One of the things I love about @CastleKennedyGds is that there are so many contrasting watery habitats to discover! We can buzz about between the Round Pond, the White Loch and the Black Loch–spying something completely different each time. It is just so fascinating.

The Black Loch for example has a stony shore so eyes peeled here for water shrimp, caddis fly larvae, adult stonefly and alderfly, mayfly larvae and leeches. No-one likes the thought of leeches sucking their blood do they? Of course they were used in ancient Greece and 19th-century Europe for blood-letting as a cure for various things. And they’re using them again right now – yes- to help heal skin grafts. Wonder where they get them? Maybe we’re missing a trick?

Sticking with the ‘nasties’ for just a little longer, we have lots of fish in the Black Loch too including pike. Big-mouthed with sharp teeth, pike are predatory carnivores and will prey on frogs, toads and newts. Roach do the same and they’re here too so it’s unlikely that we’ll find these smaller creatures here today! Safe enough to look though. This pike we found was dead!

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