Friday the 13th- unlucky for some they say, I never was one for superstition though! Ignoring the date I set out by boat to one of my favourite sites, an off shore island. On my way there I couldn't help hoping that by now a female there which I have been watching may well have her cubs out and about by now.
One of the most precious and privileged of all wildlife watching experiences has to be watching an animal as wild and secretive as an otter with infant cubs, out exploring and possibly for the very first time.
These adorable cubs can only be two months old at most, and had very probably been taken by the mother from the natal den to a coastal holt this very day if not long before. It was low tide and I could see the mother off foraging amongst the exposed seaweed not too far along the shore while the cubs, waited on the shore where they would every so often disappear under a large boulder or overhanging earthy bank but never wadling further than a meter or two. From behind an old drystone walled Sheep pen I could watch them through a gap in the wall, totally out of site.
It was obvious by their size alone how young they were bu also how clumsy they were, not yet learned the grace which they will soon use to search these shores. I could see at least two but suspect there was another but could not see the other side bellow the bank and would not have dared moving or changing my approach for a better view. I learned a long time ago that this usually results in them detecting you, if you cant quite get the view or composition you would like then never worry, perhaps next time you will- patience not pesisitance I think is best.