Having lived in Lochaber for 30 years I have witnessed the rise and fall of many of our wilder residents. Some fluctuations are natural cycles, some may be due to global warming, some the negative impact of humans and some unplanned lucky breaks. We often think of wild life becoming fewer and fewer. We are in the “down” part of the cycle for deer, rabbits and partridge but they’ll be back. Coyotes seem to be down but are probably not out. There seems to be a steady decline for moose, black ducks, bats, bob-o-links, barn swallows, cliff swallows, and woodcock. Wild speckled trout are not as abundant as they were when I moved here but each June we get a stocking of hatchery fish. These speckled trout are a considered a “put and take” fish and are not intended to enhance the trout population generally.
But consider our wildlife success stories. There are far more Canada geese, mallards, morning doves, bald eagles, cormorants and bears.
And then … there are signs of some more southern species slowly spreading north. Keep an eye out for your first sighting of a cardinal, a red-bellied woodpecker or a vulture.