One of the greatest wildlife watching days to date occurred today in the beautiful setting of the Laune river, co Kerry. It was the day when I witnessed my first wild otter in Ireland.
The beautiful sunshine and lack of fish had led me to a quiet moment on the bank in my deck chair. Suddenly my eyes caught the movement of a wake of water heading across the Laune. Grabbing my glasses I managed to catch a glimpse of a sleek back sliding out into the bank. Like that the otter was gone. I couldent believe my eyes. I doubted what I had just seen as trick of the new spring sunlight
I dropped the fishing gear and scoped out the bank and was able to discern a couple what I think were otter access points in the far bank.
I decided to investigate at closer quarters. Heading back over the bridge I entered the fossa way and was walking with purpose along the man made walkway when there was a disturbance in the water beside me. To my disbelief there was an otter who I had inadvertently disturbed from fishing amongst the tangle of flooded branches. The otter swam out of the channel lopping up and down and blowing out those distinctive bubbles that I had heard about on spring watch and read about in books. I manage to fumble some photos before the supine shape disappeared from sight.
Exhilarated I searched the water to no avail. Had I seen the last if the otter? To see an otter in broad daylight is rare and I felt immensely privelage do to witness this.
I crossed at the bridge and following a hunch that only nature lovers will understand, I walked back up to the spot that on the previous day I had found old otter spraint. Suddenly a splashing broke the silken silence if the stream. In the distance and otter was attacking a large fish which I presume must be a salmon. The thrashing and bashing went on for about a minute. Tail and head flew in and out of the water. Eventually all went silent. The otter had a substantial feast and I had an equal feast of nature that can be said to be once in a lifetime event. Wondrous.
am a wildlife photographer based in Co. Wicklow, Ireland, who has an
affinity for Ireland's landscape and wildlife. The magic of Ireland is
truly evoked in the marriage of landscape and light.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.