Sunday, 31 July 2016

The truth about Scottish Wildlife: Part 1 Aberdeen

Greetings nature lovers!

This is the first of a two part series in which my aim is to expose the truth about wildlife in Scotland.

Too often, would-be visitors are presented with an appealing vision of a land teeming with red squirrels, sea eagles, osprey, otters, pine martens, bottle-nosed dolphins, capercaillie etc.

Yes, appealing, most certainly. But whilst all the above mentioned creatures can indeed, with patience and planning, be seen in specific corners of the country, it is undeniable that for most unsuspecting tourists, a different reality awaits.

As they say, forewarned is forearmed.

Let me introduce to you the Aberdeen Seagull (strictly speaking the herring gull, Larus argentatus).

Found in large numbers all over the city, but particularly prevalent on roof tops around the harbour, he (or she) has an enthusiasm for marking motor vehicles unmatched even by the most territorial of intact male pups.

These vocal local residents are up bright and early and will do their best to ensure that you are too.

Although in general they are unfussy eaters, one renowned member of the species is on record as having a particular fondness for Tangy Cheese Doritos…

But wait! Why am I telling you all this when we have a local avian star who can give it you direct?

Meet Steven Seagull...

(Gail says she hopes that readers will be able to decipher Steven's distinctly Aberdonian accent and vocabulary, but surely that could never be a problem…?)

For Part 2 of the series we shall focus on the wildlife of the Western Highlands.

Watch this space.


  1. Hari OM
    &*<>.... Ah've got Steve Gull's 87 cousins ower here, ken an thon critters are behavin' as all gulls shuid; takking the fash frae the watter and chasing the shrimpy boats at dawn. Dinny see them much aroon the picnic spots. Nae too much... Canny wait till you dish oot the dirt on the West Life, Bertie lad... Hugs and wags, YAM-aunty xxx

  2. I woof have thought that Scottish gulls eat nothing but haggis! We live in Vancouver, BC, where the herring gulls woof all the McDonalds french fries they can get.They also love splashing the cars. Maybe Canada is a lot like Scotland.
    Your pal,
    Louis Dog Armstrong

  3. Dear Bertie. We had to get our Dad to translate that for us! But we so enjoyed it, thank you. We have not met any East Coast gulls yet, but the ones on our western beaches share Steve's dietary choices. One of those gulls stole a chicken leg from our E.rabbit sister when she was a very little girl. She still waves her arms and hollers at them when they come anywhere near
    Gus n Teka

  4. OH MY word Bertie those gulls sound like a cat with a long tail trying to get out of a room full of rocking chairs...geezzzz
    and their aerial poop bombs WOW I hope they don't land on your head or Gail's
    Hugs madi your bfff

  5. We know all about seagulls butt do not have one like Steven!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  6. oddly enough we rarely see seagulls - there is sometimes one group of them near the breakwater but most of them seem to follow the shrimp boats out

  7. Brilliant! love your series Bertie. Can't wait to find out the wildlife you'll feature from the Western Highlands!


  8. Bertie, we would like to see what happens to a WFT-about-town who borrows chips from a shop....would it be seen with humour? We think not.

    Love the Gull's advice. Would make a good litter compaign. Gave us a laugh this morning.

  9. LOL, yes we certainly did notice Steven's accent. Would you believe we have seagulls here, too - even though we don't live near the sea. They are around Lake Michigan and have distinctly Chicago accents.

  10. Bertie - When down by the harbour always keep your eyes turned skywards.

  11. Those birdies really do let it all out! Why it is like they cleaned out the cesspool all over the car. I guess that comes from eating the Doritos.
    Thanks for being a friend
    Sweet William The Scot

  12. Bertie, we know all about these from our local harbour town. Very controversial as the council are considering a cull at the moment.

  13. Oh dear, Bertie, the high school I graduated from was in California and not far from the ocean. We had seagulls everywhere, especially as there was a large front lawn at the school where students would eat their lunches. It was almost a rite of passage to be divebombed by them. I could have skipped that particular honor.