Purple Haze

by on Aug.27, 2009, under Uncategorized

Having set dates for our new Kielder Safaris only two weeks ago, the route was almost as new to me as it was to our clients, Helen and Steve. Having someone who is both a client and a friend as the first participant helped to calm any ‘first night’ nerves.

Collecting the couple from Alnwick we headed through Rothbury and across to Bellingham. The first part of our Kielder Safari route is the special bit; it isn’t open to vehicle access by the general public and, from the mobile hide that is our Landrover, who knows what could be seen along the way. Soon we were enjoying close views of Stonechats, Meadow Pipits and a Siskin that was almost in the vehicle with us as it fed on a thistle head. Along the narrow forest tracks we had close prolonged views of Common Buzzards – something I’ve never managed on Northumberland’s ‘normal’ roads. Dragonflies were patrolling the tracks and butterflies were all along our route. When we left the Landy and set off on a short walk, the thing that struck us all was the quantity, and diversity, of fungi. A Southern Hawker Dragonfly inspected us closely as we passed through it’s territory and we made our way down to the edge of the reservoir. As well as tree-roost of 14 Cormorants, highlights were a screaming Jay, a yaffling Green Woodpecker and a Dipper that flew low over the water.

Our route out of Kielder is also along a forest road and we had good views of more Buzzards, five Wheatears lined up on adjacent fence posts and Mountain Bumblebees. Perhaps most impressive though, is the sight of the heather on the moors in bloom.

Our next Kielder Safari is on Thursday September 3rd so why not give us a call on 01670 827465, we’ve got a few places left. Dates for 2010 will be sorted sometime soon.

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