General Diary, 2020 onwards 

(click on pictures to enlarge)

13 September 2020, Sunday, Northumberland


Walked around Morpeth town and river on this bright and warm day. Above the town flew house martins and a swallow while down by the river there was a tall grey heron, mallards and grey wagtail. In the woodland a nuthatch sang clearly from the trees above low brambles with ripening blackberries. Several visitors paddled in their boats on the fine Wansbeck and I crossed the old stepping stones as the river flowed contentedly.

Riverside panel, Morpeth, 13 Sept 2020

13 September 2020, Sunday, Northumberland (second entry)


My sister and brother-in-law, Emma and Chris, accompanied me at Morpeth. Down along the river Wansbeck we walked past sycamores, lime and a strong, low-sweeping horse chestnut tree. I used to come here as a teenager and try my hand at angling with artificial flies. I would wear my angling bag which rested at my hip from a shoulder strap and carried my line, reel, fishing flies and book of knots.

Emma and Chris beside the Wansbeck

Saturday, 18 September 2021, Hauxley, Northumberland


Travelled with three friends … Derek, Paul and Lilian … to Hauxley Nature Reserve, which is just south of Amble, Northumberland. We enjoyed over thirty bird species and watched a cormorant tussle with a wriggling eel as little grebes caught small minnows. Two goldeneyes dived actively and a small flock of ten dunlin dropped in to probe in the soft mud. There were turnstones, bar-tailed godwits, teal and wigeon and a tiny goldcrest which called in high-pitched tone. (Photo: taxidermy dunlin, found dead at Teesmouth on 12 Sept 2010; from the collection of the Northeast England Beached Bird Surveys group).

Taxidermy dunlin from the NEBBS Group collection.
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