Monday, October 31st, 2016

Mist lingered throughout the day, with a light south westerly breeze. Temperatures remained mild at 13 degrees.

The sea watch produced 488 Common Scoter, 4 Goldeneye, 1 Gossander, 1 Bonnie, 12 Kittiwake and 150 Shag. Coverage on the land was limited with the misty conditions.

16-10-30-reed-bunting-beacon-hill-craig-thomas

Reed Bunting, by Craig Thomas

Sunday, October 30th, 2016

Another day of very light winds and heavily overcast skies. Seawatching highlights included three Eiders flying south, two Sooty Shearwaters north, a Woodcock in off the sea and five Bonxies.

Nine Whooper Swans were present on the sea off South Landing. Single Water Rail and Jack Snipe remained, along with two additional Woodcock and 18 Snipe. Two Short-eared Owls again hunted the lighthouse grasslands, whilst lone Swallow and House Martin, two Lesser Redpoll and 40 Siskin frequented South Landing. The Hume’s Warbler remained in the willows by Roadside Pool, where five Snow Buntings flew over.

West of the Dykes, eight Bean Geese spent most of the day on fields near Buckton, where additional sightings included a Jack Snipe and 26 Lapland Buntings.

Bean Geese, Buckton by Mark Thomas

Bean Geese, Buckton by Mark Thomas

Common Seal, South Landing, by Andy Hood

Common Seal, South Landing, by Andy Hood

Saturday, October 29th, 2016

A calm day, with bright intervals developing after an overcast start. Seawatching highlights included a dark-bellied Brent Goose and a Manx Shearwater flew north, whilst a Whooper Swan, a Long-tailed Duck, four Great Northern Divers, ten Little Gulls, 24 Bonxies and an Arctic Skua headed south.

A total of 212 Pink-footed Geese headed south over the outer head, while there were 56 Teal, a Little Egret, two Water Rails and five Jack Snipe in residence. Two Short-eared Owls hunted the lighthouse grasslands late afternoon. The Hume’s Warbler was seen again at the Roadside Pool along Lighthouse Road; a reminder to all birders to please park at the lighthouse and walk back to view from the roadside only. Two Lapland Buntings were in fields north of Thornwick.

West of the Dykes, 540 Pink-footed Geese flew south at Bempton, as did a Lapland Bunting and two Snow Buntings. Bempton Cliffs RSPB also hosted a Siberian Chiffchaff, while there were two Lapland Buntings at Buckton.

Brambling, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Don Hustings

Brambling, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Don Hustings

Friday, October 28th, 2016

The day started overcast, with light winds, although sunny intervals featured during the afternoon. During the seawatch, two Shoveler, six Pintail, nine Tufted Ducks and a Great Northern Diver flew south.

A total of 225 Pink-footed Geese flew south, whilst two Water Rails, two Jack Snipe and 13 Snipe frequented Thornwick Pools. A Swallow fed over the village and a Woodlark was seen on the outer head. The Hume’s Warbler was glimpsed at Roadside Pool in the morning, but there was no sign of the bird later in the day. The Pallas’s Warbler remained at South Landing, a Waxwing overflew Thornwick Pools, with a Snow Bunting and two Lapland Buntings at Cattlemere.

Jack Snipe, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Hood

Jack Snipe, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Hood

Thursday, October 27th, 2016

It was a day of westerly winds and generally overcast, after a bright start. During the seawatch, two Velvet Scoter, a Goldeneye, four Grey Herons and an Arctic Skua flew north.

A total of 270 Pink-footed Geese flew south, 51 Teal were in residence, whilst a Water Rail, 13 Snipe and two Jack Snipe frequented Thornwick Pools. A Rough-legged Buzzard reportedly flew west from the lighthouse mid-morning. The Hume’s Warbler remained in the willows at Roadside Pool, but proved elusive; should the bird still be present tomorrow, could we kindly request birders park in the lighthouse car-park and walk back to view from the roadside only. Single Pallas’s Warbler and Firecrest remained in South Landing, where four Crossbills flew over the car-park. A Richard’s Pipit also flew west from Old Fall during the morning.

West of the Dykes, seven Goosander flew south-east over Buckton, where there were also 30 Golden Plover.

Snipe, Thornwick Pools, by Don Hustings

Snipe, Thornwick Pools, by Don Hustings

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

A moderate south-westerly established during a largely overcast day. Seawatching highlights included a dark-bellied Brent Goose south, a male Hen Harrier also flying south and two Bonxies.

A Hume’s Warbler was discovered in willows at the ‘roadside pool’ along Lighthouse Road; viewed from the roadside 100m west of Old Fall Steps. Another new arrival was a Little Bunting in the wild bird cover crop south of Whelkie Wynds. Single Pallas’s Warbler and Firecrest were present in South Landing, where a Short-eared Owl was also recorded. Other sightings included 11 Tundra Bean Geese, three Jack Snipe, a Water Rail, one Swallow, a Twite and six Lapland Buntings.

Water Rail, outer head, by Craig Thomas

Water Rail, outer head, by Craig Thomas

Hume's Warbler, Roadside Pool, by Craig Thomas

Hume’s Warbler, Roadside Pool, by Craig Thomas

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016

A sunny day, with very light north-easterly winds. During the seawatch, a dark-bellied Brent Goose flew south, 27 Eiders moved north, a Manx Shearwater, 130 Little Gulls and an Arctic Skua flew south, with two Bonxies heading north.

Away from the sea, 57 Teal were present, along with a Water Rail, two Jack Snipe, two Woodcock and the Kingfisher. However, the main focus of attention related to the presence of two Hume’s Warblers: one bird continued to show well in the willows south of the lower hide at Thornwick, whilst a second individual was located at Bempton Cliffs RSPB. Another Pallas’s Warbler was discovered, on this occasion in South Landing, whilst a Siberian Chiffchaff on St David Lane was also new and a Lesser Whitethroat at Hartendale showed features of blythi. The Dusky Warbler also remained on the outer head for its second day. Locally rarer, a Bearded Tit overflew the Bay Brambles, whilst additional sightings included one Ring Ouzel, two Black Redstart, a Redstart, ten Brambling, a Mealy Redpoll and one Lapland Bunting.

Hume's Warbler, Thornwick Pools, by Alan Walkington

Hume’s Warbler, Thornwick Pools, by Alan Walkington

Monday, October 24th, 2016

Although the winds remained north-easterly, they moderated in strength, whilst light cloud ensured it was a pleasant day to be in the field. Seawatching produced a dark-bellied Brent Goose, 20 Eider, a Red-breasted Merganser, two Sooty Shearwaters, two Manx Shearwaters and 797 Little Gulls flying north; a Sandwich Tern and 24 Bonxies also headed south.

Seven Bean Geese remained on the headland, along with 51 Teal, two Water Rails, a Jack Snipe and a Kingfisher. The star passerine was the Hume’s Warbler that continued to give ‘willow-framed views’ at close range at Thornwick Pools. Other notable sightings included: eight Waxwings (five in off the sea, two at Thornwick and one at South Landing), a Great Grey Shrike at South Landing, a Dusky Warbler, a Pallas’s Warbler at Thornwick, one Firecrest at South Landing, a Woodlark at Thornwick, the Richard’s Pipit still along the cliff top north of Thornwick, no fewer than five Siberian Chiffchaffs, a Black Redstart, two Twite and a Mealy Redpoll.

Hume's Warbler, Thornwick Pools, by Andrew Allport

Hume’s Warbler, Thornwick Pools, by Andrew Allport

Pallas's Warbler, Thornwick, by Andy Malley

Pallas’s Warbler, Thornwick, by Andy Malley

Sunday, October 23rd, 2016

Moderate/strong north-easterly winds gradually moderated during a day that featured extensive sunny intervals. Seawatching highlights included eight Eider, six Sooty Shearwaters, five Little Gulls and three Arctic Skuas north, whilst ten Bonxies and two Pomarine Skuas headed south.

The Hume’s Warbler remained in residence at Thornwick Pools, spending most of the day feeding in the line of willows south of the lower hide. Two Waxwings appeared in the same area in the afternoon, with a Richard’s Pipit showing again in the cliff top grasslands north of the camp. Three Siberian Chiffchaffs included an individual in the main ravine in South Landing, where a (presumed blythi) Siberian Lesser Whitethroat was also located; another Lesser Whitethroat visited gardens in the village.

A Water Rail was on the outer head, while Thornwick Pools attracted two Jack Snipe and a Kingfisher. Merlin, Black Redstart and Whinchat were nearby, while single Redstart and Yellow Wagtail were also relatively late migrants.

Hume's Warbler, Thornwick Pools, by Dave Aitken

Hume’s Warbler, Thornwick Pools, by Dave Aitken

Hume's Warbler, Thornwick Pools, by Lee Johnson

Hume’s Warbler, Thornwick Pools, by Lee Johnson

Hume's Warbler, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Hood

Hume’s Warbler, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Hood

Siberian Chiffchaff, outer head, by Craig Thomas

Siberian Chiffchaff, outer head, by Craig Thomas

Waxwing, Thornwick, by John Harwood

Waxwing, Thornwick, by John Harwood

Black Redstart, Thornwick, by John Harwood

Black Redstart, Thornwick, by John Harwood

Saturday, October 22nd, 2016

The weather consisted of moderate north-easterly winds, sunny intervals and occasional light showers. Seawatching highlights included eight dark-bellied Brent Geese, two Gadwall, five Eider, three Sooty Shearwaters and four Arctic Skuas; in addition, a Short-eared Owl came in off the sea and 70 Little Gulls lingered offshore.

The day’s best sighting related to a Hume’s Warbler discovered late afternoon near Thornwick Pools; it gave sporadic views in the line of willows immediately south of the lower hide. Nearby, a Richard’s Pipit was located in the cliff top grassland north of Thornwick camp. A Dusky Warbler was found along the path between Highcliffe Manor and the cliff top at South Landing, a Siberian Chiffchaff frequented Thornwick, whilst a Waxwing flew west over the outer head.

Other migrants included three Jack Snipe, a Jay, 50 Blackbird, 60 Fieldfare, 760 Redwing, a Ring Ouzel, 52 Robins, one Redstart, a Black Redstart, two Whinchat, four Grey Wagtails, two White Wagtails, 40 Rock Pipits and a Lapland Bunting.

West of the Dykes, a Siberian Chiffchaff was trapped and ringed at Buckton, with three Lapland Buntings at the same site and three Whinchat were at Bempton Cliffs RSPB.

Redwing, Bempton, by Don Hustings

Redwing, Bempton, by Don Hustings

Friday, October 21st, 2016

A day of moderate northerly winds and sunny intervals. Seawatching produced four dark-bellied Brent Geese, 29 Wigeon, three Eider, single Long-tailed Duck, Sooty Shearwater, Balearic Shearwater and Great Crested Grebe, eight Little Gulls, a Pomarine Skua and five Arctic Skuas all flying north.

Six Bean Goose and a Barnacle Goose remained, along with three Jack Snipe, a Whimbrel and two Short-eared Owls. A Shore Lark flew north along the edge of the golf course, two Siberian Chiffchaffs were located, including a bird near Highcliffe Manor, along with a Lesser Whitethroat. Four Waxwing flew in off the sea early afternoon, whilst a Red-breasted Flycatcher was discovered on the outer head. Additional sightings included two Crossbills and three Lapland Buntings.

West of the Dykes, the Siberian Lesser Whitethroat remained at Bempton Cliffs RSPB and a Short-eared Owl was in the same vicinity.

Red-breasted Flycatcher, outer head, by Andrew Allport

Red-breasted Flycatcher, outer head, by Andrew Allport

Siberian Chiffchaff, outer head, by Craig Thomas

Siberian Chiffchaff, outer head, by Craig Thomas

Thursday, October 20th, 2016

Moderate north-westerly winds lasted throughout a largely sunny day. Seawatching was rewarded with two dark-bellied Brent Geese, 30 Wigeon and two Sooty Shearwaters north, whilst ten Bonxies, a Pomarine Skua and two Arctic Skuas flew south.

A Taiga Bean Goose, 12 Tundra Bean Geese and single Pink-footed and Barnacle Geese toured the headland. Two Jack Snipe were again on Thornwick Pools, with a Short-eared Owl nearby at North Landing.

West of the Dykes, the Lesser Whitethroat showing characteristics of the Siberian blythi race showed well at Bempton Cliffs RSPB.

Stonechat, Lighthouse, by June & Malcolm Fox

Stonechat, Lighthouse, by June & Malcolm Fox

Wednesday, October 19th, 2016

A day of strong north-north-west winds and overcast skies. Seawatching highlights included five Barnacle Geese and two Eider north, single Velvet Scoter and Goosander south, three Sooty Shearwaters, three Manx Shearwaters, a Red-necked Grebe north and a first-winter Mediterranean Gull.

The headland’s goose flock contained one Taiga Bean Goose, seven Tundra Bean Geese and a single Barnacle Goose. The Great Grey Shrike again frequented the Gorse Field, whilst additional records included a Water Rail and a Ring Ouzel.

Barnacle Geese, Fog Station, by Craig Thomas

Barnacle Geese, Fog Station, by Craig Thomas

Mediterranean Gull, with Black-headed and Common Gulls, Fog Station, by Craig Thomas

Mediterranean Gull, with Black-headed and Common Gulls, Fog Station, by Craig Thomas

Tuesday, October 18th, 2016

The weather consisted of moderate/strong westerlies with a belt of rain passing through during the middle of the day. Twelve Tundra Bean Geese toured the headland, whilst a juvenile White-fronted Goose spent the day at Oceanview and a lone Barnacle Goose was in residence. In addition, a total of 270 Pink-footed Geese headed south, whilst two Jack Snipe and single Little Grebe and Velvet Scoter were also recorded. A leucistic Black-headed Gull visited Thornwick Pools during the afternoon.

A Short-eared Owl hunted the Lighthouse grasslands and nearby, a Great Grey Shrike was present in the Gorse Field. A single Shore Lark and two Snow Buntings frequented Oceanview.

West of the Dykes, the Shore Lark continued to show well at Bempton Cliffs RSPB.

juvenile White-fronted Goose, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

juvenile White-fronted Goose, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Shore Lark, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Shore Lark, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Siskin, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Don Hustings

Siskin, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Don Hustings

Monday, October 17th, 2016

Moderate south-westerly winds lasted throughout a day of largely sunny skies. Wildfowl included 12 Pink-footed Geese, a Barnacle Goose, a dark-bellied Brent Goose and 32 Teal. Single Little Grebe, Jack Snipe and a Yellow-legged Gull were also recorded. A Long-eared Owl was trapped at North Landing.

A Pallas’s Warbler was trapped at North Landing, whilst a Yellow-browed Warbler remained at South Landing and a lone Firecrest was also located. Two Richard’s Pipits remained along the cliff top near Thornwick and a Little Bunting was still in residence. Additional sightings included 380 Skylarks, two Ring Ouzels, 160 Redwing, seven Wheatear, 230 Robins, two Twite, two Crossbills, two Lapland Buntings and one Corn Bunting.

West of the Dykes, Bempton Cliffs RSPB hosted a Pallas’s Warbler, Yellow-browed Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat and a Shore Lark.

Pallas's Warbler, North Landing, by Andy Malley

Pallas’s Warbler, North Landing, by Andy Malley

Shore Lark, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Alan Walkington

Shore Lark, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Alan Walkington

Sunday, October 16th, 2016

The day featured moderate southerly winds, with a belt of heavy rain during from mid-morning, with sunny intervals later. Seawatching highlights included six dark-bellied Brent Geese, four Gadwall, 78 Wigeon, six Pintail, 88 Teal, seven Tufted Duck, four Eider, three Velvet Scoter, 63 Knot and nine Bonxies all flying south.

Twelve Tundra Bean Geese were present, with seven on Thornwick Pools and five at North Marsh. A Great White Egret flew south over Greenacres mid-afternoon, whilst Water Rail, Jack Snipe and five Woodcock were also logged. A Rough-legged Buzzard overflew South Dykes early morning. Passerine interest included a Pallas’s Warbler new-in at North Landing, a long-staying Dusky Warbler, a Yellow-browed Warbler at South Landing and a Siberian Chiffchaff at Thornwick.  Two Richard’s Pipits were located along the cliff top north of Thornwick, whilst a Lapland Bunting joined a 100-strong flock of Skylarks at South Landing. Additional migrants included two Ring Ouzels, a Black Redstart and a Common Redstart.

West of the Dykes, Bempton Cliffs RSPB hosted single Dusky Warbler, Pallas’s Warbler, Yellow-browed Warbler and Lesser Whitethroat, together with a Shore Lark. Buckton attracted a Woodcock and a Ring Ouzel.

Tundra Bean Geese, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Tundra Bean Geese, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Siberian Chiffchaff, Thornwick, by John Harwood

Siberian Chiffchaff, Thornwick, by John Harwood

Richard's Pipit, Thornwick cliff top, by John Harwood

Richard’s Pipit, Thornwick cliff top, by John Harwood

Saturday, October 15th, 2016

A day of contrasts, with a heavy overcast and periodic rain in light/moderate south-easterlies during the morning, with light southerlies and sunshine in the afternoon. Seawatching produced 12 Barnacle Geese, four Pintail and a Sooty Shearwater all flying north.

A multiple arrival of Radde’s and Dusky Warblers represented the main feature: three Radde’s Warblers were located (Old Fall/Old Fall Hedge/’Motorway’) and four Dusky Warblers (including birds along the ‘Motorway’/North Dykes/Bempton Cliffs RSPB). Three Pallas’s Warblers were spread between Old Fall, North Dykes and Bempton Cliffs RSPB, a Siberian Chiffchaff frequented the Golf Course willows, where there was also a Firecrest. A total of five Yellow-browed Warblers was logged, whilst another Firecrest was at Old Fall. The Olive-backed Pipit again showed sporadically at the southern end of the Lighthouse grasslands. Two Richard’s Pipits were present: North Dykes and Cattlemere. A Great Grey Shrike spent the day around the hedgerows immediately around Old Fall.

In a local context, the day’s rarest sighting related to a Great White Egret that flew south mid-afternoon; only the second local record. Additional migrants included 42 Pink-footed Geese south, a Taiga Bean Goose near North Marsh, five Grey Herons, ten Snipe, five Woodcock, a Shore Lark over North Landing, a Lesser Whitethroat, 4200 Redwing, 500 Fieldfare, 190 Blackbird, four Ring Ouzels, a Redstart, 370 Robins, a Pied Flycatcher and two Mealy Redpoll.

West of the Dykes sightings included a Shore Lark at Bempton Cliffs RSPB, 50 Goldcrests, 15 Chiffchaffs, a Lesser Whitethroat, a Redstart, one Ring Ouzel, three Mealy Redpolls and 14 Brambling. Highlights of a ringing session at Buckton included Water Rail and Mealy Redpoll.

Olive-backed Pipit, Lighthouse Grassland, by Lee Johnson

Olive-backed Pipit, Lighthouse Grassland, by Lee Johnson

Friday, October 14th, 2016

Another day of moderate south-easterlies and overcast skies. Seawatching highlights included the following southbound: 27 Pink-footed Geese, 23 White-fronted Geese, two dark-bellied Bent Geese, one Brent Goose, 65 Wigeon, six Scaup, four Eider, one Sooty Shearwater, two Balearic Shearwaters and one Long-tailed Skua. A Pomarine Skua headed north and a Short-eared Owl came in off.

Geese were clearly on the move, with another 30 White-fronted Geese moving south over the outer head and two White-fronted Geese and four Bean Geese touring the headland. A juvenile Yellow-legged Gull fed in Selwick’s Bay in the evening.

Pride of place was the discovery of a 1st-winter male Pied Wheatear at Cattlemere Hole late morning. After showing well for 30 minutes it flew west and wasn’t relocated. Two Pallas’s Warblers were present, with one remaining in South Landing and the other located in Old Fall. Great Grey Shrike, Firecrest and Hawfinch were also seen at Old Fall, whilst a second Great Grey Shrike was present at South Landing. A Richard’s Pipit and six Shore Larks frequented the Cattlemere area, whilst two Yellow-browed Warblers were at South Landing. A 12-strong flock of Redpolls at Thornwick CP contained both Mealy and Lessers.

West of the Dykes, Buckton recorded 65 White-fronted Geese south, two Woodcock, a Jack Snipe, two Water Rails, single Firecrest, Black Redstart and Ring Ouzel, with 20 Brambling also present. Two Shore Larks also flew over. The Dusky Warbler remained at Bempton Cliffs RSPB, where eight White-fronted Geese flew south, together with 76 Pink-feet; a Firecrest, one Lesser Whitethroat and six Mealy Redpolls were also present on the reserve. Speeton attracted a Ring Ouzel.

Bean and White-fronted Geese, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Bean and White-fronted Geese, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Pied Wheatear, Cattlemere Hole, by Tony Dixon

Pied Wheatear, Cattlemere Hole, by Tony Dixon

Pied Wheatear, Cattlemere Hole, by Colin Scott

Pied Wheatear, Cattlemere Hole, by Colin Scott

Pied Wheatear, Cattlemere Hole, by Colin Scott

Pied Wheatear, Cattlemere Hole, by Colin Scott

Dusky Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Frank Moffatt

Dusky Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Frank Moffatt

Thursday, October 13th, 2016

And so it continues – moderate/strong easterly winds and very heavy showers produced another superb day’s birding. Seawatching was quiet, with 16 Eider and a Red-breasted Merganser north.

New arrivals were headlined by a Red-flanked Bluetail discovered late afternoon at South Dykes; along the track which runs parallel with the cliff top and leads from the western side of South Dykes towards the Golf Clubhouse. The Paddyfield Warbler continued to show sporadically at the southern end of the ‘motorway’ south of the lighthouse. Two Dusky Warblers made landfall: the first at Old Fall and the other at Bempton Cliffs RSPB. The Olive-backed Pipit was seen again in the Lighthouse grasslands, whilst the two Pallas’s Warbler remained – at South Landing and Bempton Cliffs RSPB. A Richard’s Pipit was located along the cliff top at Old Fall, five Shore Larks were on the outer head, whilst two Great Grey Shrikes, six Yellow-browed Warblers and two Firecrests were also recorded, and one Little Bunting was still in residence.

Additional migrants included a Jack Snipe, eight Woodcock, a Short-eared Owl in off the sea, 490 Fieldfare, 3370 Redwing, six Ring Ouzel, 1480 Goldcrests, 32 Chiffchaffs, 32 Brambling and one Lapland Bunting.

West of the Dykes, Bempton Cliffs attracted a Lesser Whitethroat, ten Chiffchaffs and six Mealy Redpolls, whilst Buckton hosted three Jack Snipe, a Yellow-browed Warbler and a Ring Ouzel.

Firecrest, Old Fall, by Colin Scott

Firecrest, Old Fall, by Colin Scott

Dusky Warbler, Old Fall, by Lee Johnson

Dusky Warbler, Old Fall, by Lee Johnson

Paddyfield Warbler, 'The Motorway', by Richard Willison

Paddyfield Warbler, ‘The Motorway’, by Richard Willison

Paddyfield Warbler, 'The Motorway', by Richard Willison

Paddyfield Warbler, ‘The Motorway’, by Richard Willison

Paddyfield Warbler, 'The Motorway', by Lee Johnson

Paddyfield Warbler, ‘The Motorway’, by Lee Johnson

Paddyfield Warbler, 'The Motorway', by Andrew Allport

Paddyfield Warbler, ‘The Motorway’, by Andrew Allport

Pallas's Warbler, South Landing, by Paul Reed

Pallas’s Warbler, South Landing, by Paul Reed

Wednesday, October 12th, 2016

Another day of moderate/strong north-easterly winds, overcast skies and occasional showers. Seawatching produced four Scaup south, two Velvet Scoter, eight Sooty Shearwaters and a juvenile Long-tailed Skua flying north.

The day’s highlight was undoubtedly the evening discovery of a Paddyfield Warbler at the southern end of the ‘motorway hedge’; which runs along the eastern edge of the Gorse Field, south of the Lighthouse. It moved between the edge of the lighthouse grassland and the hawthorn bushes where the hedge ‘dog legs’; best viewed from the grassland field.

Two Great Grey Shrikes were present on the outer head, including one remaining in the vicinity of Old Fall, whilst three Shore Larks were discovered late on with Skylarks south of the Lighthouse. Two Pallas’s Warblers were new in, with one in South Landing and the other at Whelkie Wynds; the latter at one point chased by a Great Grey Shrike! Three Yellow-browed Warblers remained, whilst a Firecrest was located at Thornwick.

Additional migrants included four Woodcock, a Jack Snipe, three Ring Ouzel, 1020 Redwing, 30 Fieldfare, 175 Robins, 470 Goldcrests, a Garden Warbler, 20 Brambling and six Mealy Redpolls.

West of the Dykes, single Pallas’s Warbler, Red-breasted Flycatcher and Mealy Redpoll showed at Bempton Cliffs RSPB and a Ring Ouzel was at Buckton.

Paddyfield Warbler, 'The Motorway', by Andy Malley

Paddyfield Warbler, ‘The Motorway’, by Andy Malley

Paddyfield Warbler, 'The Motorway', by Andy Malley

Paddyfield Warbler, ‘The Motorway’, by Andy Malley

Firecrest, Thornwick, by Andy Malley

Firecrest, Thornwick, by Andy Malley

Great Grey Shrike, Old Fall hedge, by Colin Scott

Great Grey Shrike, Old Fall hedge, by Colin Scott

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Alan Walkington

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Alan Walkington

Mealy Redpoll, North Landing, by Andy Malley

Mealy Redpoll, North Landing, by Andy Malley

Tuesday, October 11th, 2016

A day of strong north-north-east winds, generally overcast skies and occasional rain during the morning. Seawatching highlights included nine Pintail and a Scaup south, nine Sooty Shearwaters north, with a Mediterranean Gull and 17 Bonxies south.

The Olive-backed Pipit remained within the Lighthouse Grasslands. Two Little Buntings were located, including one in the same general area as the pipit. A Pallas’s Warbler that frequented ‘Booted Gully’ east of South Landing was new in, as were two Great Grey Shrikes, a Firecrest and one Hawfinch. The Barred Warbler showed again alongside the road leading to South Landing.

The number of thrushes, Robins and Goldcrests increased compared to recent days. Additional migrants included two Woodcock, a Short-eared Owl, two Yellow-browed Warblers, a Lesser Whitethroat, two Ring Ouzels, five Redstarts, two Mealy Redpolls, 55 Brambling and a Lapland Bunting.

Great Grey Shrike, Old Fall

Great Grey Shrike, Old Fall, by Lee Johnson

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Justin Carr

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Justin Carr

Redstart, Old Fall, by Andy Hood

Redstart, Old Fall, by Andy Hood

Mealy Redpoll, Gorse Field, by Andy Malley

Mealy Redpoll, Gorse Field, by Andy Malley

Little Bunting, Lighthouse Grasslands, by Colin Scott

Little Bunting, Lighthouse Grasslands, by Colin Scott

Monday, October 10th, 2016

Moderate northerly winds gradually dropped in strength during the afternoon, whilst the day consisted of sunny skies and occasional heavy showers. Seawatching produced 13 Red-throated Divers south, two Sooty Shearwaters, 15 Bonxie flying south and two Mediterranean Gulls also south.

Two Little Buntings were present: yesterday’s bird was again alongside the Gorse Field near Head Farm and the other was trapped at South Landing. The Olive-backed Pipit was relocated late evening along the ‘motorway’ path south of the Lighthouse, whilst a Bluethroat was discovered along the cliff top path west of Old Fall. The Barred Warbler remained alongside South Sea Road on the approach to South Landing, whilst 13 Yellow-browed Warblers were scattered across the headland. Additional migrants included a Woodcock, one Garden Warbler, a Willow Warbler, 55 Chiffchaff, 33 Blackcap, 288 Goldcrests,  three Wheatear, a Whinchat, one Redstart, 600 Redwing, 70 Song Thrush, four Fieldfare, 26 Siskin, five Redpoll and seven Brambling.

Barred Warbler, Southsea Road, by Andrew Allport

Barred Warbler, Southsea Road, by Andrew Allport

Olive-backed Pipit, outer head, by Andrew Allport

Olive-backed Pipit, outer head, by Andrew Allport

Little Bunting (trapped), South Landing, by Craig Thomas

Little Bunting (trapped), South Landing, by Craig Thomas

Sunday, October 9th, 2016

Another largely sunny day and moderate northerly winds. Seawatching highlights included ten Pintail and four Eider south, single Velvet Scoter and a female-type Long-tailed Duck north, a Great Northern Diver north, a Balearic Shearwater and Mediterranean Gull south and 12 Bonxies.

A drake Long-tailed Duck was located on the sea south of the fog station, a Little Egret and a Marsh Harrier toured the headland, two Jack Snipe were recorded, whilst a Short-eared Owl overflew the golf course. Thornwick Pools hosted a Kingfisher, with a Great Grey Shrike commuting between there and North Landing. The Dusky Warbler was still present, the Barred Warbler was relocated on the road to South Landing, whilst a Red-breasted Flycatcher was new-in at Old Fall. Two Little Buntings were located: one near Head Farm and the other near North Landing; the fifth and sixth of autumn! Other records included three Woodcock, eleven Yellow-browed Warblers, a Willow Warbler, two Ring Ouzels and two Redstart.

West of the Dykes, a Great Grey Shrike and two Yellow-browed Warblers were located near Bempton village. Bempton Cliffs RSPB hosted the Bluethroat, a Red-breasted Flycatcher and a Yellow-browed Warbler.

Great Grey Shrike, North Landing, by Craig Thomas

Great Grey Shrike, North Landing, by Craig Thomas

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Craig Thomas

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Craig Thomas

Little Bunting, outer head, by Lee Johnson

Little Bunting, outer head, by Lee Johnson

Saturday, October 8th, 2016

The weather consisted of light/moderate northerly winds and after an overcast morning, sunny skies dominated. Seawatching highlight included two dark-bellied and two pale-bellied Brent Geese north, three Barnacle Geese south, two Balearic Shearwaters, 260 Little Gulls, 17 Bonxies south, a juvenile Long-tailed Skua north and a Short-eared Owl south.

An Olive-backed Pipit was located along the permissive path south of the Lighthouse during the evening. Two Little Buntings included an individual along the cliff edge between South Landing and Booted Gully. The Dusky Warbler remained, whilst two Pallas’s Warblers were discovered: one at Thornwick Camp and the other near Highcliffe Manor, South Landing. The Great Grey Shrike again proved elusive in the Thornwick area, whilst 19 Yellow-browed Warblers remained east of the Dykes. Amongst significant numbers of common migrants were 690 Goldcrests.

West of the Dykes, Bempton Cliffs RSPB attracted a Woodcock, one Short-eared Owl that came in off the sea, single Arctic Warbler, Red-breasted Flycatcher, and Bluethroat, two Yellow-browed Warblers, a Spotted Flycatcher and 15 Chiffchaff, whilst another Yellow-browed Warbler appeared near Bempton village. Sightings from Buckton included a Little Owl, three Jack Snipe, three Yellow-browed Warblers, a Firecrest, a Black Redstart, one Redstart and five Lapland Buntings. A Yellow-browed Warbler and 30 Goldcrests were at Speeton church.

Pallas's Warbler, Thornwick Camp, by Lee Johnson

Pallas’s Warbler, Thornwick Camp, by Lee Johnson

Bluethroat, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Tony Dixon

Bluethroat, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Tony Dixon

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Tony Simpson

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Tony Simpson

Friday, October 7th, 2016

Easterly winds reduced in strength during a largely overcast day, with occasional light drizzle. The Taiga Bean Goose remained in residence in the North Marsh area, nine Barnacle Geese flew south, whilst four Brent Geese moved north. A Jack Snipe and a Woodcock were present, with three Snipe, the Common Sandpiper and five Dunlin on Thornwick Pools.

Single Little Bunting and Richard’s Pipit were located on the Lighthouse grasslands during the morning, whilst the Dusky Warbler remained on the outer head. Two Great Grey Shrikes made landfall, with one lingering at Thornwick Pools. Eight Yellow-browed Warblers were east of the Dykes, with additional migrants including 305 Goldcrests, a Lesser Whitethroat, 82 Chiffchaffs, 34 Blackcap, a Willow Warbler, one Tree Pipit, 580 Redwing, 90 Song Thrush, six Ring Ouzels, one Redstart and a Pied Flycatcher.

West of the Dykes, Bempton attracted two Short-eared Owls (in off), a Woodcock, two Yellow-browed Warblers, 15 Chiffchaff, a Redstart and 16 Brambling. Sightings at Buckton included a Short-eared Owl and a Ring Ouzel.

Great Grey Shrike, Thornwick Pools, by Alan Walkington

Great Grey Shrike, Thornwick Pools, by Alan Walkington

Barred Warbler, Flamborough village, by Craig Thomas

Barred Warbler, Flamborough village, by Craig Thomas

Dusky Warbler, Outer Head, by Andy Malley

Dusky Warbler, outer head, by Andy Malley

Yellow-browed Warbler, Flamborough, by Andy Hood

Yellow-browed Warbler, outer head, by Andy Hood

Thursday, October 6th, 2016

The weather consisted of moderate north-easterly winds and generally sunny conditions, although the evening was cloudy. Seawatching highlights included two Pink-footed Geese and 96 Wigeon south, two dark-bellied Brent Geese, four Eider and a Red-breasted Merganser north, a Sooty Shearwater also north, 12 Little Gulls south, four Bonxies and seven Arctic Skuas.

The Eastern Crowned Warbler gave good views throughout the day at Bempton Cliffs RSPB, where an Arctic Warbler proved more elusive. However, the latter showed well at times and was relatively vocal. A Bluethroat was also discovered along the cliff top at the reserve, whilst several Yellow-browed Warblers remained in residence there. A total of 26 Barnacle Geese flew south-east (flocks of 5, 18 and 3 birds), whilst a Jack Snipe and one Short-eared Owl flew in off the sea. Other sightings at Bempton included six Blackcap, 20 Chiffchaff, a Spotted Flycatcher, one Redstart, 20 Robin and five Brambling. A Firecrest was trapped and ringed at Buckton.

East of the Dykes, a Dusky Warbler was discovered late afternoon on the outer head. Twelve Yellow-browed Warblers were also present, together with the Taiga Bean Goose near North Marsh, four Pink-footed Geese, seven Dunlin and a Common Sandpiper at Thornwick Pools. Additional sightings included a Jack Snipe (South Landing), 40 Blackcap, a Lesser Whitethroat, four Ring Ouzel, 146 Redwing, 165 Robins, nine Wheatears and four Redstarts.

Barnacle Geese, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Jo Hood

Barnacle Geese, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Jo Hood

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Craig Thomas

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Craig Thomas

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Alan Walkington

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Alan Walkington

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Tony Dixon

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Tony Dixon

Dusky Warbler, Outer Head, by Andrew Allport

Dusky Warbler, Outer Head, by Andrew Allport

Wednesday, October 5th, 2016

Moderate south-easterlies and sunny skies persisted. The Eastern Crowned Warbler continued to entertain an admiring crowd at Bempton Cliffs RSPB from dawn til dusk. However, come mid-morning, the far-eastern waif was abandoned when news of an immature Black-browed Albatross filtered through from Filey as it past the Brigg and was subsequently tracked south past Bempton and Flamborough Head.

Seawatching from the headland also logged 72 Wigeon and 38 Teal south, ten Eider north (one south), 36 Common Scoter north (11 south), two Red-throated Diver south (one north), two Manx Shearwater and a single Great Crested Grebe north.

Migrants on the Outer Head included a Short-eared Owl in-off, Long-eared Owl, two Ring Ouzel, Lesser Redpoll, five Yellow-browed Warbler, Hawfinch, Redstart, two Wheatear, five Brambling, double figures of Song Thrush and singles of Redwing, Fieldfare and migrant Blackbirds. The Siberian Stonechat and Taiga Bean Goose were still present. In addition, Thornwick held a Snipe and six Dunlin.

West of the Dykes, Bempton Cliffs RSPB also played host to a Greenish Warbler and five Yellow-browed Warbler. Buckton noted six Yellow-browed Warbler (three ringed), a Richard’s Pipit over, Lapland Bunting, Jack Snipe, Ring Ouzel and a control Redstart from Denmark and a Blackbird from Norway.

Black-browed Albatross, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Kevin Groocock

Black-browed Albatross, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Kevin Groocock

Black-browed Albatross, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Dave Aitken

Black-browed Albatross, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Dave Aitken

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Justin Carr

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Justin Carr

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Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Dave Aitken

Tuesday, October 4th, 2016

A day of moderate east-south-easterly winds and sunny skies, after light rain around dawn, ensured today was special. Bempton Cliffs RSPB stole the headlines with the discovery of the UK’s fourth ever Eastern Crowned Warbler near the visitor centre. Found in the middle of the day, the warbler remained stubbornly elusive until late afternoon when it started to give better views.

East of the Dykes, a Siberian Stonechat appeared briefly in the Bay Brambles before disappearing, but was then relocated in the Gorse Field late afternoon. A Radde’s Warbler remained frustratingly elusive near Highcliffe Manor (formerly the Timoneer), South Landing. A Pallas’s Warbler frequented the Golf Course Willows and a Siberian Chiffchaff was discovered at Thornwick.

During the seawatch, a dark-bellied Brent Goose flew north, 53 Wigeon and 40 Teal and a Little Gull headed south, with seven Bonxies and two Arctic Skuas moving north. The Taiga Bean Goose remained at North Marsh. Other migrants included two Short-eared Owls and an influx of thrushes; including 140 Song Thrush, 90 Redwing and seven Ring Ouzels. Other migrants included a Common Whitethroat, four Lesser Whitethroats, a Redstart, two Whinchat, a Pied Flycatcher and a Hawfinch. Yellow-browed Warblers were again ubiquitous, with 42+ present, but attention was focused elsewhere.

In addition to the aforementioned, sightings west of the Dykes included ten Chiffchaffs, single Spotted and Pied Flycatchers at Bempton Cliffs RSPB. Buckton sightings included a Fieldfare, 100 Song Thrush, 50 Redwing, 30 Blackbirds, a Ring Ouzel, 30 Goldcrests, eight Chiffchaffs and 12 Brambling.

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Lee Johnson

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Lee Johnson

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Lee Johnson

Eastern Crowned Warbler, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Lee Johnson

Pallas's Warbler, Golf Course Willows, by Lee Johnson

Pallas’s Warbler, Golf Course Willows, by Lee Johnson

Siberian Stonechat, Bay Brambles, by Lee Johnson

Siberian Stonechat, Bay Brambles, by Lee Johnson

Hawfinch, outer head, by Lee Johnson

Hawfinch, outer head, by Lee Johnson

Monday, October 3rd, 2016

It remained sunny all day, with a very light northerly wind establishing mid-morning. Seawatching highlights included 251 Wigeon north (51 south), a Shoveler, two Pintail, 141 Teal, 225 Common Scoters, two Velvet Scoters and two Red-breasted Mergansers all flying north. Meanwhile, 51 Red-throated Divers headed south, a Great Northern Diver moved north, along with nine Sooty Shearwaters, whilst 201 Little Gulls headed north (29 south), as did single Mediterranean and Yellow-legged Gulls. Three Pomarine Skuas flew south, with 23 Bonxies and three Arctic Skuas also recorded.

The Taiga Bean Goose accompanied eight Pink-feet at North Marsh. A minimum of two Short-eared Owls were present, including a single in off the sea, and the ringtail Hen Harrier hunted the stubbles near South Landing in the morning.

The day’s highlight related to the discovery of a Little Bunting at Whelkie Wynds. A total of 54 Yellow-browed Warblers were discovered, which included seven at Buckton and three at Bempton Cliffs RSPB. The Red-breasted Flycatcher also remained in residence at Old Fall. Additional sightings included a Jack Snipe, nine Snipe over, 20 Redwing, 12 Stonechats, 25 Goldcrests, 15 Chiffchaffs, four Lesser Redpoll, nine Brambling, a Snow Bunting and one Lapland Bunting.

Sightings from Buckton included two Great Spotted Woodpeckers, nine Goldcrest and 30 Corn Buntings.

Hen Harrier, South Landing, by Craig Thomas

Hen Harrier, South Landing, by Craig Thomas

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Old Fall, by Andy Hood

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Old Fall, by Andy Hood

Little Bunting, Whelkie Wynds, by Andrew Allport

Little Bunting, Whelkie Wynds, by Andrew Allport

Sunday, October 2nd, 2016

Strong north-westerly winds moderated slightly during a sunny day. Seawatching produced the following: a Velvet Scoter and 116 Red-throated Divers south, 238 Sooty Shearwaters and 63 Manx Shearwaters north, 49 Bonxies south, 18 Arctic Skuas south, two juvenile Long-tailed Skuas south.

The Taiga Bean Goose accompanied 29 Pink-footed Geese at North Marsh. Single Hen Harrier and Merlin hunted the headland, with three Short-eared Owls also present; two in off the sea and one at North Marsh. However , the day’s highlight was a significant arrival of passerines, including 13 Yellow-browed Warblers, a Barred Warbler immediately south of the lighthouse, a Red-breasted Flycatcher at Old Fall, a Richard’s Pipit over the outer head and a Hawfinch at Old Fall. Additional migrants included eight Redwing, two Lesser Whitethroats, 35 Goldcrests, ten Chiffchaffs, 300 Bramblingtwo Snow Buntings and a Lapland Bunting.

West of the Dykes, sightings at Bempton Cliffs RSPB included a Short-eared Owl and a Snow Bunting, with a Blue Fulmar, Merlin, Jack Snipe, Redstart and seven Redwing recorded at Buckton.

Jack Snipe, Buckton by Mark Thomas

Jack Snipe, Buckton by Mark Thomas

Hen Harrier, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Hen Harrier, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Yellow-browed Warbler, Flamborough village, by Paul Reed

Yellow-browed Warbler, Flamborough village, by Paul Reed

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Old Fall, by Andy Hood

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Old Fall, by Andy Hood

Lapland Bunting, North Marsh, by Andy Hood

Lapland Bunting, North Marsh, by Andy Hood

Saturday, October 1st, 2016

A day of increasing northerly winds and cloud cover after a calm and sunny start to the day. Seawatching was rewarded with: ten Eider south, 44 Common Scoter north, a Red-breasted Merganser south, 38 Red-throated Divers south, 69 Sooty Shearwaters and 11 Manx Shearwaters north, a Balearic Shearwater south, a Little Egret south, 1162 Kittiwakes north, a juvenile Sabine’s Gull and 13 Little Gulls north, a Mediterranean Gull south, a Black Tern north, 19 Arctic Skuas and a juvenile Long-tailed Skua south.

The Taiga Bean Goose accompanied 33 Pink-footed Geese near North Marsh, where a Gadwall was present. Passerine interest included two Yellow-browed Warblers on the outer head (including one in Old Fall), single Whinchat and Yellow Wagtail, Grey Wagtail and White Wagtail.

West of the Dykes, Buckton Pond attracted single Curlew Sandpiper and Jack Snipe.

Taiga Bean Goose with Pink-footed Geese, North Marsh, by Craig Thomas

Taiga Bean Goose with Pink-footed Geese, North Marsh, by Craig Thomas