Another walk to and from Erith Coal Mine on the weekend produced an Echidna. Serendipity plays a large part in finding them. A naturalist doesn't say, 'Today I will track down an echidna'. The echidna tracks you down.
I love Echidnas for their doggedness, their resolve: they just get through. Up close, they're a colony of sharpened pencils, a conspiracy of minarets, a breathing sea urchin. Their snout is like a dead man's little finger.
This is the fourth or fifth Echidna I've seen in the Highlands.
LJ, November 8 2010.