Wildlife and birdwatching on the Northumberland coast 08/08/2010

by on Aug.10, 2010, under Birdwatching, Druridge Bay, Northumberland, Northumberland Coast, Southeast Northumberland

Sunday’s Northumberland coast safari started very close to home, with Germaine and Greg having stayed at The Swan on Saturday evening.  We started with our usual riverside walk, looking at an artificial holt and talking about the ecology of the Otter.  Our first really good sighting of the day was a Red Squirrel, which chattered angrily at a photographer who was sitting beneath the tree that it was descending.  Woodland birdwatching can be sometimes be very quiet, but with a large mixed flock of tits and Goldcrests, as well as Treecreepers and a very aggressive Nuthatch around the same glade there was plenty to see.  Out on to the coast south of Druridge Bay and, in the warm sunshine, our favourite Little Owl was posing for the camera.  The sunshine was also encouraging insect activity and we quickly added to the day list; Common Darter, Blue-tailed Damselfly, Common Blue Damselfly, Meadow Brown, Small Copper, Shaded Broad-bar, Lesser Marsh Grasshopper, Common Blue Butterfly, Green-veined and Small White were all found along one small stretch of footpath.  Grey Herons were stalking along the pond edges and one got into a gruesome wrestling match with a large Eel.  All of the ducks scattered, clearly there was something in the reeds that they were unhappy about, but what it was didn’t reveal itself.  Further north, we came across three Little Egrets (surely the next addition to Northumberland’s breeding birds – if they haven’t already…), a Common Lizard that was sunning itself and, thanks to Germaine’s sharp eyes, a pair of Roe Deer.  A really good day, with a real mixed bag of wildlife and clients who made it all the more enjoyable.  And to think…Sunday used to be homework-marking day 😉

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1 Comment for this entry

  • Germaine

    OK so it was an otter safari and we didn’t spot any otters – thing is I know enough about these elusive creatures to know that it was a long shot and as Martin explained to us the dog otters have a territory of about 12 miles. Thing is it didn’t matter in the end. We enjoyed every minute of the day out. Martin was so knowledgeable, not only about the local wildlife and flora (I really need to start reading plant books!) but also about the local area. We love the area and it was a great treat to see parts of it that may normally have passed by. We had some great sightings. I loved the little owl and the eel and heron battle which the heron obviously won. The day was rounded off with a pair of Roe deer grazing in a corn field. We have a lot of deer locally (Cannock Chase) so it was nice to see some of their Northern cousins. All-in-all an extremely enjoyable day, great company, fantastic lunch and beautiful English countryside. We’ll be back!

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