The Farne Islands

Finally managed to get to the amazing Farne Islands last weekend. I have planned on making the trip for the last couple of years but it hadn't quite worked out until this year.

Lying just 2 miles off the coast of Northumberland, the Farnes are about the best place in Britain to get up close and personal with a number of spectacular seabirds (if that's your kinda thing!). The islands are particularly notable for their Puffin colonies (about 50,000 breeding pairs) and their Artic Tern colony. Both birds that are pretty difficult to get close to anywhere else, so was a great photographic opportunity.




Although it's the first bird to leave the Farnes after breeding, a good number of the Guillemots still lined the cliff tops. Laying a 'pyriform' shaped egg, with a pointy end, they don't even need to make a nest on the cliff ledges - their eggs just roll round in a circle if disturbed! Clever buggers...



Was a great opportunity to get close to Puffins and the number of them was so impressive. Still, getting shots of the birds in flight, with their favourite bounty of Sand Eels in their beaks, was a real challenge! Managed to get a couple of decent shots but might be time to save for new BIGGER, faster lens!












Another major draw for me were the Arctic Terns, by far the world's most travelled animal. In my opinion one of the most amazing creatures on earth, the average Arctic Tern can fly over 1.5 million miles in it's lifetime of migration! Experiencing two summers a year and seeing more sunlight than any other animal on the planet, they can easily clock up 45,000 miles every year. Getting repeatedly pecked on the head (and my ridiculously sunburnt nose!) was a small price to pay to see them!








A few more of the breeding species. Fulmar...


Kittiwakes...


Razorbill's...



and Shags (don't laugh, Charlotte!)...