Where to Watch Wildlife in the North East: Gosforth Nature Reserve

Diligently managed by the Natural History Society of Northumbria since 1929, Gosforth Park Nature Reserve, located on the peripheries of Newcastle, is a true hidden gem. One of the North East’s oldest nature reserves, the site is unique as far as urban wilderness areas go: a designated Special Site of Scientific Importance (SSSI) boasting an…

The Post Christmas Escape

Dawn broke overhead as I took my first, adrenaline-fueled steps into the reedbeds of Gosforth Park Nature Reserve, the grey-blue sky, a vestige of the previous frigid night,  soon yielding to pleasant silver as the day got underway. The only lasting remnant of the darker, colder hours before coming from the veil of fog lingering…

Take a Stand for Gosforth Park Nature Reserve

We have seen the same story play out time and time again in the North East, as developers buy up our scant remaining green space and build, build, build absent consideration for the environmental impact of their actions. Normally, such developments are difficult to dispute: the benefits of housing overruling the needs of any particular…

A rare record in Newcastle

European Hornets really are fearsome looking beasts: significantly larger than their more abundant cousin, the wasp, and boasting both a menacing set of mandibles – used to great effect to shred insect prey – and a particularly large stinger. They are also rather striking, clad in alternating shades of warm red, yellow and black. A…

Hairstreaks in the morning sun

Traversing the dappled woodland of Gosforth Park Nature Reserve earlier today, I had only one thing in mind: hairstreaks. Purple hairstreaks, to be precicse, Neozephyrus quercus, a remarkable, handsome butterfly that spends the majority of its time high in the canopy. Feasting on honeydew in close proximity to the species larval food plant, oak. Unlike most…