Northumberland experience

Northumberland has long been one of our favourite birding area,we have been known to say it is almost as good as Yorkshire in our off moments,so we were both very disappointed when due to my being diagnosed with Crohn's Disease we had to cancel our early Summer planned visit to Embleton. After talking to my GP about medication we rented a sizable house in Seahouses and asked the family along for half term holiday. It turned out a week of mixed activities as well as mixed weather.Spending whole days and nights with the full family was fairly new for Chris and myself as we normally have the grandsons at our place. The weather was so wild on the Sarurday that apart from a visit to the local Coop we just took the grandsons to watch,from a safe distance, the waves coming over the harbour walls a pretty exciting sight for adults as well as the youngsters.Sunday was calmer so we did beach walking in the Beadnal area and Chris and myself got our birding heads on looking for a few waders. With Monday spent on the fantastic Holy Island and Tuesday in Bamburgh castle for the lads to see the cannons and the selection of interesting weapons it was time for the family to head back to Yorkshire to organise their Halloween party.

Wednesday was very quiet in the almost empty house we could now get on with proper birding. Stag Rocks and Budle Bay provided plenty of interest with both waders and sea birds aplenty. Star bird here was Grey Plover in part breeding plumage,a bird we do not see very often in our bit of N.Yorks. On Thursday after a walk around Alnmouth and an enjoyable lunch we visited the quiet beach of Boulmer looking for one of our favourite waders,Sanderling. We halked the sands for a while watching birds at sea then spotted a group of wader feeding at a distance. We stood still and kept quiet and after several minutes the Dunlin and Sanderling moved towards us and kept feeding all the way up to where we stood and eventually wandered back to the waters edge totally ignoring us. It felt quite a privilege just to stand there with the birds just ignoring us,highlight of the week I think.Time to leave on Friday so, after packing the car we dropped into the Northumberland Wildlife Trusts reserve at Hauxley for a couple of hours before heading down the A1 to Yorkshire. 

A very interesting holiday which has inspired us to mix family and birding again,it was a good chance to show the youngsters some of the wildlife as well as spending play time with them,we even got some ukulele lessons in.I still found it hard going but the GP's advice on medication was a great help'got a special clinic tomorrow so may get some more advice on relief. 

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