Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Eagles and Salmon - Article IX - Rambling Recollections of Berriedale, Badbea and Neighbourhood – Part D

Article IX written by Alexander Gunn aka A Native of Badbea was printed in the Northern Ensign on 25 December 1879 – Part D

"The grounds of Berriedale reached up the Berriedale, or Millary Strath, about five miles, and bounded by Baymore grounds at a spot called Craignahuilerach, or the Eagle's Craig. Here the monarch of the feathery tribe could be seen perched on the highest craig, or soaring about in quest of his prey. Many a newly-dropped lamb he has picked up from its dam about Borgue, Ray, and neighbourhood. At other times he could be seen rising from the edge of a large deep pool, into which fell a nice little waterfall or cascade, which rushed furiously over the edge of the perpendicular rock above, and from which his majesty fished a fine salmon, for he appears to be as fond of a bit of salmon as he is of lamb."

040 038
A dead lamb dropped by an eagle on the lintel of the old homestead at Rumsdale. The orange rubber ring in the fireplace tells that the lamb was docked by the shepherd then taken by a predator to a safe place and devoured.

The eagles nest Golden Eagle
The eagles nest A golden eagle

"It is interesting to see the salmon leaping over this cascade. The fish bent itself like a bow, and sprang up out of the water, leaping up the face of the cascade. Sometimes he failed in reaching the top, and fell back again into the pool beneath, only to try and try again, till he succeeded in gaining the pool above. Seldom is this pool without a fish, but woe betide the man who dared to fish one. He might as well be discovered stealing sheep. He would not be banished the country for taking the fish, as he might be for stealing the sheep, but he would be banished the estate and all his friends with him, if he had any, least they should be affected with the same disease."

Female salmon part eaten by otter Roy Turnbull Jumping salmon at Murray's Cauld, Philiphaugh
Female salmon part eaten by otter. Note the eggs on the ground above her tail Salmon jumping at Murray's Cauld, Philiphaugh.

25 12 1879 NE (Article IX) part c copy 25 12 1879 NE (Article IX) part d copy A 25 12 1879 NE (Article IX) part d copy B

1879, 17 July NE Original 1 copy B

My Comments:

The Golden Eagle population is now monitored carefully as it has suffered decline in recent years.

Salmon fishing is still a very regulated sport with high fees to be paid for fishing beats and often long waiting lists on estates to 'buy' a beat.

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