Kittiwakes upon the Tyne

Showcasing the progress of the Kittiwakes along the River Tyne

Home Tyne Kittiwake Diary Update 12th May 2019

Update 12th May 2019

Tyne Kittiwakes busy
building their nests

Phoenix House

The new anti-bird deterrent ‘fire-gel’ has not stopped birds nesting on the top of ‘Phoenix House’.  Almost a dozen pairs have settled in, building their nests adjacent to the gel. As birds land they are clearly upset by its presence but their instinct to nest is stronger.

The pair that  was found to be building their nest precariously on one of the vintage arches, have put a lot of effort into constructing their new nest.

It is a canny size now and looks a bit more secure compared to last weekend.  It is amazing how Kittiwakes can nest on tiny ledges and so high up.

Ten-out-of ten for effort; hopefully this pair will be ok this year.  There is a risk young birds, could fall through some of the remaining netting on ‘Phoenix House’.

Independent birdwatchers and local wildlife organisations are monitoring the Kittiwakes again this year.

Vermont Hotel

No changes appear to have been made to this hotel this season, in relation to anti-bird deterrents. We hope no birds are again trapped or become injured in their anti-bird netting. A dead bird remains on their quayside hotel still from last year.

Up to five pairs are showing signs of nesting on the front of the hotel, on anti-bird netting.

Should anyone find a trapped or injured Kittiwake this season, please contact the RSPCA’s 24-hour cruelty and advice helpline on
0300 1234 999.

To help officers locate birds in trouble explaining where they can be viewed from is very useful.

Premier Inn

No birds nest on the Premier Inn, and the new ‘avishock’ system is proving to deter birds from nesting on this building.  Dozens of birds continue to relax on the uppers areas however.  Any Kittiwakes that land on the areas where ‘avi-shock’ is installed are clearly uncomfortable and fly off some distance afterwards; often shaken their heads a few times.

Lombard House

Kittiwakes have chosen ‘Lombard House’ to nest this year.  Clustered on the left hand side, they have built their nests on the upper areas of the roof. Not sure if the owners will welcome their choice.  Lots of Kittiwakes were displaced from the Guildhall; and it was expected, that these birds may instead have chosen other buildings along Newcastle Quayside as an alternative to build their nests.

Tyne Bridge and the Baltic

Hundreds of Kittiwakes have settled in and are busy nesting.  Numbers have increased since last weekend.


The new ‘avishock’ system continues to deter birds from nesting where they successfully fledged young Kittiwakes last year.  Half a dozen Kittiwakes were resting on the ‘Clock Tower’  today and there are signs, that some pairs will nest there this year.


Elsewhere on the Guildhall, apart from a couple of Kittiwakes on the roof tiles; with a second pair cuddled up to each other lower down; Kittiwakes appear to be less keen to spend time there.

Railway Bridge

Away from the hustle and bustle of the busy Quayside, over two dozen Kittiwakes continue to nest on the ‘Railway Bridge’.

Street Lights

A few pairs continue to nest on the street lighting.

Kittiwake Tower

This remains a popular choice for the Kittiwakes, but there is still a lot of capacity, so it is not always a Kittiwakes first choice to nest.

More information will appear in this dairy over the coming weeks for the Kittiwake Tower and Kittiwakes that have chosen to nest in North and South Tyneside.