Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Farne Island Bird Sanctuary

The sea was a choppy, rolling, forbidding, grey green, the clouds were dark grey threatening rain at any moment, the temperature was on the freezing side of cool and the day out was brilliant.  We'd debated whether to go, a few days ago we were sweltering in full sun, today looked like we'd returned to winter, but go we did.  We caught the boat, 'Glad Tidings IV' from Seahouses Harbour and were treated to a tour of the Farne Islands including the Longstone Lighthouse. It was from this lighthouse that Grace Darling and her father set out on September 1838 to rescue nine passengers from the wreck of the Forfarshire.

Having toured the islands we landed on the National Trust bird sanctuary of Inner Farne.  The island was just teaming with seabirds and I had not expected to be able to get so close to so many varieties.  The puffins were absolutely delightful but timid so getting close to them was something of a challenge. 

The terns got rather closer than we might have liked in making their displeasure known by pecking our heads if we were too close to their nests,  two feet away seemed to be accepted, but one foot was too close.  They actually make a point of nesting around the landing area and the buildings, often in the middle of the pathways.  If you are going to visit make a point of wearing stout headgear, my leather hat was great at resisting their sharp beaks.

This is just a wonderful place whatever the weather.

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