Lockdown Notes

Our next Lockdown Naturalist entry comes from naturalist and seabird scientist, Daniel Turner, at Tynemouth.

The coronavirus pandemic and its effects in our communities have been massive. I have done my best to follow the advice from government and NHS since lockdown here began on 23 March in order to protect myself and others. I have found the experience quite difficult and my mood has frequently been low during prolonged periods of isolation. Getting outdoors for our allowed regular exercise has been essential and each time has lifted my spirits.

Wild Cabbage in flower at Tynemouth Haven © Daniel Turner

With travel restricted for many weeks, I was able to focus on my close neighbourhood and this has been of benefit as I have reacquainted myself with certain features and been encouraged by my observations. The timing of all this in spring has allowed me to see the better weather arrive and bring its progression of new life in all its forms. It is always delightful to see the early spring flowers coming into bloom and watch the arrival of bird migrants. I have also been keen to look more closely at our bumblebees thanks to encouragement from the Natural History Society. The experience may have reiterated the importance of nature in all our lives, not least in our well-being. Perhaps the lockdown has emphasised this to many of us and may bring me to hope that our worldwide wilderness will be protected.

Tyne River mouth looking towards South Tyneside © Daniel Turner

By Daniel Turner, Tynemouth

About the author

Dan Turner is a naturalist, seabird scientist and author from North Tyneside. He has monitored Tyneside’s beloved urban Kittiwakes since 1994 and in 2003, established the North East Beached Bird Survey (NEBBS).