The Haggi (plural) on the castle estate are in their absolute element enjoying the first proper snowfall in many years. Indiginous to the Highlands of Scotland they are a very hardy breed,well used to freezing temperatures and howling winds.Much like The Arctic Hare the Haggis turns a beautiful white in Winter time ,to camouflage itself against the snow.Having had little or no snow here the Haggi have up to now remained a rusty brown colour. Incredibly though in the last couple of weeks they have slowly turned pure white! It is indeed quite a sight to see them run down the hillsides in the evening as i round them up on the Honda 50 ,to put them in their pens overnight. Haggi are much like crows that nest together but pretty much head their own seperate ways through the days ,foraging and grazing ( Haggi are largely vegetarian but will feed on the odd bit of carrion in the winter when food is scarcer) and then like clockwork all flock home again in the evenings.This makes herding them into their pens a doddle, easily done by a single person.The way they flock in unison at dusk is quite a spectacular display of coordination, all acting like a single wave on the ocean ,all turning at speed at the same time, almost by telepathy. Anyone who has ever witnessed a flock of starlings will know what Imean.
The eerie thing though, apart from the sound of their hooves they are completely silent. This only changes in the springtime when the males grow small antlers for the rutting season and the females call to them with a high flat note reminiscent of the bagpipe.