Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Missing Salmon Leaping?

Not any more… what about you? Do you know where the nearest Salmon jumping/leaping location is in your area? I would absolutely recommend seeing this breathtaking Autumn spectacle if you are out and about just now.

For those visiting/living in Perthshire, Scotland you can find a list of some locations here. I’m going to check out a few others now! This is the thing, I’ve found with garden/nature watching over the last five years, you often miss what’s in your own garden/on your own doorstep.

If you have any Salmon Leaping locations you would like to share (from whatever part of the world) please do add them in a comment or email me them. If I get lots of locations I’ll update this post listing them at the end.

Last year, visiting The Hermitage at exactly the same time, we were completely oblivious to what was going on in the River Braan and especially at the main waterfalls – which I now know are Black Linn falls. Last year, I didn't take my video camera. I was just out trying to get pretty Autumn photos but that post took an unplanned topic change with pretty and ugly images.


Ossian's Hall image taken from Wikipedia. See source here.


We would always take the walk from the car park to the viewpoint at Ossian’s Hall to see the incredible loud and fast flowing waterfalls. On our visit last Sunday, we had great difficulty getting parked in either of the two car parks at this National Trust for Scotland location.

The carks parks were certainly buzzing with people. Lots of walking boots, cameras and locally made ice creams & takeaway drinks could be seen. My daughter and I enjoyed ice creams while other families were seen with picnics.

I’d like to briefly step on a ‘picnic table’ here and say (in my opinion) television programmes like BBC’s current series of Autumnwatch have had a role in the increasing numbers of people getting outdoors and enjoying what it has to offer. I’m sure many will feel healthier both physically and mentally now too.

It will be an absolute travesty if any future BBC cuts take progammes like this off our screens as they ultimately connect to an audience (especially children) that could offer support to wildlife conservation now and in years to come when it is likely to be needed - be it volunteer/financial. I’m off my ‘picnic table’ now :-)

I’d like to dedicate my Salmon Leaping video, shown below, to the team behind BBC Autumnwatch. Don’t laugh now… I know it’s not remotely to the standard of film captures of Leaping Salmon by Charlie Hamilton (in Scotland) shown on the programme last Friday. However, after seeing this I was inspired to head outdoors to see this spectacle for myself. Being completely honest, when I carried my tripod along to the likely viewpoint I didn’t expect to be using it… how thrilled I was that I did. I'm in awe of these Salmon now :-)


My video of Salmon Leaping up Black Linn falls on the River Braan.
(watch volume settings - background music & noisy falls)


Finally, just a couple more plugs for Autumnwatch, Salmon watching and BBC Wildlife filming. The Autumnwatch programme has live cams on Badgers this week if you want to see them. I've taken a few looks but so far haven't spotted any Badgers. You’ll find times when the Live Badger Cams are running here. Now that I've posted this link I'll be back this week checking it out. Sorry, don't know if this works outside the UK - you could try.

When I upload videos of subjects I’ve never covered before I always take a look at what is already out. Two videos of Salmon Leaping caught my eye. The first was also taken at the Hermitage and at first glance appears like a family video - but stick with it. I particularly enjoyed the footage shown in the last third of the film taken from steep edges of the river to the side of the waterfall. I wasn't brave enough to go that close sticking only to the path edge.


Video by PuffinLove see source here.
(watch volume settings - background music & noisy falls)


At first glance, the footage by The BBC shown below showing Grizzly Bears catching Salmon does feel a bit horrific on the Salmon when you consider the exhausting journey they take. Yes, I know the clever bears need to eat too. However, as Sir David Attenborough narrates, the sheer numbers of Salmon secure hundreds of successful passes by the Bears for every Salmon caught.


Video by the BBC, see more short videos here.
(watch volume settings - you may want to turn this one up to hear narration)


Is that not just amazing to see? Needless to say this last video wasn't taken in Scotland ;-)

Just a couple more links for you today – this time to a fellow blogger who isn't new to watching Salmon leaping. I didn’t spot this post by David at Orchids, Nature and My Outdoor Life before I went out Salmon watching, capturing video or starting this post. He's got nice photos and from memory he has shown video footage in a past post.

Ah… reading David's post... I see now why the car parks on my visit to the Hermitage were so busy… BBC Autumnwatch posted a few salmon watching links on a blog post on their site - which included David’s area and ours. I'll now take a look through the comments there to see the chat.

So there you go, more proof that nature programmes on television screens takes people outdoors. Oh yes... and for those that are unable to get outdoors or travel to see wildlife spectacles like this... television can allow them to wonder at them too. Just brilliant... well done guys :-)


This post was written by Shirley for shirls gardenwatch in October 2011.

9 comments:

lotusleaf said...

What a wonderful post! I enjoyed watching your video as much as the BBC's.

Liz said...

Hi Shirl,

I haven't seen Salmon leaping for years! We used to regularly go to the Falls of Shin and I remember my parents getting photos of them leaping - obviously not as good photos as these days since digital cameras were but a dream back in the 80's! :D

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I have never seen this spectacle except on tv. I have seen an artificial bridge that was built for the fish to get up a small river out in Washington. That was interesting too. The closest place to see such a thing is on the West Coast. A far away destination for me. I live in the middle of the States. A friend of mine just returned from vacation with smoked salmon from Oregon. That is about as close as I will ever make it to a salmon run. :)

catharine Howard said...

I have seen this at the Falls of Shin. Quite the most incredible sight imaginable.

Orchids and Nature said...

I enjoyed your movie shots of the salmon, it's inspired me to make a short film on the new fish pass in our local area in the town of Burnley.

Mike said...

This is something I would love to witness, looking at the steep waterfall its a wonder how they ever make it up.

Janet said...

I saw salmon jumping up the ladder at Pitlochry years ago. It was quite a sight. Lovely post, Shirley.

Gardeningbren said...

Thanks for showing your video of the salmon jumping and the others you put on blog. It's a pretty awesome event to behold. David also did a great job sharing his experience and so pleased you mentioned him and also he has made a contribution to his town with that video if I remember correctly.

So pleased to read your posts again, knowing you are getting back into the spirit of things and hubby is improving steadily. Enjoy your autumn to the fullest!

shirl said...

Hello everyone, apologies once again for my slow replies. Thanks, I do appreciate all your comments :-)

Lotusleaf, you are kind :-)

Liz, I keep hearing about that spot. Sounds a wonderful memory :-)

Lisa, Your comment did make me smile :-)

Catherine, again another mention of this spot. I must see where it is for another year :-)

David, thanks. I must take a look and see if you have posted your film :-)

Mike, this was the first time I had seen this and it absolutely incredible that they get up there :-)

Janet, ah (blushing now) Pitlochry Dam was just too familiar a location for me as a teenage that I found it all boring then and couldn’t see what the fuss was about :-0

Brenda, delighted you’ve enjoyed the salmon images. David has some great pics too. I’m trying to get back to normal but the gap between posts just says lots still going on and routines at home are not what you’d call normal. Thanks. My husband is improving but fatigue is still a problem. He’s very lucky just to be bothered by that though as the outcome could have been quite, quite different :-)