Blog - Day: January 29, 2022


Gateshead’s High-rise Kittiwake “Des Res”

The Newcastle upon Tyne and Gateshead Quays underwent a large-scale series of developments in the 1990s, the sheds and warehouses Michael Caine charged around in the 1970’s gangster film Get Carter are long gone, making way for new law courts, hotels and residential developments. On the Gateshead side of the Tyne, key projects included the development of the Sage concert venue and the conversion of the gigantic Baltic Flour Mill into the Baltic Arts Centre…. but what has all of this this to do with cliff dwelling Kittiwakes?

The Black-Legged Kittiwake, Rissa trydactyla traditionally nest on high, steep sided cliffs but, in Newcastle upon Tyne and Gateshead, they have colonised the buildings along the banks of the River Tyne since 1949 (Coulson 1963).

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