I haven’t posted here in a while as I have been very busy and barely near the croft in the past fortnight! I’m away at the weekends filming Sgoil nan Cuileanan (Puppy School) for BBC Alba, myself and Bud are going through the classes along with 11 other dogs and owners. I think it’s due to be shown next April or so.
This means that my parents have been keeping an eye on the livestock. Everything is ok, the chicks are growing so fast (I’ll blog about them soon, with lots of pics) and the eye problem seems to have cleared up from all the sheep. The Kune-Kunes are off to slaughter soon – I have to admit that it cannot come soon enough!
I had the chance to go up the lighthouse in Ness for the first time ever – something I have been desperate to do for years! The lighthouse was built in 1862 so it is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year. I was there today filming a piece marking this for Gaelic news, which should be broadcast before an event in Ness on 20th October. You can get more info on that event from the Islands Book Trust or Comunn Eachdraidh Nis. More pictures are available on my Flickr site.
I made an Air An Lot Facebook page last night and now have enough ‘likes’ to let me post a link! www.facebook.com/airanlot so if you haven’t liked it, please do so!
So this has nothing to do with crofting life, but I wanted to post it anyway as I don’t really have another outlet for it! I was at Scotland v Macedonia last Tuesday and received a message mid-afternoon asking if I’d like to go trackside before the game – heck yeah! Myself and my brother Murdo were fortunate enough to receive these access all area passes!
This was all thanks to Kenny Macleod, a Lochie working for the SFA. Here he is pictured on the right with Craig Levein (Scotland Manager)
Of course myself and Murdo wanted in on the action too, here we are with Craig
I was actually a little bit star-struck when I met him. I had an idea if what I wanted to say but all I could manage was good luck tonight!
I’m not mentioning the game because it was depressing but I will say that Levein is the right man for the job!
Anyway, we took the opportunity for a few more pics before taking our seats. What an experience – delighted! Thanks Kenny!
A dead Minke Whale was washed up on Port Beach today. It looks like it was washed up at high tide early this morning, as it wasn’t there yesterday.
I became aware of it around lunchtime today, when I saw this picture posted on facebook.
As you can see, there is a large growth ballooning out of it’s mouth. There was some discussion about what exactly it was but it appears that it’s either its tongue or, less likely, its stomach, which have swollen as part of the decomposition process.
As soon as I got home from work, I grabbed my camera and went straight down.
You can see the whale on the far left of the beach, beside the rocks.
There was a crowd of around 20 or so people down while I was there
Some media were there too. Mike Skelly, STV cameraman, on the right, and Murdo Maclean STV/Heb News.
There were several people there from the British Divers Marine Life Rescue (BDMLR)there too. They had written something in the sand warning people to stay away because it was toxic etc but no-one was paying much attention and had walked through it dozens of times!
They took some details of the whale, including measuring it’s length while I was there.
The whale was measured at 24 feet. There was some talk earlier in the day that it may be the same whale that was trapped in Leverburgh earlier this month but the BDMLR folk confirmed that it definitely wasn’t, as the Leverburgh one was a juvenile and only around 15 feet long.
There appears to be some uncertainty over how it will be disposed of. One of the BDMLR women said their preferred choice would be to get it ashore and into a landfill. Port is inaccessible for any vehicles attempting to reach it from land so they are talking about getting a boat to tow the carcass either out to sea to be dumped or onto the slipway about half a mile away just within the harbour breakwater. I asked if they’d consider blowing it up but that’s the last resort – disappointing! 🙂
I’ll leave you with a few other pictures I took around Port while I was there. The wee bird is one of my favourites, a sandpiper.
I have one ram lamb for sale this year. Every lamb off his father has sold for £50+ over the last 2 years (I haven’t checked from before that) and his mother is of pedigree stock. I am looking for £100 for him. You can contact me via phone/email/facebook/twitter or you can even come and speak to me! I also have 2/3 shearling rams to sell too.
All is arranged for is year’s sales. The lambs were lifted from their mothers earlier this week and now I’ve been given a date of 14th September for the lorry coming to collect them and take them to Thainstone. Apart from selling a few eggs at £1 per dozen, the lambs are the only income I make from the croft.