Barn Owl surprise at Lindisfarne Castle

A plastic owl was on the list of things to look out for on the Lindisfarne Castle halloween Trail, but visitors got a little more than they bargained for when they came face to face with the real thing.

Lindisfarne Castle perches dramatically on a rocky crag of Lindisfarne Island off the Northumberland coast. Accessible only at low tide via a three-mile causeway the island castle presents an exciting and alluring aspect.

Barn Owl at Lindisfarne Castle

Barn Owl at Lindisfarne Castle

Originally a Tudor fort, it was converted into a private house in 1903 by the young Edwin Lutyens. The small rooms are full of intimate decoration and design, with windows looking down upon the charming walled garden planned by Gertrude Jekyll.

The family had reached the west bedroom whose small windows look out high over Lindisfarne, but peering back from the outside window ledge were a pair of large dark eyes framed by the unmistakable white face of a barn owl.

On finishing the trail they presented a snap of a real owl to House Steward, Nick Lewis, who said;

“I was shocked to see the picture. I thought the family were joking at first but it was great to see the bird perching on the ledge. I have been keeping an eye out for owls since we installed an owl box on the back of the ticket hut.

Two years ago a pair were roosting on the ledge outside the Ship Room and below the West Bedroom but there has been no sighting since. These photos show the West Bedroom windows so it is encouraging that they may have returned to roost and perhaps nest.”

Lindisfarne Castle – National Trust website with more information and details of opening times.

Barn owl Trust – Conserving the Barn owl and it’s environment.  View the barn owl webcams.

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