Farne Island – July 2018- Part 2- Puffin-fest

Puffins!!  This is the main reason we go to the Farne Islands, to see the huge colony of  puffins that come here to breed and we try to get some in-flight shots, which are SO difficult because the buggers fly at supersonic speed! There are 3 types of Puffins but here in the UK we get the Atlantic Puffins.

Puffins form long-term pair bonds or relationships. The female lays a single egg, and both parents incubate the egg and feed the chick (or “puffling”).

kisses ❤

The Dads dig out the nests, or use rabbit burrows if there are any about. 
Puffins eat both fish and zooplankton but feed their chicks primarily with small marine fish several times a day. The prey species of the Atlantic puffin include sandeel, herring and capelin. They also have the ability to hold several (sometimes over a dozen) small fish at a time, crosswise in their bill, rather than regurgitating swallowed fish. This allows them to forage far wider than your bog-standard one-fish-at-a-time sea bird, as they bring back much more food in one go. And I think it’s much more pleasant than vomitting up into your chicks gob!

Now’s not the time to ask a question.

Puffins are hunted for eggs, feathers and meat. Atlantic puffin populations drastically declined due to habitat destruction and exploitation during the 19th century and early 20th century. They continue to be hunted in Iceland and the Faroe Islands. In fact  the Atlantic puffin forms part of the national diet in Iceland, where the species does not have legal protection. Puffins are hunted by a technique called “sky fishing”, which involves catching the puffins in a big net as they dive into the sea. 
Their meat is commonly featured on hotel menus. The fresh heart of a puffin is eaten raw as a traditional Icelandic delicacy- seriously guys??   On the small Icelandic island of Grimsey as many as 200 puffins can be caught in a single morning

Lads I think we’d best cancel that holiday to Iceland!

Puffin populations are in decline.  Puffin records on the Northumberland coast archipelago date back to 1939 when 3,000 breeding pairs were recorded, and every census until 2008 showed a steady increase in pairs. But in 2008 numbers fell by a third, from 55,674 to 36,835. This is thought largely due to the impacts of climate change.

gonna be lonely on Farne

Erpur Snær Hansen, director of ecological research at the South Iceland Nature Centre, says  if surface sea temperatures remain at current levels or higher, the entire puffin population of south and west Iceland will disappear in the next 10 to 20 years.  Maybe if they didn’t eat so many…

landing gear down

Although the puffins are noisy and shouty at their breeding colonies, they are silent at sea. They fly relatively high above the water, typically 10 m (33 ft) as compared with the 1.6 m (5.2 ft) of other birds.

silent running

Next time we’ll look at some of the other inhabitants on Inner Farne, but here’s a few more puffin pictures until then..

fasten your seatbelts and prepare for lift off
Make sure you’re home by 10, this isn’t a bloody hotel you know!

Patience

Farne Islands July 2016~part 2

Part 1 HERE

So once we got to Inner Farne, we first came to the Arctic Terns, and their bambino’s

Feed me now Seymour!

but then we moved on to puffins!
Some in-flight shots were attempted..

was quite pleased with these as they really zip along and I have to admit a fair few frames had just the tail end at the edge of the shot! Not an easy job!

incoming!

in the naughty corner

If I don’t turn around maybe she won’t see I’ve got a gob load of fish

Playing Hide and seek

maybe they’ve forgotten about me

that’s lunch taken care of

I’m on the edge I tell ya

The Chubb twins

There’s always one!

got some for me?

Part 3 tomorrow 🙂

Day 196~366 (and puffins :) )

Have been processing my photo’s from the Farne Islands today so am going to post just a couple, well 4 really 🙂

Firstly a baby Arctic turn shouting for lunch

FIJuly16-28w

next up 3 puffins on a wall.

FIJuly16-49w

I am not sure why lots of the puffins were just sitting around or walking about with a gob full of fish, not eating them, just keeping them.

At last a half decent flying puffin shot! (I only deleted about 100!)

FIJuly16-32w

and finally, ta dah… my first ever dolphin sighting.

FIJuly16-65w

I’m afraid my telephoto lens is a cheap and nasty knock-off-nigel, but I can’t afford a proper one, so the overall quality isn’t all that great, sigh, but it’s enough for me to remember what I saw through my eye lens 🙂 Plus with the dolphins I was in the inside of the boat and couldn’t get to the outside bit and had to shoot through the glass window!

Today the sun shone for a little while late this afternoon, so I found some more shadows.

day196
day196

The Farne Islands revisited.

previously on Farne Islands.. part1  part 2

We got lucky with the weather yesterday for Sophie and I’s return to the Farne Islands. Blue skies all day until home time, when it bucketed down, but we were in the car by then and didn’t care. As we’d only been a few weekends before, we just concentrated on getting shots of the puffins and the seals, as we hadn’t needed the zoom lenses for the shags and terns last time out, but missed them for the puffins and seals. All these are done with the fuji and a 55-230 zoom.

seals
seals

basking
basking

sunbathing
sunbathing

frollicking
frolicking

peeping
peeping

As we got closer to the islands we could see that there were nowhere near as many birds nesting as last time we came, guess all the babies have grown up.

empty nest syndrome :)
empty nest syndrome 🙂

Not as much poo either, so it wasn’t as smelly this time. 🙂

We got straight into seeing the puffins. This is their story 😀

a herd of puffins
Puffin Town

you lookin'at me??
you lookin’at me??

break it up fella's
break it up fella’s

near,far,wherever you are...
near,far,wherever you are…

I know my heart will go on..
I believe that the heart does go on..

I'm over here you idiot!!
I’m over here you idiot!! & stop singing!

your turn
whatcha looking for?

i'll see if I've got it
i’ll see if I’ve got it

you get a better view up here don't you think?
you get a better view up here don’t you think?

Mornin' all
Good morning all.

Morning? It's past lunchtime, we've been up hours!
Morning? It’s past lunchtime, we’ve been up hours!

I can do it I can do it!!!
I can do it I can do it!!!

So that’s the puffins, with apologies to Mlle Dion.

There were a couple of other bits of wildlife we came across,

The Hat Family
The Hat Family

Roger
Roger

Kittiwake
Kittiwake

Shag
Shag

Mr.Somebird.
Mr.Somebird.

Mrs.Somebird
Mrs.Somebird

Arctic Tern feeding it's teenager
Arctic Tern feeding

All too soon it was time to get back to the boat, you only get an hour on the Island, to keep numbers manageable.

The view to the landing place was beautiful, our boats waiting in a natural harbour.

Blues and Boats
Blues and Boats

I took a couple of shots on the way back, but mostly just enjoyed the ride.

Farewell Inner Farne
Farewell Inner Farne

WTH??
balancing act

I am sailing..
I am sailing..

FI2-37

Lighthouse
Lighthouse

And my favourite shot of the day is….

A happy tog.
A happy tog.

Puffins just make anyone smile.

And that was our day out. Love the fuji colours, I didn’t have to process these overmuch, just added the Fuji Astia preset in LR and that was it. Will still have to go back at some stage as I cocked up with ‘burst’ shooting mode to get some of the puffins flying. Complete fail, but a good excuse for another visit. 🙂

Back to work tomorrow, hey ho.

laters gaters

😉

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

Gallery

Farne Islands ~ part 2

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Landing on Inner Farne is not fun, lots of vicious arctic terns think you’re here to steal their babies and dive bomb everyone as they get off the boat and peck their heads- advice was to wear a hat, which I did ( and walked fast!) Sophie kindly stood still so I could get a shot of one pecking her head, but boy they are so FAST!

Sophie The Brave
Sophie The Brave

There were lots of twitchers on the island with very long camera lenses, they do make me laugh.

The Big Long Lens Society
The Big Long Lens Society

They were also some Italian people and they were very happy.

The Italian Long Lens Society
The Italian Long Lens Society

This chap reminded me of Timothy Spall OBE  the actor 🙂

auf wiedersehen pet
auf wiedersehen pet

Seashore
Seashore

Our boat coming back for us
Our boat coming back for us

 

people
people

the sea
the sea

When we got back to the harbour, which only took 15 mins on the way back, we had a wander around as blue skies had arrived. Also I’d mostly used the Nikon for the bird shots and wanted the fuji to have some fun too.

guarding the harbour
guarding the harbour

rusty bollard
rusty bollard

nets
nets

buoys
buoys

The Duck Family
The Duck Family

Mum and ducklette
Mum and ducklette

As you might have noticed, I strung all the birds shots into a slide show, the little Nikon did a good job, though it made me laugh standing next to a Big Lens person, but will be going back with my new zoom lens at some point.  Sophie forgot her zoom lens on the day too so we both struggled, but it was a fab day out and we had a good time 🙂

laters gaters

😉