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British & IrishBreaksJoin us on a short birding or botanising break to meetsome of our tour leaders, learn about our tours,philosophy and modus operandi, and above all, enjoy agreat few days of good food and good fun in one ofBritain's top wildlife habitats. The Somerset Levelswith Charles MartinA weekend birdwatching break exploring these ancientmoors and wetlands. Our visits are timed to coincide with the massive flocks of wildfowl that gather on the Somerset Levels during the winter,when internationally important numbers of Wigeon, Gadwall, Teal, Pintail and Shoveler are present. Another species found here in vast flocks is the Starling, and a dusk outing to watchhundreds of thousands of birds swirling over their winter roostmakes for breathtaking viewing. Other species we'll search forinclude Bittern, and such wintering raptors as Marsh Harrier and Hen Harrier.Thu 24th - Sat 26th Jan, Fri 1st - Sun 3rd Feb,Thu 14th - Sat 16th Feb & Sat 23rd - Mon 25th FebGBR11Cost: £295South Devon in Winterwith Dave SmallshireA weekend wildlife break in search of the wealth ofwinter wildfowl and waders on the Exe Estuary, includingan 'Avocet cruise' and a visit to the Devon heaths. During midwinter, the food-rich mudflats of the Exe Estuary hostmany thousands of birds, including large flocks of Brent Geese,Wigeon, Little Egrets, Red-breasted Mergansers and gracefulAvocets. Sharing the bounty are Curlew, Oystercatchers, bothBlack-tailed and Bar-tailed Godwits and many other shorebirds,and on this short break we'll visit renowned birdwatching siteshoping to find these as well as Slavonian Grebes, Red-throatedDivers and perhaps marine ducks such as Common and VelvetScoter. We'll also take a 3-hour boat cruise along the river toobserve Avocets. Inland, Hen Harrier, Peregrine and Merlin areamong the raptors we'll look out for, whilst the nearby Devonheaths are home to Dartford Warbler and the occasional winteringGreat Grey Shrike.Fri 22nd - Sun 24th Feb GBR19Cost: £295Winter in the New Forestwith Jon Stokes A weekend to enjoy winter birdlife in the New Forest, aswell as nearby Keyhaven and Pennington Marshes. In the winter, free from tourists, the New Forest reclaims its wildand ancient charm. Resident Dartford Warblers are joined on theheaths by Hen Harriers and the occasional Great Grey Shrike.Hawfinches and Bramblings are among the species we'll belooking for on this short break, as well as Goshawks which begin to display in late February; Merlin, Crossbill, and LesserSpotted Woodpecker are also possible. As well as exploringinland, we'll spend time birdwatching around the marshes and lagoons along the Solent in search of wintering Brent Geese, Little Egrets, Peregrine, grebes, divers, ducks and a variety of waders. Fri 1st - Sun 3rd MarGBR15Cost: £295Suffolk in Early Springwith Cliff WallerA weekend to enjoy the late winter and early springbirds of Walberswick marshes, Minsmere and Benacre. On this weekend break we'll explore Walberswick, Minsmere andperhaps Benacre, looking for such resident coastal species asBittern, Marsh Harrier, Avocet and Bearded Tit, while nearby wehave a chance of seeing such rare and elusive breeding speciesas Woodlark, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Hawfinch and Crossbill.In March the mixture of wintering birds, breeding coastal residents,and rarer heath and woodland species makes a particularlyappealing combination. We even have a chance of a surprise ortwo: perhaps a Great Grey Shrike if the winter weather is hangingon, or an early spring migrant such as Purple Heron, Stone Curlewor Hoopoe if the spring is under way! Fri 8th - Sun 10th Mar GBR14Cost: £295The Wild Flowers & Gardens ofthe Isles of Scilly with Dawn NelsonAn 8-day tour to discover the wild flowers and gardensof the Isles of Scilly. Lying just 28 miles off the Cornish coast are the Isles of Scilly, which,due to their mild climate, are home to many rare and scarce nativeplants, as well as a large number of naturalised exotic species.During our 7-night stay we will visit the botanical 'hotspots' on five ofthe islands, travelling by boat and on foot from our base on theIsland of St. Mary's. On the subtropical island of Tresco, we willspend a full day at the Abbey Gardens enjoying a wide variety ofspecies including Chilean Myrtle, Honey Spurge, Madeira Stork's-bill, Shrub Germander and several of the New Zealand daisy-bushes. We'll also spend time on St. Agnes, St. Mary's, Bryher andSt. Martin's, as well as return to Tresco to seek out some of thespecial native plants, such as the various adder's-tongue ferns,Dwarf Pansy, the Orange Bird's-foot, Western Ramping Fumitory, St.Martin's Buttercup and a good number of clovers. Fri 3rd - Fri 10th May GBR23Cost: £1,150The Great Gardens of Cornwallwith Ted Griffiths A 5-day tour to appreciate the wonderful variety of flora in some of the great gardens of Cornwall.During this holiday, which starts and finishes in Truro, we celebratethe colour and spectacle of Cornwall's ornamental gardens, whichrank among the finest in the British Isles. Many fragile and exoticplants flourish in the benign Cornish climate, including someunique collections of plants which owe their origins to theadventurous travelling plant-hunters of the 19th century. Thu 9th - Mon 13th MayGBR06Cost: £595Norfolk in Springwith Tom McJannet A weekend birdwatching break in East Anglia, one of themost exciting spring birding destinations.We will explore Norfolk's premier reserves, such as Titchwell and Cley, looking for as many of the region's specialities aspossible. We'll search wetland areas for breeding Marsh andMontagu's Harriers, Bitterns and Avocets, as well as migrantwaders such as Spotted Redshank and Little Stint; whilst, in theBrecks, Woodlarks and Nightingales are among the woodlandspecies we'll hope to find. Fri 10th - Sun 12th May GBR03Cost: £295Isles of Scillywith Paul Dukes An 8-day birdwatching holiday to the relaxing andbeautiful Isles of Scilly.The Isles of Scilly contain some of the most dramatic coastal sceneryin Europe and this holiday includes visits to the 'off-islands' of Tresco,St. Agnes and St. Martin's in addition to a thorough exploration of thelargest island, St. Mary's. In spring and summer there are colonies ofseabirds, Grey Seals and a unique flora to satisfy naturalists, whileduring spring and autumn migration the islands are renowned for thediversity and numbers of migrant birds which occur, includingvagrants from Europe, Asia and North America.Sat 11th - Sat 18th May & Sat 21st - Sat 28th Sep GBR02Cost: £1,09516Red SquirrelTiroran House Hotel, Isle of Mull

Wildlife of North & South Uist,Outer Hebrideswith Dave Pierce An 8-day birdwatching tour of the beautiful islands ofNorth and South Uist.North Uist, South Uist and Benbecula comprise the wild andbeautiful southern islands of the Outer Hebrides and on thisholiday we'll explore their fabulous mountain, 'machair' andlakeland habitats. Seabirds and cetaceans should be the highlightof our ferry crossing there from Oban and, from our arrival, we'll bebased for the week on Benbecula, at the heart of the Uists. Thelochs of South Uist support breeding waterfowl, including wildGreylag Geese, plus such waders as Snipe, Redshank, GoldenPlover and occasional Greenshank. Corncrakes call persistentlyday and night from the hay meadows, and by the sea-lochs andinlets we'll look for Otters, and both Grey and Common Seals. TheUists in mid-May are also great for seabirds, and are one of thebest places to observe the passage of our four Skua species -Pomarine, Long-tailed, Arctic and Great. Breeding raptors areanother highlight, amongst them Short-eared Owl, Hen Harrier,Peregrine, Merlin, and both White-tailed and Golden Eagles, andwe might also see all three of our Divers - Black-throated, Red-throated and Great Northern. Standing stones, cairns, and avibrant Gaelic culture provide a rich cultural ingredient to thisspecial destination, while the sighting of a rare Snowy Owl or Red-necked Phalarope may add final icing to the cake!Sat 11th - Sat 18th May GBR21Cost: £895South Devon in Springwith Dave Smallshire A weekend wildlife break in search of the bountifulnatural history in the glorious surroundings of Dartmoorand the south Devon coast. Dartmoor and the varied coastline of South Devon are home to anexceptionally rich variety of wildlife. During this weekend break,we'll explore key sites such as Slapton Ley and the Exe Estuary fora variety of birdlife, including the rare Cirl Bunting, Cetti's Warbler,plus numerous waders and terns. We'll also look out for passingskuas and shearwaters and, if it's sunny, we might be luckyenough to see basking Sand Lizards in the sand dunes or HairyDragonflies on territory. By contrast, Dartmoor brings a taste ofupland Britain with a stunning mix of heather moorland, bogs andancient woodland which hosts such species as Hobby, Snipe,Pied Flycatcher, Grasshopper, Dartford and Wood Warblers,Stonechat and Whinchat. We'll also offer some optional pre-breakfast birdwatching and after-dinner excursions to see Nightjarsand Greater Horseshoe Bats leaving their daytime roost.Fri 17th - Sun 19th MayGBR22Cost: £295The New Forestwith Jon StokesA wildlife weekend in Hampshire.On this short break we will base ourselves in the middle of theNew Forest to sample some of its rich natural history. We'll hope tosee the dusk displays of Nightjars and Woodcock, and makedaytime walks in search of Honey Buzzard and Hobby, plus suchheath and woodland specialities as Woodlark, Redstart, WoodWarbler, Dartford Warbler, Tree Pipit, Hawfinch and Crossbill. TheForest is also home to a rich and unique bog and woodland flora.Fri 17th - Sun 19th May GBR07Cost: £295The Somerset Levels in Springwith Ed Drewitt A 3-day holiday in search of spring birdlife and othernatural history. Spring is an excellent time for birdlife on the Somerset Levels, andthis short break is timed to coincide with the breeding season andpeak migration. May is one of the best times to watch one of thearea's special birds, the Hobby, as well as passage waders suchas Whimbrel and summer-plumaged Black-tailed Godwits.Breeding Bitterns should be making feeding flights across thereedbeds while Marsh Harriers patrol wetland areas regularlylooking for prey. Up to 10 species of warbler are present at thistime of year, filling the air with birdsong.Sun 19th - Tue 21st May & Thu 23rd - Sat 25th May GBR17Cost: £295The Burrenwith Maureen PontingA 4-day botanical tour looking at the unique flora of theBurren in Ireland.The Burren is an area of extensive limestone pavement in CountyClare that supports an outstanding range of plants - SpringGentians, Bloody Cranesbills, Mountain Avens, the white BurnetRose and Potentilla fruticosabeing among the most colourful. We'llwalk over the 'pavement' enjoying its unique flora, and explore therugged coastline with its views of the Aran Islands and of theConnemara Mountains across Galway Bay. The Cliffs of Moher areexcellent for seabirds, including Puffins and Kittiwakes. Tue 21st - Fri 24th May IRL02Cost: £495Wild Flowers of Cornwall'sLizard Peninsulawith Ted Griffiths A 4-day tour to discover the rich flora, and other naturalhistory, of Britain's southernmost point.The Lizard peninsula is one of the top four botanical sites in theUK on account of its southerly aspect and unique geology - aland of extensive grazed maritime heathland and pasture,sheltered sandy coves, impressive cliffs and inland heaths. Duringthis 3-night break we will enjoy leisurely walks along both coastaland inland footpaths in search of botanical treasures that rangefrom the diminutive clovers to the stately Tree-mallows. We willsearch the tideline for maritime species at Gunwalloe ChurchCove, take a walk south from Cadgwith, visit the inland heath onGoonhilly Down, and walk the coastal path from Kynance Cove tothe botanically-rich Gew Graze Valley where curious outcrops ofmineral-rich rock known as serpentine harbour many of the moreunusual plants. The flowers should be at their best in early June,but we will not ignore other wildlife and will particularly search forthe Choughs now breeding again on Lizard Point, and look fromthe headlands for Basking Sharks and Grey Seals.Fri31st May - Mon 3rd Jun GBR30Cost: £395Lyme Bay - Dolphin &Seabird Cruiseswith James PhillipsDolphin and seabird cruises in Lyme Bay, Dorset.During our full-day cruises from West Bay we look for White-beaked Dolphins, other cetaceans and seabirds. On our eveningcruises from Weymouth we search for rare Balearic Shearwatersand other seabirds off Portland Bill. These are data-collectingresearch cruises run in conjunction with the charity Marinelife.June - AugustContact the Naturetrek office for further information on 01962 733051 or email from £50Orkneywith David McAllister A 6-day tour to enjoy the history and natural history ofthe Orkney Islands.As well as taking time to enjoy some of Orkney's famous Neolithicantiquities such as Skara Brae and Maeshowe, we will be focusingon its wildlife from our base in Kirkwall on 'Mainland' (the largestisland). The islands' special seabirds include Fulmar, Shag, Greatand Arctic Skuas, Arctic Tern, Razorbill, Black Guillemot, Gannet,Kittiwake and Puffin. We will also be hoping to see raptors such asHen Harrier, Peregrine, Merlin and Short-eared Owl. We'll enjoy thedrumming of Snipe, and northern specialities such as Rock Dove,Twite and Raven. Other highlights may include Grey and CommonSeals, the endemic Orkney Vole and its endemic primrose.Sun 2nd - Fri 7th Jun GBR25Cost: £695Northumberland & the Farne Islandswith Mike HodgsonA 6-day exploration of Northumberland's spectacular coast, offshore islands and Cheviot Hills. On this holiday we explore Northumberland's superb coastline anda range of upland habitats. We will visit Lindisfarne, sail aroundCoquet Island (where over 70 pairs of Roseate Terns andthousands of Puffins nest), then finally visit the Farne Islands. Thetwin islands of Staple and Inner Farne provide one of the greatestseabird spectacles in Britain, with colonies of Arctic and SandwichTerns, Guillemots, Shags, Kittiwakes and Puffins. Elsewhere alongthe Northumberland coast we visit a colony of Little Terns andcheck for late migrant passerines and waders at various locationsbefore making an exploration of the dramatic fells and valleys ofthe Cheviot Hills, home to a variety of upland birds including RedGrouse, Dipper, Grey Wagtail and Raven.Thu 6th - Tue 11th JunGBR13Cost: £795AvocetsBurnt-tip OrchidsPuffins, Skomer17