It was a wise decision to call in the helicopter for the Autumnwatch team as Saturday was dominated by strong southerly winds, reaching gale force for a time. The next few days appear to be changing little and life on the Brownsman will be restricted, once again, by the mistress that is known as the North Sea.
However work doesn't stop and I made my first visit onto the north beach since the BBC had departed and was delighted at what I found. As the autumn progresses more and more seal pups will be born on a daily basis and I was greeted by numerous more new pups scattered across the pebbled beach. However it was Nemo which attracted attention and WOW, has he grown!! Despite loosing his mum, then adopted by the crazy 'quadruplet' mother, he now has a new foster mum and is doing very well for himself. Nemo has put on the lost weight and is looking a good size for his age. It won't be long before he moults and we'll be saying a fond farewell to this little guy, who, by one way or another, will make it into the big world of first-year Seals. As for Lucky, well, no change, he's well on his way having enjoyed a 'normal' upbringing. Its been some story and more photographs will appear of Nemo and co very soon.
As for the rest of the Seal colony, all is well as the the north beach and the majority of the Farnes seal colonies are well protected from the southerly gales and things are looking up. Away from the seals more migrant birds are pouring through the islands including up to twenty Waxwings. However its the discovery of an impressive Great Grey Shrike on Brownsman which captured the imagination, as the bird lingered throughout the day. These fearsome birds, prey on small birds and sadly two Goldcrest and a Robin were lost to this robust visitor. However it was a delight to watch in action and he'll be heading west to winter in some remote part of Britain. Otherwise all was quiet on the Farnes and things are now starting to settle after two weeks of Autumnwatch, as November advances.