We are pleased to offer this new course in the stunning sea loch of
Loch Ailort on the West Coast of Scotland. The area is a fantastic place
to observe many of the iconic Scottish species - for example, otters,
red deer, pine martins, Scottish wildcats, eagles, and seals.
The course will be led by our chief instructor. Leon Durbin is an experienced
wildlife ecologist who lived in Scotland for 10 years and has recently
returned to live in Lochailort. He has conducted scientific studies
on several local species (e.g. otters, grouse, foxes). He has a PhD
based on his research on otters and has published several scientific
papers on the subject
His local knowledge, expertise and enthusiasm will give you the best
opportunities to observe and understand the wild animals and plants
of the area.
You will spend four full days looking for and observing and exploring
the ecology of the area. We will do our best to get you sightings of
the key animals (though this can never be guaranteed). We will also
be looking at marine life in rockpools, and plants of the area so that
in addition to the charismatic animals you also build up a picture of
the ecology of the area. We may travel to nearby areas by car if we
feel it will improve the chances of seeing particular species.
You will learn about:
- animal tracks and signs,
- stalking and the best places to see animals and get photographs
- the behaviour and ecology of the animals you are seeing
- the identification of trees and herbaceous plants of the area -
their role in the ecology of the area and their uses for people
- coastal ecology and wildlife
- how to live close to nature with minimal impact and disturbance.
11-15 May 2012. We will meet at 18.00 at Lochailort on 11th and
the course will end at 17.00 on 15th.
During the course you will have the option of staying in our 17
foot tipi at the Wildwood base or you can camp there or arrange B&B
You must be over 18 years old to attend the course without a parent
or responsible adult
You should have a reasonable level of physical fitness as there
will be some walks of several kilometres.
The price £420 includes instruction, and all food while on
the course, plus meals and camping accommodation. Food will be cooked
on a rota basis by course members. During the trip we will prepare
meals which include locally produced or foraged ingredients, and
which are free range and/or organic wherever possible - you should
not go hungry!
To reserve a place now you need to pay a deposit of £100
- the balance is due two calendar months in advance of the
Client quote (from similar course in Inverpolly):
"The instructors' knowledge of the local ecology was second
to none. I feel like I learnt so much! They were very appoachable,
and knowledgeable. I asked them so many questions about the local
wildlife, and amazingly they always seemed to know the answer no
matter how obsure the question seemed to me! I came home feeling
a little tired but completely stress free, and mentally refreshed.
I wish I could wake up every morning surrounded by mountains and
lochs, and hearing the birds chirping around me. The location was
absolutely stunning. I did not realise such vast and beautiful places
existed in the UK. I loved the flexibility in the schedule- allowing
us to choose how we spent some of the time was great. It meant everyone
got to do what they wanted. Loved it!" - D. Helsdon