walkhighlands

Record your sightings of wildlife and birds on this board - even better if you managed to capture a photo.
Warning Please avoid giving out the locations of nest sites for rare birds.

Large Cats in Scotland?

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby mountain coward » Thu Oct 29, 2009 7:07 pm

Caberfeidh wrote:
mountain coward wrote:But they won't chase you or anything...


Ahem... have I not told you of the time I was pursued, dressed only in my nether garmentage, hither and yon the length and breadth of the Braes O' Mar by an increasing number of irascible reptiles, after accidentally rubbing on fluid from a bottle which I believed to be of liniment but which on closer inspection read "Female Adder Mate Attractant Pheremone". I only escaped by swimming the Dee near Balmoral. Even then I was mated with by a large salmonid.
Part of some bizarre experiment by the Zoological Dept at Aberdeen University... :wink:


Your fantasies are getting out of hand Caberfeidh! :lol:
mountain coward
 

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby bairdo boy » Sun Apr 27, 2014 12:15 pm

I recently put a post on with a few pictures of what I thought was some kind of cat foot prints. Two people got back to me saying it was a dog, fox or badger. The sighting was 3 miles south of cape wrath light house, very isolated. Do you get dogs, foxes and badgers up there? I have been walking up there for years and aint seen any
User avatar
bairdo boy
Walker
 
Posts: 25
Munros:1   
Joined: Feb 12, 2014

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby Caberfeidh » Sun Apr 27, 2014 2:58 pm

bairdo boy wrote:I recently put a post on with a few pictures of what I thought was some kind of cat foot prints. Two people got back to me saying it was a dog, fox or badger. The sighting was 3 miles south of cape wrath light house, very isolated. Do you get dogs, foxes and badgers up there? I have been walking up there for years and aint seen any


Yesh. I have seen fox and badger at Tongue, not a million miles away, and where people go, so do dogs. The prints had claws, so not a cat.
User avatar
Caberfeidh
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 6675
Joined: Feb 5, 2009

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby Old Stag » Mon Apr 28, 2014 5:54 pm

I thought I saw a big black cat in the hills above Selkirk in 2007. I wasn't 100% sure though and didn't have a camera so I didn't report it. It looked like the size of an alsatian or labrador with a long black tail and that unmistakeable feline slinking gait.
If they do exist thought, wouldn't they be taking sheep? I wonder why they would leave such a large easy prey so well alone.
User avatar
Old Stag
 
Posts: 159
Joined: Mar 15, 2014

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby cmarcol » Mon Apr 28, 2014 8:10 pm

Surely a small number of sheep disappear from farmers herds every year? Who is to say whether the sheep has died and been scavenged or been actively hunted? I don't think they investigate too closely when they lose the odd sheep. I'm sure like me you've come across plenty of rotting and half eaten sheep bodies in the hills.

I'm sure there was a tv programme on ages ago about a woman in Inverness who swore she had been attacked by a big cat. The teeth marks agreed with her story but I can't seem to find out what it was called on google. The show went to the haunted house at Sandwood Bay and somewhere else too if I remember correctly...

My dad used to swear blind he 'saw a panther' once while out walking but he was quite fond of a wee dram or two so could well have been his Jack Russell Terrier.... ;)
User avatar
cmarcol
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 284
Munros:154   Corbetts:8
Grahams:3   
Sub 2000:3   
Joined: Jun 4, 2012
Location: Fife

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby basscadet » Wed Apr 30, 2014 9:15 am

There are a couple of them round about where I grew up in Golspie.. The question is not if they are there - of course they are out there, but whether they are a native species or not. :wink: The fact that there have been sightings on a couple of the islands suggest the latter - why would you bother getting a ferry to set your pet free? Coupled with other facts, like I know a couple of older people who have been seeing big cats all their lives - well before the dangerous animals act in 1976. Also there are records of a pagan ritual called Taigheirm, which involves roasting a succession of live cats on a fire. The cries of the cats were said to be a weapon against demons. Some of the accounts of this rite involve wild cats, but some with large black cats.
This is a quote from a bloke named Horst who witnessed Taigheirm sometime in the 1700's on Mull :-

"The infernal spirits appeared, some in the early progress of the sacrifices in the shape of black cats. The first who appeared during the sacrifice, after they had cast a furious glance at the sacrifices, said—Lachlain Oer, that is, 'Injurer of Cats.' Allan, the chief operator, warned Lachlain, whatever he might see or hear, not to waver, but to keep the spit incessantly turning. At length the cat of monstrous size appeared; and after it had set up a horrible howl, said to Lachlain Oer, that if he did not cease before their largest brother came he would never see the face of God.
Lachlain answered that he would not cease till he had finished his work if all the devils in hell came. At the end of the fourth day, there sat on the end of the beam in the roof of the barn a black cat with fire—flaming eyes, and there was heard a terrific howl quite across the straits of Mull into Mowen."

Very theatrical! :lol:
User avatar
basscadet
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 2779
Munros:84   Corbetts:52
Grahams:18   Donalds:8
Sub 2000:33   Hewitts:13
Wainwrights:17   
Joined: Dec 1, 2011
Location: Edinburgh

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby Caberfeidh » Wed Apr 30, 2014 3:19 pm

cmarcol wrote:Surely a small number of sheep disappear from farmers herds every year? Who is to say whether the sheep has died and been scavenged or been actively hunted? I don't think they investigate too closely when they lose the odd sheep. I'm sure like me you've come across plenty of rotting and half eaten sheep bodies in the hills.


I'm sure we see them all the time and think nothing of it. I just passed one recently...
April 2014 046c.JPG
Devoured sheep
User avatar
Caberfeidh
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 6675
Joined: Feb 5, 2009

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby Old Stag » Sat May 03, 2014 8:13 pm

I saw one just like that on the summit of Cnoc Moy once. I descended the hill rather quickly after that.
User avatar
Old Stag
 
Posts: 159
Joined: Mar 15, 2014

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby Caberfeidh » Sun May 04, 2014 1:58 pm

I asked a shepherd in the Galloway hills about these devoured sheep, and he was sure it was hill-foxes, (these are called Tod in Galloway), which take quite a toll of sheep and lambs, which is why shepherds and gamekeepers shoot them. I was surprised that a fox could kill a fully grown sheep, but it happens. Often the tod will defecate on the carcase to mark it as private property and warn off other tods. On Skye the shepherds have even seen otters killing lambs, again not something I would have thought of. I guess any predator has to take its chances when it can.
User avatar
Caberfeidh
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 6675
Joined: Feb 5, 2009

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby Martin 282 » Wed May 14, 2014 8:17 pm

A few years ago my partner & I were walking high above `kingussie when we saw a white hare running like the clappers. A few few seconds later a v.v. large black "cat" appeared chasing the hare. It had a large tail & we were V. excited chatting about our find, of a black panther, for 2 hrs. On returning to our car a nice woman walked up to us & enquired had we seen her black spaniel anywhere. We told her where it was. We are now somewhat more careful about large beasties on the hills but male wild cats are surprisingly large. I saw one near Ben Eighe about 20yrs ago. They are certainly v. elusive & superbly camouflaged. I would recommend Mike Tomkies books on his experiences with wildcats. His books are really interesting & easy to read.
Martin 282
Munro compleatist
 
Posts: 62
Munros:255   Corbetts:48
Grahams:13   
Sub 2000:1   Hewitts:151
Wainwrights:214   
Joined: Jan 30, 2014
Location: Maryburgh, Dingwall.

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby Old Stag » Mon Jun 02, 2014 3:16 pm

Just on the subject of dead sheep. I saw two on the Balquhidder to Brig O' Turk hill track recently. Should I have called the local farmer or just assume he knows about them. Do they just leave the dead ones on the hills?
User avatar
Old Stag
 
Posts: 159
Joined: Mar 15, 2014

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby Caberfeidh » Fri Jan 12, 2018 12:19 pm

User avatar
Caberfeidh
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 6675
Joined: Feb 5, 2009

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby Ben Nachie » Sun Jan 21, 2018 11:25 am

My mum was once driving through a forest in rural Angus when she saw a car stopped at the side of the road. A man was strapping a large cat to the roof. She said it had distinctive ear tufts so I assume it was possibly a lynx.
User avatar
Ben Nachie
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 321
Joined: Jun 19, 2017

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby Caberfeidh » Sun Jan 21, 2018 12:08 pm

Ben Nachie wrote:My mum was once driving through a forest in rural Angus when she saw a car stopped at the side of the road. A man was strapping a large cat to the roof. She said it had distinctive ear tufts so I assume it was possibly a lynx.


Did it not put up a fight?
User avatar
Caberfeidh
Mountaineer
 
Posts: 6675
Joined: Feb 5, 2009

Re: Large Cats in Scotland?

Postby Ben Nachie » Mon Jan 22, 2018 4:15 pm

Caberfeidh wrote:
Ben Nachie wrote:My mum was once driving through a forest in rural Angus when she saw a car stopped at the side of the road. A man was strapping a large cat to the roof. She said it had distinctive ear tufts so I assume it was possibly a lynx.


Did it not put up a fight?

The cat was no more, had ceased to be, was bereft of life, it rests in peace. This was an ex-lynx.
User avatar
Ben Nachie
Mountain Walker
 
Posts: 321
Joined: Jun 19, 2017

PreviousNext



Walkhighlands community forum is now advert free

We need help to keep the site online.
Can you help support Walkhighlands and the online community by setting up a monthly donation by direct debit?



Return to Wildlife sightings

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests