17/05/2018 The Farne Islands, Northumberland

Razorbill: I've only ever been to Farne and landed on Inner Farne once before, back in June 2013 when I successfully twitched the Bridled tern so decided this is where i would like to spend my birthday mini-break.
We stayed at the very lovely Northumberland Arms in Morpeth, about 30 minute drive from Seahouses. And made it for the afternoon landing on Inner Farne with Billy Shiel's Boat Trips.
Guillemot: Billy Shiel's Boat Trips take you on a tour of the islands before landing whcih gave us some amble views of the sea birds laofing in large rafts on the water and nesting on massive colonies on the short cliffs. This lasts approximately 2½ hours including one hour spent on Inner Farne.
The tour includes a cruise around all the Farne Islands, viewing the sea birds on the cliff faces, visiting the Grey Seal colonies and also follows the route Grace Darling and her father took during their heroic rescue in 1838. A full commentary is given en route and the boat stops at Inner Farne for one hour.
Arctic Tern: I was initially disappointed as I would have like at least an extra hour on Inner Farne, and in all honesty I remained disappointed when I can off as one hour is not long enough. I felt like I was a cash cow as hoards of people are ferried two and from with minimal amount of time. I hear they reduce the time spent on the island to reduce disturbance.
Still this place was fabulous, Farne Islands are simply the treasure of the North East's, this protected wildlife haven off the Northumberland coast is one of the best places in the UK to see some of the best sea birds we have on offer.
Inner Farne and Staple Island are major sanctuaries in the UK for about 22 species of breeding seabirds, including Guillemots, Razorbills, Eider Ducks, 4 species of Terns and a staggering 70,000 Puffins.
Shag Eggs: The boat moored at Farne Island and as soon as we left the boat, hundreds of terns flew above us. Straight away I spotted nesting birds on the ground, eggs and chicks of all ages. I couldn’t believe the number of birds and the close proximity we were to them.

Shag: I was blown away by the number of birds and their reaction to our presence on the island.

Even after seeing footage of visitors to the island getting so close to these majestic birds, I didn’t quite expect how close we would be able to get to them and their nests.

The island is famous for getting divebombed by Arctic terns, but Dawn and I arrived on the day the first tern egg was laid so the whole colony were not in aggressive mode and were not divebombed any of the visitors.
Razorbill: It was incredible just how close you can get,  as the birds roosted between the roped off areas naer the footpath.
Guillemot: The footpath leads to the cliff edge where only a fence separates the people for more nesting birds and the edge itself.
Puffin: Not as many puffins as I was hoping for, perhaps I will go go Skomer to togg them.
Eider Duck: Besides the walkways and paths tucked away were dozens of female eiders incubating their eggs.
Puffin: There were two main areas were you can get close-ish to puffin, and If I had more time I would have sat here for longer.
Still it was great to see these charismatic little birds hopping around the island.
Kittiwake: I can’t recommend visiting the Farne Islands enough. It was an amazing experience and I would encourage anyone who loves nature or wants to get closer to nature to visit the Farne Islands during the breeding season.
Arctic Tern: If you hate flappy birds and feathers, I would give it a miss, around the end of May through to the end of the breeding season at least.
Special thanks to the one and only Dawn who helped organise and came along with me, even though shes one of those people who  hates flappy birds.
Guillemot: We had a wonderful time.