The National Nature Reserve at Greenlee Lough
A birdhide and boardwalk through the reed beds. A National Park guide to the reserve is available from Once Brewed Visitor Centre. Greenlee Lough is used as winter feeding site for several species of wildfowl including the ducks, teal, wigeon and goldeneye and whooper swans. In summer mute swans and mallards breed and if you are lucky you may see an otter and roe deer.
The boardwalk was installed to protect the fragile wet habitats on the edge of the lough. Specialist plants that thrive in wet peaty habitats are found around the boardwalk including sphagnum mosses, cranberry, bog asphodel, marsh cinquefoil, marsh marigold, devils-bit scabious and in the wettest areas common reed. There is access by foot only from Housesteads or Steel Rigg, near the National Park Centre at Once Brewed.
Address: Once Brewed Visitor Centre, Military Road, Bardon Mill, Hexham, NE47 7AN
Telephone: +44 (0)1434 344396
The River Irthing and the Tipalt Burn
Along with many smaller streams – rise in wild moorland, and are frequented by oyster catchers, larks, plovers, curlews, bustards, sparrow hawks and dippers. The Irthing descends to a winding wooded valley on its way westwards after the spectacular Crammel Linn waterfall. The Tipalt is prone to flash floods and flows east from Thirlwall Castle (the woodland here is being made accessible by the National Park authority) and hosts herons and kingfishers, newts and trout.
The Heart of Hadrian's Wall area is one of the last in the country where you can see our native red squirrels. Keep a lookout while you're walking or cycling around the countryside and you might be lucky!