what i think was a sparrow hawk or something along that line ( to be honest im not that clued up with birds of prey) Attempted to land on my head :eek: It was only because i moved at the last min that it turned away. My mate was in stitches. a great experience tho :D
The realtree obviously worked a treat :D
 

poddle

Well-Known Member
#10
Last year whilst calling foxes,a barn owl that was sat on a post 150 yards away and 100 ft above us swooped down.
It hovered no more 12 inches above my head for over a minute and was looking for something to pounce on. I was led in the grass waiting to take out a big dog fox that had been killing birds on the shoot.

My friend ( a gamekeeper)and I were laughing so much despite being on the edge of a head full of talons,, but it was unphased. It eventually flew up into a dead tree 30 yards away and watched us for 15 minutes or more

Unforgettable
 

paul k

Well-Known Member
#11
It wasn't stalking but one of my best wildlife encounters came when I was driving a big game fishing boat out of Jeddah in Saudi Arabia. It was the sailfish season and we had gone 20 miles out to the edge of the inshore reef complex to fish in the main Red Sea.

The sailfish used to lie just off the reefs and I had made a run down one reef without success but had seen a sailfish on the surface and turned the boat to make another run. As I came alongside the reef I looked round to make sure that the lines hadn't crossed during the turn and saw a huge fin come up in the wake of the boat. My first thought was Great White and "I don't want to catch that bl**dy thing!" Then common sense took over and I realised that it couldn't have been a Great White and I slowed the boat down to allow the fish to come alongside.

It was a Whale Shark of about 40 feet in length with a baby of about 10 feet and they stayed close alongside for quite a while. People were diving over the side with cameras to get close to them but I had a great view from the flying bridge. After about five minutes they just sank away into the depths - I shall never forget that.
 

JAYB

Administrator
Site Staff
#12
One of the noisiest sights I ever beheld was when I was sat up in a high seat about 4 or 5 years ago. The seat was on the side of a forestry road, and I could hear a screaming coming from the wood the other side of the road. The the maker of the noise appeared it was pine marten, it crossed the road, went under the high seat and disappeared into the wood behind me. The noise carried on but was getting quieter than stopped. A few minutes later it started again, away to my right. The noise was getting louder and louder then it reappeared back out onto the road, this time there were two of them. They walked down the road towards my left, right in front of the high seat, the one behind still screaming it's head off. The one in front had taken about all it could stand of this and broke off into the forest on the left, the "singer" carried on down the road and out of sight. The thing is, as I turned back to the front, there was a big dog fox out on the track, now if he was after Pine Marten for lunch or not I don't know. I do know that as soon as I tried to get my rifle into position for it, he was off like lightening.

I had never heard a Pine Marten sing before, or since come to that

John
 

stone

Well-Known Member
#13
one of the most memorable incidents while out stalking was in south africa
we were looking for reed buck when out from a bush stood a grey ghost, it was the biggest kudu bull i had ever seen the multiple turns of its horns led on to to white lanterns that stood out in the clear but darkening sky , along with the comments from the PH saying 'you can't afford that one man' 60+ was a estimated at the time
i always think back to that trip on the winterberg mountains for that had many first for me
and the other was my first trip on sika hinds at glen bar in argyll, as we taversed the steep slopes to a newly sown field of grass there sat this large bird on a fence post, as we got closer to this immature golden eagle, it took up and landed on a few post further and this he did untill the post changed direction and then away he soared
since then i carry my camera most places with me
 

poddle

Well-Known Member
#14
Just remembered another.
I was sniping at rabbits last year at dusk, when a large tawny owl flew overhead clasping a writhing snake in it's talons. It flew up into the branches of a tall oak tree.
I unloaded my rifle and turned up the scope mag. Over the next few minutes I was able to watch the owl eat the snake.

Never seen it before, and won't again
 

needsy

Well-Known Member
#15
I have often returned without firing a round, but never return without anything, I always bring home memories
I think one of the great things about this sport, we get out see & hear the most amazing animals & behaviours.
My memories include watching a pair of marsh harriers working the marsh early in the morning against the most amazing sky & sounds of the marsh as it came to life.
The magical barn owl ghosting across the misty meadows in the still evenings, a fascinating bird.
Having a blue tit rest on the end of your barrel.
The pheasant that decides to roost directly behind you when your up the high seat & as you slowly turn around to see exactly where it had landed, you both scare each other s***less.
A red admiral in DECEMBER ????
Unfortunately the antis don't seem to think that we can also appreciate these wondeful things.
 

sikamalc

Administrator
Site Staff
#16
How very true Needsy. You hit the nail right on the head. We all have come back without a result, but every time you go out you see something different, and generally learn something new as well.

Nice to read about so many experiances you guys have had whilst out.

Cheers everyone, hope to meet a few of you in May ?
 

wadashot

Account Suspended
#17
One of my fondest memories was when i was out shooting flighting woodies. I had the dead ones laid out behind the wall that i was using as cover. After a while i moved along the wall but left the pigeons laid where they were. I came back to them and noticed that one had been moved and nearly dragged into the wall. Realising what it probably was i laid down looking at the part of the wall where the pigeon was and after only a few minutes the culprit showed its self within 2 foot of my face. It was a stoat, and what a sight it was to be so close as it still tried its best to get the pigeon into the wall. Maybe not as exciting as others, but to me it was magic. :D

wadashot
 
#18
i have a few of when i was at sea but my best one on land would have to be this,
myself and two of my shooting buddies were doing a bit of rough shooting with two pointers, the two boys had two phesents shot between them till my chance came, the dog rose a phesent and i shot it in mid flight, now i didnt kill the bird outright so it soared around 60 yards downwind from us into a cattle grazing field stone dead, the stupid dog didnt see it so i went after it myself, i was around 30 yards away and out of nowhere a three legged fox came out, snatched my phesent and tore off around 90 miles an hour down into the glen, i could not believe this, my first ever phesent shot and i lost it to a three legged fox.... pain in the ass!
 

wadashot

Account Suspended
#19
Oh, i`ve just remembered another one.
I was stalking in the borders with my mate and having just got the rifle all modded up and loaded ready to go onto the ground my mate said, "there, a fox", this fox was running down the field away but to the right so i rested on the hedge top and shouted OI, as i did this it stopped, i flattened it with a chest shot, as it went down it dropped a cock pheasant and it subsequently flew off :eek: What a lucky thing, mind you, it probably got shot the weekend after on the shoot. :D

wadashot
 

sikamalc

Administrator
Site Staff
#20
Another one springs to mind that is funny, and Fallow Stalker will remember this as well.

We were on a big lease I had in the highlands, and had been Goose flighting that morning, and had a friend who had shot his first Goose. He decided to hang it in a tree outside the back door of the lodge, and although I told him to put it in the barn , as there were Polecats, Pine Martins and Wild Cats around, he insisted it would be ok for the night in the freezing cold hanging in a tree.

Sometime later Fallow Stalker and another friend of mine were driving back to the lodge down the glen, and about 500yds from the lodge in the car headlights saw a Fox walking down the middle of the single track tarmac lane with a Goose in its mouth. But the wing was obstructing the view for the fox, and it just managed to leap to one side and escape in to the blackness.

Yes you guessed it, it was my friends first Goose !!! he spent the next half hour looking for the Fox with a mag light and a Shotgun. Needless to say we were laughing so much we could not help :lol: :lol:
 

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