Farne Islands; Visiting the “Penguins of the North”

The morning started off pretty nicely, telling an elderly man “What?! You’re chairman of the regional birding society and you’ve never been to the islands??? That can’t be true!”. Waiting in the harbour for the boat to join the full day bird watching tour, we started to chat, apparently he was on his way to his volunteering job on Holy Island, but decided to visit the Farne Islands instead.

This was my fourth and last day heading for the islands. I arranged a week’s trip to see the birds, also known as “penguins of the north”. I planned a stay of 5 days at Seahouses, some extra days because you can never know about the weather. I guess I was lucky, only one day a bit of rain so I visited Holy Island that day, the others I spent full days of photography at Staple- and Inner Farne Island. This trip was actually a lot easier to plan than I thought; an hour’s flight, an hour’s drive and there I was arranging my boat trips to see some birds. The only real challenge was finding my way without a navigation system, a modern first-world problem, and driving on the wrong side of the road, except for figuring out some roundabouts (took a few an extra round) neither of them was a problem.

Later that morning on Staple Islands, while I was watching some lazy Puffins on my favorite spot away from the crowds, someone sat down next to me “I see, you already know your spots here. This one is really nice.” I guess my blunt comment at the harbour, did not keep the chairman from being companion for the day.

A photographic summary of my trip to Farne Islands.

One of the first shots from the boat on the first day, some nice colours that morning and always good to see that wildlife helps out a bit.CVZ6D_20170713-004 WEB.jpg

One of the typical rocks at Staple Island, seen from the boat. These cliffs are usually packed with Guillemots, mid-July is close to the end of the breeding season, so some of the birds had already left until next season.CVZ6D_20170713-061 WEB.jpg

Pretty active bottlenose dolphins near the harbour.CVZ6D_20170713-1138 WEB.jpg

Seals everywhere… even following the boat. Bamburgh Castle in the background.

And of course the Puffins…. clumsy little birds, so funny and beatifull!

Guillemots, some still with with small chicks, and Razorbills, a bit rare on the Islands.

And of course the Artic Terns at Inner Farne. Ever seen the movie “Birds”? Well this is the movie in real life, one day, although I was wearing a cap, I was pecked on my head six times!CVZ6D_20170716-1075 WEB

More photos of puffins, guillemots, razorbills, seals and terns can be found with this link http://bit.ly/2gQJAMj


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