Saturday, August 18th, 2018

Another day of moderate south westerly winds and patchy cloud. Counts from the morning sea watch included 14 Common Scoter, 8 Manx Shearwater, 1 Little Egret, 2 Golden Plover, 1 Grey Plover, 4 Whimbrel, 6 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Mediterranean Gull, 129 Sandwich, 18 Common and 1 Arctic Tern, 2 Arctic Skua and 3 Bonxie.

On the land, the juvenile Red-backed Shrike remained. A Green Sandpiper was at Northcliffe Marsh. 3 Tree Pipit, 20 Swift, Merlin, a single Wheatear and a Hobby were between the outer headland and South Landing. Buckton held Marsh Harrier and a Whinchat.

Wheatear by Brett Richards

Friday, August 17th, 2018

A mostly sunny day with moderate to strong south westerly winds. The juvenile Red-backed Shrike continued to perform along the hedge south of Head Farm. Other highlights from the outer headland included a Spotted Flycatcher, 2 Tree Pipit, Little Egret, 67 Willow Warbler, 36 Yellow Wagtail and fly over Green and Wood Sandpipers . South Landing yet again attracted several Mediterranean Gulls with numbers peaking at three during the day, a Greenshank was also on the beach.

The morning sea watch was relatively quiet with 2 Bonxie, 1 Arctic Tern, 16 Common Tern, 70 Sandwich Tern, 10 Manx Shearwater, 4 Whimbrel and a Shoveler.

Birds moving through Bempton included a Marsh Harrier, 4 Whimbrel, Greenshank, 32  Swift and a Wheatear.

In insect news; at least one White-letter Hairstreak remained at South Dykes, whilst odonata counts from the outer head included 1 Small Red-eyed Damsel and good numbers of Emerald Damsel, Ruddy Darter and Migrnat Hawker.

Small Red-eyed Damsel, by Andrew Allport

Thursday, August 16th, 2018

Conditions were overcast during the morning, with brighter skies in the afternoon and a moderate south westerly wind. Highlight of the morning sea watch was a juvenile Black Tern which flew north just after 11am, additional birds included a juvenile Yellow-legged Gull, 27 Common Scoter, 2 Manx Shearwater, 63 Sandwich Tern, 13 Common Tern, 2 Arctic Tern, a single Arctic Skua and a Swift.

On the land, the juvenile Red-backed Shrike remained along the hedge south of Head Farm, with a nearby Whinchat in the Gorse field. Two juvenile Mediterranean Gull were at South Landing, whilst an adult Yellow-legged Gull frequented Stainforth’s Flash. A Little Egret was again on rocks south of the fog station and a Marsh Harrier overflew South Dykes.

Ringed Plover, South Landing by Andy Hood.

Wednesday, August 15th, 2018

A day of moderate south-west winds, sunny intervals and temperatures peaking at 25 degrees C. Seawatch highlights included eight Teal, 16 Manx Shearwaters, 284 Sandwich Terns, 18 Common Terns, three Arctic Terns and an Arctic Skua flying north, with four Whimbrel, 12 Dunlin and 18 Redshank moving south.

A Little Egret fed on the rocky beach near the Lighthouse, single Wood Sandpiper and Green Sandpiper were on Thornwick Pools, ten Dunlin frequented Stainforth’s Flash and a Greenshank also flew south. South Landing attracted an adult Yellow-legged Gull and a juvenile Mediterranean Gull. A juvenile Red-backed Shrike in hedges on the eastern edge of the Gorse Field represented the first scarce drift migrant of the autumn; additional migrants included a Cuckoo and one Wheatear.

West of the Dykes, records from RSPB Bempton Cliffs included a Marsh Harrier and a Whinchat.

Wood & Green Sandpipers, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Cuckoo, Gorse Field, by Alan Walkington

Red-backed Shrike, Gorse Field, by Andy Hood

Tuesday, August 14th, 2018

A day of light south-west/southerly winds, overcast skies with sunny intervals and temperatures reaching 21 degrees C. Seawatching highlights included 22 Common Scoter, two Sooty Shearwaters, 57 Manx Shearwaters, a Grey Plover, a Mediterranean Gull, 144 Sandwich Terns, a Common Tern, nine Arctic Tern, a Bonxie and two Arctic Skuas flying north, with three Whimbrel, a Greenshank, six Common Terns, a Bonxie and two Arctic Skuas heading south. 

Two Little Egrets overflew South Landing, where lone Mediterranean and Yellow-legged Gulls were present, a Greenshank flew south over the headland and a Green Sandpiper dropped onto Thornwick Pools. Migrant passerines included a Tree Pipit that headed south over Old Fall. In addition, the Pied Crow continued to frequent Thornwick camp. 

West of the Dykes, sightings from Buckton included two un-tagged creamcrown Marsh Harriers, 35 Curlew flying north, 27 Common Whitethroats, three Wheatear, two Whinchat, seven Yellow Wagtails and 22 Reed Buntings. 

Cormorant, South Landing, by Andy Hood

Wheatear, Buckton, by Paul Reed

Monday, August 13th, 2018

An overcast day, with light/moderate northerly winds and temperatures reaching 18 degrees C. During the seawatch, a Shelduck, 18 Common Scoter, one Sooty Shearwater, 186 Sandwich Terns, 82 Common Terns, three Arctic Terns flew north, whilst three Wigeon, 32 Manx Shearwaters, four Bonxies and an Arctic Skua headed in the opposite direction. 

Sightings from South Landing included a Little Egret, three Mediterranean Gulls and two Yellow-legged Gulls. A Black-tailed Godwit flew east, lone Sanderling and Green Sandpiper were present, whilst a juvenile Cuckoo frequented the cliff top near Old Fall. The Brown Argus butterfly remained in residence at South Landing.

The wing-tagged Marsh Harrier present at Buckton recently was a juvenile male, ringed as a chick at Burnham Norton, Norfolk on 28th June 2018.

Mediterranean Gull, South Landing, by Andy Hood

Cuckoo, near Old Fall, by Andrew Allport

Migrant Hawker, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Sunday, August 12th, 2018

A relatively overcast day, with a light/moderate south-west wind and periods of light rain. During the seawatch, 47 Common Scoter, a Blue Fulmar, two Golden Plover, 267 Sandwich Terns, two Common Terns, two Arctic Terns, a Bonxie and an Arctic Skua flew north, with 36 Teal, 12 Manx Shearwaters and two Bonxies moving in the opposite direction.

West of the Dykes, a total of 115 House Martins at Buckton included 110 flying south-east; a cream crown Marsh Harrier, 60 Swallows and two Golden Plover were recorded at the same location.

Common Blue, South Landing, by June & Malcolm Fox

Saturday, August 11th, 2018

The weather consisted of moderate westerly winds, generally overcast skies with occasional sunny intervals and temperatures that reached 18 degrees C. During the seawatch, three Manx Shearwaters, a Whimbrel, one Little Gull, 29 Sandwich Terns, a Common Tern and an Arctic Skua flew north, whilst a Grey Heron and a lone Arctic Skua headed in the opposite direction. Thornwick Pools hosted a Grey Heron, two Snipe and a Dunlin, with 12 more Dunlin on Stainforth’s Flash. South Landing attracted four Whimbrel, seven Willow Warblers and a Siskin.

West of the Dykes, sightings included two Sanderling and 33 Sandwich Terns at Sewerby, with a Common Sandpiper on Buckton Pond.

Grey Heron, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Emperor Dragonfly, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Friday, August 10th, 2018

A day of light/moderate south-westerly winds, generally cloudier with occasional sunny intervals. During the seawatch, 49 Common Scoters and a Red-throated Diver flew north, whilst a Sooty Shearwater, 29 Redshank and an immature Long-tailed Skua flew south. However, the stand out was a Fin Whale feeding three miles offshore of the Fog Station from 0720-0732hrs; plenty of fish were clearly present, with a minimum of 25 Common Porpoises and 37 Grey Seals also present. 

Elsewhere, two Shoveler overflew the headland, seven Dunlin frequented Stainforth’s Flash, whilst 23 Willow Warblers and five Yellow Wagtails were scattered across the headland. 

West of the Dykes, 35 Yellow Wagtails frequented fields at Buckton, along with a Wheatear and a Corn Bunting. 

Dunlin, Thornwick Pools, by Alan Walkington

Wheatear, Buckton, by Paul Reed

Grey Seals, Fog Station, by Brett Richards

Thursday, August 9th, 2018

A cooler day than of late, with increasing amounts of cloud interspersed by brighter intervals. Three Teal lingered at Thornwick Pools, where a Grey Heron, one Little Ringed Plover, 11 Dunlin, two Green Sandpiper and a Snipe and two Yellow Wagtails were also recorded. Eleven Willow Warblers included nine at South Landing, whilst a Pied Flycatcher remained in the Golf Course willows. Nearby, three Corn Buntings flew west over the Gorse Field.

Teal, Thornwick Pools, by Craig Thomas

Wednesday, August 8th, 2018

A day of light/moderate south-west winds, occasional sunny intervals during a cloudier day and temperatures peaking at 21 degrees C. Seawatch highlights included three Teal, 68 Common Scoters and two Manx Shearwaters heading north, with 37 Oystercatchers, four Common Terns, an Arctic Tern, an adult Pomarine Skua, one Bonxie and an Arctic Skua flying south.

Thornwick Pools hosted six Dunlin, a Redshank and a Little Ringed Plover. Two creamcrown Marsh Harriers toured the headland, whilst a Hobby hunted South Landing during the morning. Five Crossbills were noted at South Landing.

West of the Dykes, sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs included a Marsh Harrier and eight Willow Warblers, whilst records from Buckton included eight Grey Partridge, a Hobby, two Marsh Harriers, a Bar-tailed Godwit flying east and four Willow Warblers. Two Minke Whales were located on a boat trip four miles off the headland.

Curlew, South Landing, by Alan Walkington

Small Copper, outer head, by Andy Hood

Brimstone butterfly, Flamborough village, by June & Malcolm Fox

Tuesday, August 7th, 2018

A day of light, variable winds, prolonged sunny intervals and temperatures reaching 21 degrees C. Seawatching highlights included 43 Common Scoter, a Tufted Duck and a juvenile Mediterranean Gull flying north, with three Manx Shearwaters and an Arctic Skua moving south. 

Thornwick Pools attracted a Little Egret. Wader interest included 14 Whimbrel, two Bar-tailed Godwits and four Knot south over the headland, 14 Dunlin and a Ringed Plover on Stainforth’s Flash and three Snipe at Thornwick Pools. A juvenile Merlin was seen at North Landing and a juvenile Yellow-legged Gull below Old Fall. Migrant passerines included 20 Willow Warblers, ten Yellow Wagtails and two Pied Flycatchers. Insect interest included the headland’s first Red-eyed Damselflies, a Common Hawker which represented only the second local record, and a Brown Argus butterfly that gave good views at South Landing. 

West of the Dykes, sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs included a Pied Flycatcher and eight Willow Warblers.

Little Egret, Thornwick Pools, by Mike Smith

Willow Warbler, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Small Red-eyed Damselfly, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Common Hawker, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Brown Argus, South Landing, by Andrew Allport

Monday, August 6th, 2018

The weather consisted of very light south-westerly winds, occasional sunny intervals and temperatures reaching 24 degrees C. During the seawatch, a Tufted Duck, 22 Oystercatchers, three Sanderling, 12 Dunlin, 12 Redshank and 28 Common Terns flew south, whilst four Eider, six Manx Shearwaters and 35 Sandwich Terns moved north.

A juvenile Marsh Harrier overflew in the Golf Course early morning, 17 Dunlin frequented Stainforth’s Flash and an additional 21 Thornwick Pools. Migrant passerines included a Pied Flycatcher at Old Fall, a Whinchat near Beacon Hill and 100 Swallows roosting at Thornwick Pools. A minimum of four White-letter Hairstreaks remained at South Dykes, whilst a Brown Argus was also located at South Dykes.

Grey Heron, Thornwick Pools, by Mike Smith

Brown Argus, South Dykes, by Les Day

Sunday, August 5th, 2018

The weather again consisted of light winds, sunny intervals and temperatures reaching 20 degrees C. Seawatch highlights included a Shoveler, 65 Common Scoters, five Manx Shearwaters and an Arctic Tern flew north, with nine Teal, 45 Oystercatchers, a Golden Plover, five Whimbrel, 65 Redshank and 13 Common Terns moved south. 

Two Shoveler were located on North Marsh, Stainforth’s Flash attracted six Dunlin, three Green Sandpipers, two Snipe and a Turnstone, whilst 14 Dunlin and two Green Sandpipers visited Thornwick Pools, where a flock of 11 Black-tailed Godwits flew south in the evening. A Marsh Harrier was seen at North Dykes and a Red Kite headed north-west over Hartendale. Passerine interest included 22 Willow Warblers spread across several sites and a Crossbill over Hartendale.

West of the Dykes, two juvenile Marsh Harriers frequented Buckton, where 56 birds were ringed including 14 Whitethroats, seven Willow Warblers, a Reed Warbler and 17 Swallows. Sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs included a Grasshopper Warbler, two Willow Warblers, a Minke Whale and a Brown Argus.

Turnstone, Stainforth’s Flash, by Andy Hood

Yellow Wagtail, Buckton, by Mark Thomas

Saturday, August 4th, 2018

The weather consisted of light northerly winds and sunny intervals, with temperatures reaching 19 degrees C. During the seawatch, 47 Common Scoter, a Common Buzzard and ten Common Terns flew north, whilst ten Teal, two Red-throated Divers, 61 Oystercatchers, 48 Whimbrel, six Sanderling, 66 Sandwich Terns, a Pomarine Skua and three Arctic Skuas moved south. 

Stainforth’s Flash attracted four Shelduck, two Avocet and 11 Dunlin, Thornwick Pools hosting 18 Dunlin and a Green Sandpiper, whilst a Greenshank overflew South Landing. More noteworthy still, a Honey Buzzard flew west over South Landing late morning, with a Hobby near the same location. Passerine interest included a Crossbill at South Dykes. Insect sightings included a male Banded Demoiselle located near Thornwick Pools’ lower hide, at least two White-letter Hairstreaks at South Dykes and a Hummingbird Hawkmoth in the village.

West of the Dykes, the singing Grasshopper Warbler and a minimum of 80 Yellow Wagtails were seen at RSPB Bempton Cliffs.  Buckton attracted a juvenile Marsh Harrier.

Skylark, Thornwick, by Don Hustings

Linnet, Thornwick Pools, by Mike Smith

Friday, August 3rd, 2018

 Another day of light south-westerly winds, sunny intervals in the morning, with increasing amounts of cloud later, and temperatures again reaching 23 degrees C. Seawatch highlights included 119 Common Scoter, a Bar-tailed Godwit and 52 Sandwich Terns flying north, with nine Manx Shearwaters, three Balearic Shearwaters, a Great Crested Grebe, one Golden Plover, five Whimbrel, 20 Sanderling, 184 Dunlin, 81 Redshank, four Common Terns and an Arctic Skua flying south.

Two Shoveler remained on Stainforth’s Flash, but a Red Kite flew west along the cliff top at North Dykes and a Merlin over the outer head were new. Wader interest included 12 Dunlin at Thornwick Pools, three Dunlin at Stainforth’s Flash and a Green Sandpiper over the outer head. Passerine migrants included four Pied Flycatchers between Thornwick and North Landing, with another two Pied Flycatchers, eight Willow Warblers, two Sedge Warblers, two Lesser Whitethroats and two juvenile Treecreepers in the immediate vicinity of the Bay Brambles. A thorough search of South Dykes revealed the presence of five White-letter Hairstreaks, following the first ever Flamborough record of this butterfly earlier in the week.

West of the Dykes, sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs included a Marsh Harrier, seven Whimbrel flying east, a Grasshopper Warbler, 62 Yellow Wagtails and the reserve’s first record of an Emerald Damselfly.

Willow Warbler, Thornwick, by Alan Walkington

White-letter Hairstreak, South Dykes, by Andrew Allport

White-letter Hairstreak, South Dykes, by Andrew Allport

Thursday, August 2nd, 2018

A day of sunny intervals, light/moderate south-westerly winds and temperatures that peaked at 23 degrees C. Seawatching highlights included 31 Common Scoter, a Manx Shearwater, 60 Sandwich Terns and an Arctic Tern moving north, with 35 Teal, a Golden Plover, two Curlew Sandpipers and a Common Sandpiper flying south. 

Thornwick Pools attracted two Black-tailed Godwits, three Dunlin, a Sanderling and the lingering Wood Sandpiper, whilst Stainforth’s Flash attracted five Shelduck, two Shoveler, three Dunlin, a Golden Plover, six Green Sandpipers and a juvenile Yellow-legged Gull. A Marsh Harrier hunted the outer headland, whilst passerine interest included increased numbers of Willow Warblers and four Pied Flycatchers. The Pied Crow remained on Thornwick camp.

West of the Dykes, sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs included six Willow Warblers, a Grasshopper Warbler, a Pied Flycatcher and 18 Yellow Wagtails.

Pied Flycatcher, Thornwick, by Alan Walkington

Pied Crow, Thornwick camp, by Jo Hood

Small Copper, Thornwick, by Alan Walkington

Hummingbird Hawkmoth, Flamborough village, by Jo Hood

Wednesday, August 1st, 2018

A day of sunny intervals, light/moderate south-westerly winds and temperatures reaching 21 degrees C. During the seawatch, a Manx Shearwater and 27 Sandwich Terns flew north, with six Teal and a Sanderling moving south. 

Thornwick Pools attracted a Grey Heron, four Shelduck, four Teal, the Wood Sandpiper, two Green Sandpipers, a Snipe, one Lapwing and five Yellow Wagtails. Stainforth’s Flash attracted another Green Sandpiper, together with two Yellow-legged Gulls; an adult and a juvenile. However, the most notable sighting related to a Honey Buzzard that flew south over Beacon Hill at 1906hrs. A Short-eared Owl was also seen near the cliff top between North Dykes and Thornwick during the evening.

West of the Dykes, a Grasshopper Warbler remained at RSPB Bempton Cliffs.

Yellowhammer, South Landing, by Don Hustings