Friday, 8 May 2009

An impressive pile

I have come across many otter sprainting sites over the years but never one on the scale of this one on the north coast of Scotland. The vegetation peak was about a foot high and clearly visible from a hundred metres away, nourished no doubt by many years of rich dung. Never saw the depositor though unfortunately. Not too many years ago I had to leave my home patch in NE England and travel to the west coast of Scotland to have much chance of otter watching. Now I can go to a mining subsidence pond on the northern outskirts of Tyneside and have a better chance of seeing them. Quite a comeback.


  1. If only man made such aesthetically pleasing additions to the landscape with his, err, spraint - new word for me, I had to look it up! One of my favourite films is about otters - Ring of Bright Water (also a great movie if you like old country buses!)

  2. Thanks for visiting my site and for your comment Rob. Once you get into it dung is fascinating. Spraint is a peculiar word and as far as I know it is reserved exclusively for otter droppings. That's another fascinating side-alley to go down one day - how many other species have a unique word for their bodily excretions?