Okay, maybe I made too much of all that noise last night. It wasn't as bad as I made out because that spaniel did stop after being let out and by the time we went to bed, hardly another sound was heard.
The Farne Island cruise had been booked for 10.15 am. We arrived in Seahouses public car park by 9 am, good job too because it was filling fast. By 10 am, we were waiting for the Serenity tours boat. I had my reservations about seeing those Puffins with beaks full of silver fish, because not landing on the island meant my photo opportunity would be reduced. I was right. Plenty of Puffins flying, some with their beaks holding numerous fish, but trying to photograph a flying bird on a boat rocking in sea swells was almost impossible. This was the best of the bunch,
As we approached Farne Island, plenty of Kittiwakes, Shags, Razorbills, Puffins and Guillemots most with chicks and there was a good colony of Seals as well. We were also not alone, several other tour operators waited their turn to approach after the Serenity boat had left.
|Longstone Lighthouse is still in active use, this lighthouse was built in 1826, electrified in 1952 & automated in 1990. It is also famous for the light keepers daughter, Grace Darling, who saved 9 crew when the paddle steamer Forfarshire was shipwrecked on the island.|
|A fishing boat shipwreck on one of the Farne Islands. One of the island is supposed to be consecrated ground because monks buried the shipwrecked sailors here. It is believed that over 300 graves are on the island.|
|Guillemot returning to feed the youngster. We think it was this one in the water below.|
There were a few dead birds, a horrible sight, and I can understand now why the islands were closed. Not all birds died of Avian Flu, though. We watched as this gull snatched a young guillemot chick.
The two hours were almost up, so back at high speed to the harbour. I must say, although the cruise and commentary were excellent, I felt hugely disappointed that we couldn't get near to the Puffins burrows. My camera was just not man enough for those distances and blurred photos was the result.
|The boardwalk along the walking route on the island.|
On arrival at the harbour entrance, we had a delay. One boat was waiting to go in, it meant the skipper having to keep the boat steady and of course it meant a greater swaying of the boat now that the engines had stopped. Some folk looked decidedly queasy!
The reason for the wait, a boat was coming out. Surely there was room enough for both boats? When it was finally our turn to go in, the reason became obvious.
Only one landing site available because of low tide. Passengers had to be dropped off and new ones boarded before any other boat could enter. All took a lot of time, those new passengers on this boat had quite a wait!
And a few more photos of the day,
|Top left possibly a Turnstone. The rest are Starling fledglings.|
|Lions Mane Jelly fish|
|Eider ducks and ducklings|