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Closed Season

What a bird.................... My dream of photographing a rouge male Capercaillie started with a 'Final Words' story in BBC Wildlife many years ago, it told the story of a large mad bird attacking everything from photographers to landrovers. My next experience was the classic, 'you should have been here yesterday' story, a rouge had taken over a campsite that I regularly used. He soon reduced the camp Cock to hiding under a caravan whilst the hens did not know where to look!!! sadly he vanished a day before my visit, probably as the result of a car door it is guessed.

The bird in the picture is probably the worst kept secret in the Highlands, he has been attacking everything that moves for the last 4 years although some say 6. I will not be giving any details of his location but I will say one thing, if you wish to see a Caper then please visit the RSPB's Caperwatch scheme at Loch Garten, it is a wonderful experience and should not be missed even if views are a little distant.

If you are caught anywhere near this bird or another lek in March, April or May you could end up in big trouble as CCTV has been placed near several leks. This image was taken in February when things are a bit more relaxed, however if you are ever lucky enough to find such a bird a couple of suggestions, firstly keep it secret, secondly limit visits to 30 minutes, whilst attacking you he is not feeding or resting.  

All the best

Ian