Saturday, 11 August 2018

Goodbye Puffins

Saying goodbye is always hard, but it’s even harder saying goodbye to our beloved puffins that we have enjoyed watching so much this season.

However, this bittersweet feeling comes with a big smile as we have seen this amazing seabird mastering the daily challenges present in their colony life and meeting their achievement of raising their puffling (a puffin chick) successfully. It sure has been a good year for them.

A handful of our tommy noddies (how puffins are known locally) are still around the islands bringing food to the last of the chicks to rear, while bigger numbers have been spotted in small rafts of 5 to 20 puffins on the water. A sign that their winter migration to the north Atlantic has started. 

Therefore, the open ocean becomes the puffins’ home for the following 7 months of the year, where they live a solitary life and lose some of the bright colours on their beak, except for the distinctive orange colour in their beak and feet.

 In regard to the pufflings, it is goodbye for a longer time, as these strong chicks will spend around 2 to 3 years on the sea learning essential skills to survive. Hopefully they will return to the Farne islands, so we can welcome them home, while enjoying and sharing a close experience with the ‘clown’ of our seas.

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