Monday, 7 December 2009


River Tweed and Royal Border Railway Bridge.

A reccy of Berwick was required today prior to a group visit at the weekend, and despite hearing a dreadfull weather forecast as I was about to head from home, the day was in fact dry and mild. Several Common Buzzards were seen north of Belford along with the first of several Kestrels seen today and an active flock of Goldfinches.

A short sea watch from the harbour and cliffs brought sightings of 3 Red Throated Divers, numbers of Red-Breasted Mergansers, Common Scoter, parties of Eider Duck and a lone Fulmar. There were also numbers of Cormorant and Shag on and over a wind swept sea. The estuary contained numbers of Grey Heron, Curlew and Redshank, but little else apart from gulls. A flock of Sanderling were busy at the tide edge and a pair of Kestrels hunted over the cliffs.

The best part of the day was the walk along the Tweed from the town centre up to the woodland. The weather was on the change and whilst the lowering sun shone through thin layers of cloud at times, it became clear that it would not belong until rain arrived from the west. A numbers of Grey Herons stood statue like on the small island and numbers of Mallard, Pochard and Goldeneye were on the water. At least one pair of Grey Wagtail were found on the riverside and further up river Greylag Geese, Canada Geese and Mute Swan were found. The calls of Curlew, Oystercatcher and Redshank were heard along most of the walk and several were seen on the riverside and flying overhead and along the river. A flock of 200+ Lapwing were in flight over the river. The woodland pathway was slippery with mud and this area seemed devoid of bird life. The few passerines seen on the walk included Wren, Robin, Dunnock and Blue Tit. Another Kestrel flew overhead, as did a Sparrowhawk.

I haven’t walked the river footpath since childhood, well at least not as far as I did today, past the old castle, so today brought back some happy memories. I remember very well calling at a restraunt with my parents as a child and having fresh Tweed Salmon for lunch. The restraunt seemed very ‘posh’ to me at the time and having salmon for lunch certainly was then!
I was impressed with the Christmas lights in Berwick and they certainly put the annual pathetic show put up in Newcastle. I have to confess however that little ever beats Fenwick’s window display which I have been watching each year since the early 70’s. I hate having to push the kids out of the way to get close, but someone has to do it! The rain kept off until the drive home. We’ll have the day’s bird list to beat at the weekend.


  1. Some nice river shots Killy. I could hear the Hovis bread advert music as i read your account of the salmon lunch.

  2. Ha! I'm not that old John.;-) Cheers Brian.