Tyneside’s Big River

This new web based guide to the  ‘Wildlife along the Tyne’ is currently in development.  It will contain interactive maps, which show over thirty locations. The River Tyne in the North East of England is formed by the confluence of the North and South Tyne to the west of Hexham. It flows for over seventy miles.

The riverside habitats along the Tyne are filled with wildlife all year long”

There are also plans to extend this guide further to include the North and south Tyne over the coming years. Alongside this brand new website there will be opportunities to attend a selection of walks and photography/art sessions. There will also be a regular e-newsletter. We will list the selection of sites that will be featured in this new website over the coming months. Additional locations will also be referenced to external websites.

The combined Tyne flows through Northumberland and Tyneside reaching the depths of the North Sea at Tynemouth and South Shields. This guide will include North Shields Fish Quay; a popular fishing port, which dates back to the 13th Century.  The Fish Quay sits close to the mouth of the Tyne and formed part of the original settlement of North Shields. On the other side of the river in the heart of South Shields, close to the fair rides and regularly packed beaches, wildlife lives in harmony. Snow Buntings come to visit in the autumn/winter; whilst Warblers sing their heart out in the popular coastal parks during the spring and summer months.

Mushrooms by Seani Jade McQuestion

To the west historic towns such as Corbridge and Hexham’s Tyne Country Park will also be included. The delights of popular riverside parks at Hebburn, Newburn and Walker will be showcased; whilst the habitats along the Newcastle and Gateshead Quayside’s will be headlined.

We are hoping this new website will help inspire and encourage others
to help support the restoration of the important habitats along the River Tyne.
Your Support will always be appreciated”.


Once upon a Tyne most of the world ships were built in Tyneside. Fleets of tall ships sailed along the river for trade, whilst fishing vessels gathered at North Shields to help feed the local population. Over the past hundred years the regions fishing fleets have shrunk and most of the heavy industry and ship building yards have vanished. In some cases much of the land has been returned to the natural world.

Dryad’s Saddle Fungus from Wallsend Green

At some locations this has been restored and any industrial legacy removed. This has happened at sites such as the Royal Quays in North Tyneside and Walker Riverside Park in Newcastle. Much more could be done however to remove past industrial contamination and to make habitats which are positioned alongside the route of the River Tyne more friendly to wildlife.

This is especially important at this time as the world is experiencing changes in weather patterns which many say is due to what may be a shift in the worlds climate. Some popular locations are already showing signs of erosion, such as at Newburn Riverside Country Park in Newcastle and Allenbanks deep inside Northumberland.

A Coma Butterfly from the Rising Sun Country Park

At times dramatic and never seen before events are sweeping our planet, which can upset the balance in the local ecosystems. In other cases, restoration is needed due to simple wearing away of the surfaces or the environment itself could benefit from some tender loving care, as we work towards maintaining a healthy balance. Of course not everyone shows empathy and is tuned into the benefits of our green spaces and outdoor habitats.

One further aspect of tynewildlife.org will be to campaign
for the protection and expansion of wildlife along the tyne”.

Wildlife Corridors

As visitors and residents enjoy the delights of this famous riverside habitat they can also enjoy a selection of neighbouring wildlife corridors such as Wallsend Burn/Dene and Parks which flows from the Tyne and reaches far north up into the Rising Sun Country Park. There is also the Ouseburn, which flows through to the beautiful Jesmond Dene which is one of the best well established woodland habitats in the north east. And further north…. onto the legendary and well-loved Gosforth Park Nature Reserve that continues to blossom following the hard work and constant efforts of the Natural History Society of Northumbria and it’s members.

A selection of Waders, you can find along the River Tyne from
the Coast at Tynemouth, North Tyneside
to Hexham in Northumberland.
by EmmaP – Emma’s Artworks



The Fauna, Flora and Geology

Newbiggin-by-the-Sea sits on a headland which juts into the North Sea.  It is well placed for observing seabird and wildfowl passage and it is a superb site for migrant bird passage. Since the late 1980s almost 300 species of birds have been recorded ranking it one of the UK’s top birdwatching sites.


Kittiwakes upon the Tyne

The furthest inland breeding
colony in the world

The Tyne Kittiwakes return every year to build their nests at sites they have specially chosen themselves. They raise new chicks for the next generation of Kittiwakes. Lots of residents and visitors love to hear their “kittee-wa-aaake, kittee-wa-aaake” calls.