Golden Autumn Days – Muir of Dinnet NNR

What a glorious week to come back from a fortnight’s holiday! The trees haven’t half  turned in my absence and are probably at their best this week. But it won’t be long until they lose their leaves, so we’d strongly advise getting out there NOW- or you’ll miss the best autumn colours!

Birch leaves against blue sky

Birch leaves in autumn sun

Autumn birch

Even on a dull day, the trees just glow.

The trees glow even on a dull day

Birch woods


Loch Kinord has been looking especially pretty with the yellow birches. There’s just something about reflections on water that makes things extra-beautiful.

Autumn reflections

Loch Kinord

Loch Kinord

Looking glorious

And I can even bring myself to like bracken at this time of year too….when it’s dying.

Autumn bracken

Autumn bracken

The wildlife has been pretty quiet this week. But we did have some lovely, shy, wary redwings just outside the office window, scoffing whitebeam berries. All the rowans have gone already and a lot of the flocks will move south and west in search of new food sources.

Redwing eating whitebeam berries

One food source that often lingers through the winter is rosehips. They are usually one of the last things the birds go for and the seeds can provide food for birds like bullfinches well into winter.


The adders seem to have gone underground for the winter – none this week, even on the warmer days- but the amphibians are still on the go. This frog was risking the frost one morning (thanks for the pic, Rachel) and the newt survived the attentions of Finn the Forvie Reserve Dog …thought it was a high-risk strategy, going for a dip in the dog bowl!


Newt in dog bowl

Forvie ‘reserve mascot’ Finn deciding he’ll drink the water once the newt leaves…..

The work on the septic tank and car park has fairly progressed during my fortnight off, with the car park being finished (wayhey!), the new sewage treatment system having arrived and been installed and the secondary treatment wetland being half built. The lads are fairly cracking on! We still need to get the interior of the toilets done up and this should happen over the next fortnight or so, when there will be portaloos in the car park. But it won’t be long until it’s all finished!

Car park finished!

new sewage tank!

It’s also gotten a lot darker in the mornings since I’ve been on leave. The one good thing about getting out of your pit at that time of day is that you se some cracking sunrises at this time of year. When the clocks go back over the weekend, try and make the effort to rise early one day and just appreciate the sunrise – it’s well worth it!

A burning sunrise over Loch Davan

Glowing sunrise





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