As Unpredictable As It Gets
August is a particularly strange time for the wildlife of the Moray Firth; a time where every day is different and there’s almost seemingly no rhyme or reason as to why it ends up that way. Over the past few years we have known this much, and it makes it particularly difficult for us to go into each day, because even knowing what the weather might be doing and what the tide state looks like, you will never be able to tell what you will see. For those planning a visit in August, be aware that it’s pretty much pot-luck month! Over the past few days, we almost had a pattern of “all-or-nothing” going, which all changed again when we had two days of 4 and then 3 out of 4 sightings in a day. Yesterday was another no-show, with neither Kesslet nor Charlie actually spotted anywhere until the middle of the afternoon/early evening, when they rocked up to Chanonry to play with Zephyr’s little one and eat some of the salmon travelling through there. Then today, it changed again, with only Kesslet appearing in the river first thing in the morning! The behaviour of the dolphins is so mercurial at this time of year; even the most predictable animals, like Kesslet herself, can be very hard to track down at times. In speaking to WDC Marine Mammal Officer Charlie Phillips, he tends to say he’s normally ripping his hair out around now, because his adoption dolphins just seem to disappear – and some of those can be pretty hard to find even in peak season!
This weekend is going to see some fun and games over the other side of the Beauly Firth from the marina, with the RNLI hosting their open family day all day Saturday! Visitors with us will likely get to see some of the events they have going on while out on their trips; including helicopter and lifeboat displays, rides on the lifeboat itself, and a chance to learn about what the RNLI do and why they’re so important to an area like the Moray Firth and beyond! Those big enough and fit enough will also get the chance to sign up and volunteer themselves to train and become part of their local crew! The WDC will also be there, with Charlie and Chanonry Shore Officer Sam hosting a display table, talking about the wonderful wildlife locals are lucky enough to enjoy from their doorsteps (or on boat trips like ours!). We would highly recommend heading over there after your trip if you’re coming on over the weekend, as it looks like a great time!