Talks, Field Trips, Events & Activities

Showing 13 outdoor events

Minke Whale © Martin Kitching



Big Watch Weekend

26th Jul 2014
Saturday 26 – Sunday 27 July.

Environmental Records Information Centre (ERIC) North East ERIC North East is collaborating with local and national marine conservation charities to record sightings of whales, dolphins and porpoises over a “Big Watch Weekend”. July is the best month to see a range of marine mammals off our coastline. ERIC will be recruiting a team of volunteers to help survey at key coastal watching sites and will be running training sessions in marine mammal identification prior to the event. To register your interest 0191 222 5158 or
Roseate Tern



Roseate Tern Evening, Coquet Island

31st Jul 2014
Thursday 31 July and Friday 1st August. 6.15pm.

David Noble-Rollin & Graham Bell.

This is a joint meeting of the North Northumberland Bird Club and the Society to see the Roseate Tern colony on Coquet Island. We hope to get excellent views of both adult and juvenile Terns from the boat which will be offshore near the colony. Other species of tern will also be there for comparison of their identification points. After watching the terns the boat will continue around the island and give an opportunity to look for shearwaters, skuas and seals.

Booking: the cost for the boat is £8.00 for adults and £4.00 for children. Please contact the Society Office to book places.
Dragonfly © Maria Schusler



Introduction to Dragonflies, Derwent Valley Walk

2nd Aug 2014
Saturday 2 August, 11am-1pm.

Expert Keith Gittens will take us along the varied habitats of the Derwent Valley, Gateshead, in search of dragonflies and damselflies. He will help us to find and identify the different species.

Free but booking is required to manage numbers. Please contact the Society Office to book.
Theatre Royal, Newcastle



The Building Stones of Newcastle upon Tyne

2nd Aug 2014
Saturday 2 August, 11.00am-1pm.

Derek Teasdale

The churches, shops, banks and public buildings of Newcastle upon Tyne's city centre are built and/or faced with many types of stone. Whilst most use local sandstones of varying quality, many other buildings proudly display exotic rock types from around the globe. This gentle 2 hour walk will highlight some of the architectural and geologic gems right under our noses.

Suitable for all - beginners and experts alike.

Meet on the steps at the front of the Great North Museum: Hancock, Newcastle (post code NE2 4PT).
Small mammals by veronica carnell



Small Mammals at Weetslade Country Park, Newcastle

9th Aug 2014
Saturday 9 August, 10am-12pm

Leader = Veronica Carnell

We will be examining bait tubes and live traps to see what small mammals live in the park. If we are lucky we should get up close to mice, voles and shrews. Accompanied children welcome. Free but booking is required to manage numbers. Please contact the Society Office to book.



Plants of Hallington Reservoir, Northumberland

17th Aug 2014
Sunday 17 August, 2pm-5pm.

Professor John Richards.

We will walk to the causeway, and examine the draw-down area which has a rich and fascinating flora. Here we should see one of our smallest plants, Needle Spike-rush Eleocharis acicularis in great abundance, together with Shoreweed Littorella uniflora, Marsh Yellow-cress Rorippa palustris, Marsh Speedwell Veronica scutellata, Common Fleabane Pulicaria dysenterica, Amphibious Bistort Persicaria amphibia and many other plants. If we walk sufficiently far round the perimeter, we will encounter the rare sedge Carex oederi.

Meet on the minor road 1km north of Hallington Village at NY983769 (nearest postcode for Satnav NE19 2LR), where track leads to reservoir.
Volunteers managing the reedbed



Volunteer Work Party

30th Aug 2014
Gosforth Park Nature Reserve. Meet at the entrance.

Come along and give us a hand to improve habitats for wildlife. Please wear clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty and suitable footwear (we recommend wellies), also bring with you any drinks or snacks to keep you going. Everyone is welcome, including friends and family, as long as you are able to carry out light physical work. If you have gardening gloves please bring them with you. We will go ahead in rain.
LindisfarneBoat_Anchor_2011 Terry Cavner



Lindisfarne Wildlife Exploration Day

6th Sep 2014
9.30am – 5.30pm (incl. travel time).

Join the Environmental Records Information Centre (ERIC) North East and Northumbria Mammal Group for a small mammal survey and guided bird walk on Holy Island.

This event is suitable for children, it is free and transport will be provided from the Great North Museum: Hancock but booking is essential, call 0191 222 5158 or for more details.



Bats in Gosforth Park Nature Reserve

7th Sep 2014
Sunday 7 September, 7.45pm (1½ hours).

Jonathan Pounder

This will be an evening event starting around sunset and continuing till dark. There will be a short talk on bat biology and ecology, and as the sun is setting we will walk through the reserve looking for and listening to the bats we find.

This event is free but booking is required to limit numbers. Please contact the Society Office to book.
Feral Goat



Wild Goats of the Cheviots, College Valley

14th Sep 2014
Sunday 14 September, 1.30pm.

Join former Northumberland National Park Ranger John Steele for a walk in the Cheviot Hills to see the wild goats that live there. John will help to track down the goats and talk about their origin, behaviour and habits. We will also see other upland wildlife and plants. We won’t know the general location of the goats until nearer to the date, and this will determine where we meet and how long the walk will last, however you should be prepared to walk a maximum of 5 miles (3 hours) in hilly terrain.

This event is free but you must reserve a place so that we can advise you of the exact meeting point nearer to the date. Please contact the Society Office to book.
Fungi Castle Eden Dene



Fantastic Fungi at Castle Eden Dene Nature Reserve, Peterlee

14th Sep 2014
Sunday 14th September, 10am-1pm.

ERIC North East & Natural England.

Find out more about the exciting world of fungi as we venture into Castle Eden Dene National Nature Reserve. Learn how to identify different species and play an active role in their conservation through recording.

This event is suitable for children, it is free and transport will be provided from the Great North Museum: Hancock but booking is essential, call 0191 222 5158 or for more details.



Bird migration at Whitburn Coastal Park, South Tyneside

20th Sep 2014
Saturday 20 September, 6.40am-10am.

Leaders: James Littlewood & Durham Bird Club.

We will be joining the bird ringers at Whitburn Coastal Park observatory to watch them in action and learn about their work. This stretch of coastline has an enviable reputation for migrant birds with Pallas’ Grasshopper, Greenish, Barred, Arctic and Yellow-Browed Warblers all seen last autumn! We will be mainly searching for migrant passerines but will also try our luck with seabirds if the weather conditions are good.

Meet at Whitburn Coastal Park car park, signed off A183 - turn right after entrance and drive to southern end of road (grid ref NZ410635).
Water shrew Gosforth Park Nature Reserve, © Mark Houghton



Small Mammals in Gosforth Park Nature Reserve

27th Sep 2014
Saturday 27 September, 10.30am (1½ hours).

Veronica Carnell

We will be examining bait tubes and Longworth live traps for signs and presence of small mammals (mice, voles and shrews), participants will be able to re-bait and reset the traps after examination if they wish. Accompanied children welcome. Please be prepared for muddy conditions underfoot. This event is part of our ongoing annual national survey for small mammals, which is being co-ordinated by the Mammal Society UK. Volunteers welcome, training provided.

Free but booking is required to manage numbers. Please contact the Society Office to book.

About Talks, Field Trips, Events & Activities

Indoor Events

From October to March the Society invites regional and national experts in the natural world to give inspiring lectures to our members and the wider public.

Lectures are usually held every Friday evening, starting at 7pm, in the learning suite on the ground floor of the Great North Museum: Hancock. The museum is closed to the public at this time, so entry is via both side entrances.

Entry is from 6.20pm and tea, coffee and biscuits are available and the opportunity to socialise. Speakers give an illustrated presentation for 45mins-1 hour and then open the floor for questions and discussions.

On site parking is limited to blue badge holders only. There is a car park nearby on Claremont Road. The Museum is a 300m walk from Haymarket Metro and bus stations. For directions click here.

Non-members are very welcome to attend but we ask that they kindly make a donation on the night to support these lectures.

Outdoor Events

Throughout the year local experts lead field meetings to explore the natural world and magical landscapes of Northern England.

Outdoor events are free to members and their families. Some trips require us to hire boats or pay entrance fees and details of these costs are included in the information about the event.

For most events you can just turn up at the meeting place but some events must be booked in advance in order to manage numbers and this is stated in the information. You must make your own way to the meeting point. Please arrive early so that the event can start on time. Some activities last all day so you may need to take a drink and packed lunch with you.

In order to visit the best places our trips take place in natural landscapes that can be unpredictable. It is essential that you wear, or take with you, appropriate clothing and accessories to cope with heat, cold, wet, wind, biting insects and to walk on uneven, slippery or wet surfaces. Before you join any of our outdoor events it is essential that you read our Guidance.

Some events are run in partnership with other organisations or groups but otherwise our outdoor events are exclusively for Society members. If you are not a member and would like to attend an outdoor meeting then this can be arranged by contacting the Society office in advance and making a donation.