Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Time to Jump

Well it's that time of the year again as the Guillemot chicks are starting to jump.
On Tuesday evening, during our sunset cruise we watched the chicks take that leap of faith of the cliff faces and into the water.

I know I have said this before but for those who don't know or those who are new to this blog then this is what happens to the guillemot chicks.

Firstly they are called "Jumplings" and this is simply because they jump of the cliffs around the farne islands. Some from a great height and some as a little wiser than others.

When the jumplings are about two weeks old they are ready to leave the farne islands and head out into the big bad world called the "north sea". They are encouraged by their mother to jump of the cliffs into the water were their father will be waiting from them. He will escort them out to sea where he will teach them how to feed and fend for themselves until they are about five years of age and then they will return to the farnes and look for a partner of their own.
After a year in the north sea growing big and strong, the jumpling starts life on his/her own as their father leaves them and returns to the farnes to prepare for the breeding season once again.

Its a tough old world being a seabird and you have to take your hat of to them for doing it.

You will be probably wondering how the jumpling does not hurt itself it they hit the rocks on their way down. Well they are light enough to bounce and their bones are not properly formed so it does not hurt them. Clever eh.....

Anyway here is a few pictures of those cute jumplings.






















Monday, 13 June 2016

Bottlenose Dolphins

I have never blogged about the dolphins so far this year as we have seen them loads and I thought that everyone might get a bit bored of hearing about them.
While on the boat the other day someone asked me if we had seen the dolphins this year. When I replied yes, they said well why have you not blogged about them. When I explained why I was told not to be silly and get some pictures put up.

Since I have put in my place I have decided to obey this person in question and show you all some pictures of these wonderful creatures.





 On a much sadder note we spotted a Bottlenose Dolphin in a bad way on Saturday 4th. I got a call from my friend saying that he had spotted something but he was not sure what. He told me to keep my eyes peeled and let him know if I found anything. Sure enough we saw a lone Bottlenose Dolphin struggling for air and could hardly dive. We slowly put the boat beside her/him to see if there was any net or something that was that was obvious that we could help. Unfortunately there was nothing but lots of scratches which might suggest that she/he had been in a fight, which is not uncommon.
We decided to leave her/him alone as we did not want our guests to see it in a state. It was so hard to leave but what could I do? If she/he had net or rope around there tail then I would have sorted it but sometimes you just have to stay away and let nature sort itself out.

This is when I wished they could give you a sign to let you know what the matter is but this is not the case. I felt very sad leaving and helpless I could not do a thing to save her/him.   








   

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Serenity 3

We are pleased to announce that we have eventually got another catamaran and she's called Serenity III. She is a smaller version of Serenity II but good things come in small bundles.

She has been in the boat yard for sometime now, but she is eventually home in Seahouses harbour were she belongs and ready to take our guests out and enjoy the wonders of the farne islands. 

My brother has done a vast amount of work on this boat and deserves a massive pat on the back for it. The paper work alone has been mind blowing but he did it and when you look at the boat its a job very well done.

This was an old boat we bought so it was a little bit harder getting her back into working order. We had to save as much as we could of the old boat but the wheelhouse was irreparable and the MCA agreed that we could put a new one on her. We did do a few new things but they just made sense and it would have been silly not too.

Since we got Serenity II and we found out just how good catamarans are it just made sense to get another one and we are really pleased with her so far.

So if you don't have sea legs then our catamarans are the boats for you, and if the like a boat with 360 degree views and the perfect platform for viewing the farne islands then look no further than Serenity II and Serenity III.




I recognize some faces on board her too and I hope they are enjoying our new boat. Remember "Sir"



 

Sunday, 29 May 2016

It must be love....

Sometimes you see things around the islands and you have to take a second look. I noticed a pair of shags enjoying each others company on the edge of the cliff face and it caught my attention.... Ahhh and before you say pervert or a pair of shags, shagging it was nothing like that at all. It was more than that.... it was LOVE...

Their necks were interlocked with only eyes of each other. (until I turned up) They ruffled each other feathers and then gently rubbed bills together. It was beautiful to see and something I will never forget.

The guys on the islands might see this all the time but when you are on a boat and not staying around for long, then you tend to miss all this kind of stuff, so for me its was special to witness.


Number 10 is my favorite but which is your favorite and why? 

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Sunday, 22 May 2016

The Kill

Yesterday (21/05/2016) we witnessed a Great Skua trying to kill a Herring Gull.

Yes, I know you might not think this is a great blog but for me this had to be blogged, just to show you the other side of nature.
It's not everyday you get to see a great skua close up but to witness one killing a herring gull, right in front of my eyes was something different. I have seen them before at the farne islands but not as close up as this one, and I have also seen them bully seabirds for their food which is what they are all about but to see one killing a gull for food is something that I have never witnessed before and a day I will never forget.

I have always been a lover of these birds and I think its their style and aggressiveness that I admire the most.
I know they see other birds with food and they pinch it and I know the other birds have worked hard to catch their food, and for someone to come along and pinch it but you have to take your hat off to them.
They don't just pick on small birds either as I have heard stories from other birders that they have seen  skua's  take down a gannet to get their food. Now you have to have some balls to do that as they are a big seabird but I suppose it's survival of the fittest and these birds just don't give up, so to see one the other day killing a herring gull it just goes to show you that will not stop at anything to survive.

I think the pictures will tell you the story better than I can and the fear in the gulls eyes tells you another story.

For more about these birds have a look here...   https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_skua