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Pine Martins in Inverness

Pine Martins in Inverness


Postby spiderwebb » Fri Sep 04, 2015 6:49 pm

On the way home from work last week and saw a Pine Martin, unfortunately by the side of the road. But the slip road from the A9 north out of Inverness down to the roundabout for the A96 ???

Pretty sure I wasn't mistaken as I've seen them close up whilst on holiday one year, coming right up to the patio doors.

But never expected to see one, albeit dead, in a spot like this.
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby Sunset tripper » Sat Sep 05, 2015 7:53 am

Hi spiderwebb I have seen a lot of dead badgers in that area and the A96 the last few years. Something Id never seen before. Three times ive seen a live Pine Marten on the road between Dores and Inverness very close to the town. Pity the one you saw wasn't very lucky. There are apparently a lot of Pine Martens in Glen Nevis I have seen them twice in the main Ben Nevis carpark and once when crossing the suspension foot bridge across the river they were fighting on the railings and the ropes of the bridge making blood curdling noises similar to cats. I could see their eyes in the dark and scared them off when I switched my head torch on.
Fairly recently I Watched David Attenborough on the telly getting interviewed and he said he had never seen a pine marten in the wild. Who would have believed that?
Be interesting to hear if anyone else has seen them near or in Inverness
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby Caberfeidh » Sat Sep 05, 2015 9:55 am

I lived in Drumnadrochit for a while, pine martens used to come into my garden and cadge food. They seemed to love digestive biscuits with raspberry jam. Just how they knew they liked this I don't know... I also saw them on the road to Ullapool (alive). I once saw an otter in the middle of Inverness; it was sitting on a rock by the side of the river, unabashed as traffic went past yards away, and folk out for an evening stroll stopped to watch it.
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby Sunset tripper » Sat Sep 05, 2015 11:36 pm

Havn't seen an otter in Inverness though i believe they used to be quite common near the Woolen mill.
Around about 20 years ago I was crossing the River Ness on the suspension bridge in the centre of town en route to the football at Telford st. It was hammering down with rain and there was around about 30 Bolton Wanderers fans looking over the bridge watching either a porpoise or dolphin tearing upstream at great speed. They thought it was the Loch Ness monster :D
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby spiderwebb » Wed Sep 09, 2015 2:02 pm

Amazing really that these animals do frequent the busy areas, guess half the time we're not on the look out as we don't expect it. But I know Pine Martins like jam :D
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby Caberfeidh » Thu Sep 10, 2015 10:36 am

spiderwebb wrote: But I know Pine Martins like jam


But how do they know they like jam? Do they secretly make jam in their little dens in the hills? Do their grannies give them jars of bramble jelly in the autumn? Where did they encounter jam in order to know that they like it? They might adore chicken tikka masala with pilau rice, coriander nan bread and lime pickles but how would they know? I'm beginning to suspect that pixies let them in on the secret...
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby Strider2 » Fri Sep 11, 2015 2:38 am

Even more bizarrely, they like peanut butter as well.
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby dav2930 » Mon Sep 14, 2015 2:27 pm

True, no animal or person can possibly know they like a particular food-stuff prior to being acquainted with it. But my guess is that pine martens have a very acute sense of smell and that once they smell jam or peanut butter from afar they just know they're going to like the taste of it, and that's what draws them. (Most of what we call 'taste' is in fact smell).
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby DonichWater » Sat Sep 19, 2015 11:05 am

We live in rural Argyll and have regular pine marten visits to our bird table (they try to catch the red squirrels). I tried them on jam and peanut butter but they didn't seem that keen - what ours really like are ordinary peanuts. We have a webcam pointing at the feeding area and 90% of our sightings are at night - though we do see them in the daytime occasionally.

pinemartenlarge.jpg
Pine marten on bird feeder


On a more general point - I have heard that pine martens are making a big resurgence, so I am not surprised to hear they have been seen around Inverness. Here's hoping they continue their comeback - particularly as they are supposed to discourage grey squirrels from entering their areas.
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby Owen b » Tue Nov 14, 2017 12:51 am

I've just been reading the WalkHighlands article about pine martens by Ben Dolphin in the newsletter and it reminded me that I have once seen a pine marten. Not being a wildlife expert I had no clue what it was at the time but I checked it out on the net afterwards and it was definitely a pine marten. It was about three or four years ago, I was heading out for either Gulvain or Sgurr Thiulm (can't remember which one, but definitely one or the other, I think probably Gulvain) from the A830. Somewhere along the track going through a wooded glade with the river on the right all of a sudden I saw a beautiful low slung dark red/brown animal about the length of a fox but with a slimmer build with a long thick tail trot from left to right across the path about ten metres ahead of me. It very soon disappeared into the undergrowth so I only saw it for a few seconds but it was stunning.
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby ardy » Thu Nov 30, 2017 5:29 pm

I have just read the same article and we have done quite well with Pine Marten spotting on our visits to Scotland.
In a rental house in Torridon in 2009 they were regular visitors during the day and ate pretty much anything as you can see in this photo. They liked jam on bread and that's bird seed on its nose. They loved fresh strawberries and even jelly babies (we only tried it with a couple).
Martin.JPG


We were amazed to see one in the rental cottage in the middle of Glencoe last year. There is only a small patch of forest around the house and I was wondering if it was an isolated group or if they travelled cross country. I put piles of peanuts out the first day we arrived and they were all gone the next morning. We finally heard and then saw the Marten very late on the last night of our week.

More amazingly this summer in the rental house near Aviemore it was mid-evening and we were in the house with the patio doors open and heard a noise by the kitchen bin. It was a Marten looking for scraps.
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby spiderwebb » Tue Dec 05, 2017 10:44 pm

Brilliant photo, :D :D
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby Brian Mcculloch » Wed Dec 06, 2017 12:17 pm

Too bad. A beautiful creature, must have been knocked over by a car.
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby Caberfeidh » Fri Dec 08, 2017 1:12 pm

ardy wrote:There is only a small patch of forest around the house and I was wondering if it was an isolated group or if they travelled cross country.

Pine Martens don't really need the "Pine" part ; there are places in the highlands devoid of trees where the martens have taken to living in holes among the rocks in scree and rock piles on bare hillsides. These areas have plenty of hunting prey like voles and ground nesting birds like grouse, ptarmigan and lapwing.
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Re: Pine Martins in Inverness

Postby onsen » Sat Dec 09, 2017 4:03 am

Nice shot Ardy...waay too cute. :wink:
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