Sunday, June 30th, 2019

The weather consisted of sunny intervals, moderate westerly winds and temperatures that peaked at 22 degrees C. A total of 114 Common Scoters was recorded on the seawatch, along with a Bonxie flying north and 94 Swifts heading south over the sea. Elsewhere, a Hobby flew west over the southern edge of the village. Surprising passerine interest included a female Redstart in gardens on the outer head and a Spotted Flycatcher at Bempton RSPB; a Little Egret also flew over the reserve.

Meadow Pipit, Thornwick, by Don Hustings

Chaffinch, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Common Seal, Fog Station, by Brett Richards

Saturday, June 29th, 2019

Fog early on precluded observations, although sunny conditions prevailed from mid-morning in a moderate south-easterly breeze. During a seawatch, sightings included 29 Common Scoters and two Manx Shearwaters flying north; 128 Swifts off the outer head were presumably part of a southerly movement witnessed at other coastal locations. A Marsh Harrier hunted fields between South Landing and Old Fall.

Redshank, Thornwick Pools, by Alan Walkington

Friday, June 28th, 2019

An overcast day, with light easterly winds and temperatures reaching 15 degrees C. During the seawatch, 60 Common Scoter, five Manx Shearwaters, two Curlew and two Sandwich Terns flew north. Thornwick Pools attracted three Little Ringed Plovers and a Green Sandpiper, whilst a Hobby hunting there early morning was later seen at various places across the headland. Setaside near Thornwick attracted 70 Linnets and two Corn Buntings.

Green Sandpiper, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Tawny Owl, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Coal Tit, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Thursday, June 27th, 2019

The weather consisted of light north-westerly winds, largely sunny skies after a cloudier start and temperatures that reached 17 degrees C. During the seawatch, 89 Manx Shearwaters, two summer-plumaged adult Mediterranean Gulls, three Common Terns, an Arctic Tern and a Bonxie flew north. Thornwick Pools attracted a Teal, one Grey Heron, two Little Ringed Plovers and a Green Sandpiper.

Green Sandpiper, Thornwick Pools, by Rob Little

Grey Heron, Thornwick Pools, by Mike Smith

Marsh Pug, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Wednesday, June 26th, 2019

Another overcast day until late evening, when sunny spells developed; moderate/strong northerly winds were a feature of the first half, whilst the temperature reached 14 degrees C. Seawatch highlights included 93 Common Scoters, 275 Manx Shearwaters, seven Curlew, 21 Sandwich Terns, three Bonxies and an Arctic Skua flying north; an additional 200 Common Scoter sheltered off South Landing. The year’s first Puffling was seen on the sea off the Fog Station. Thornwick Pools attracted two Little Ringed Plovers and a Ringed Plover. Passerine interest was provided by a Cuckoo that frequented Buckton Pond.

Ringed & Little Ringed Plovers, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Malley

Ringed Plover, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Tuesday, June 25th, 2019

Thick fog persisted until late afternoon, whilst there were periods of drizzle in a strong north-north-westerly wind. During an evening seawatch, eight Common Scoters and 21 Curlew flew south, with two Manx Shearwaters heading north. Thornwick Pools attracted two Little Ringed Plovers and five Black-tailed Godwits.

Common Whitethroat, RSPB Bempton Cliffs, by Alan Walkington

Black-tailed Godwits, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Monday, June 24th, 2019

An overcast and slightly misty day with a light northerly breeze.  We are now into what is normally considered traditional midsummer and a lull in new birds is often anticipated.  Not on this day though.  

Seawatching highlights at the Fog Station included 267 northbound Common Scoter with 15 Manx Shearwaters north and 42 south while Bempton Cliffs saw 111 Common Scoter flying SE and also what was without doubt the star bird of the day, an adult Sooty Tern.  It passed  by the cliffs twice within a few minutes at midday before heading north west and was later seen off Filey Brigg still heading north.  This constitutes the first record for the FBO recording area and it can be speculated that this is the same returning bird as seen in Northumberland and Aberdeenshire in July and August last year.  A Hobby also flew NW over the cliffs.

On the Outer Head, birding quality in the form of a male Subalpine Warbler was initially heard singing opposite the Golf Course Willows before showing intermittently – the second Subalpine in this location, found by the same person this June. A very smart bird for those lucky enough to see it well. 

Elsewhere, Thornwick Pools attracted 3 Little Ringed Plovers and a Dunlin while the number of Teal increased to 5.

Adult Sooty Tern, Bempton Cliffs (Will Scott)

Sooty Tern, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Will Scott

Sunday, June 23rd, 2019

An overcast day, with a light/moderate easterly wind and temperatures that reached 16 degrees C. During the seawatch, 279 Common Scoters, a Red-throated Diver, 39 Manx Shearwaters and 11 Black-tailed Godwits flew south. Thornwick Pools hosted single Teal and Tufted Duck, two Little Ringed Plovers, two Avocets, a Black-tailed Godwit and a Redshank. In addition, a Cuckoo flew over nearby fields.

The two Avocets had earlier flown south over RSPB Bempton Cliffs, where a Hobby and a Reed Warbler were present.

Barn Owl, RSPB Bempton Cliffs, by Alan Walkington

Black-tailed Godwit, Thornwick Pools, by Steve Meredith

South Landing, by June & Malcolm Fox

Saturday, June 22nd, 2019

Initially a calm day, with increasing amounts of cloud and a south-easterly breeze developing. During the seawatch, ten Common Scoters and 20 Manx Shearwaters flew south, whilst 19 Sandwich Terns headed north. Away from the sea, a Little Egret flew north along the Dykes, a Hobby flew west with prey near the Lighthouse and a Green Sandpiper headed south over the outer head. A Short-eared Owl hunted the Gorse Field, whilst the year’s second Ring-necked Parakeet appeared along Lighthouse Road before flying north. Odonata interest was headlined by a male Vagrant Emperor on the outer head.

Little Ringed Plovers, Thornwick Pools, by Andrew Allport

Vagrant Emperor, outer head, by Andrew Allport

Friday, June 21st, 2019

A day of sunny intervals and light westerly winds. The day’s highlight related to a Spoonbill that flew north-west over RSPB Bempton Cliffs at 1036hrs. A total of 469 Swifts were logged from the same site, including 302 heading south-east. Thornwick Pools hosted single Teal, Tufted Duck and Little Ringed Plover, together with a juvenile Black-headed Gull.

juvenile Black-headed Gull, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Broad-bodied Chaser, Flamborough, by Rob Little

Roe Deer with fawn, Flamborough village, by Rob Little

Thursday, June 20th, 2019

The day’s weather consisted of moderate south-westerly winds and largely sunny skies, with temperatures reaching 18 degrees C. During the seawatch, 26 Common Scoters and 19 Manx Shearwaters flew north, with a Red-throated Diver and three Sandwich Terns heading south. Two Hobbies flew south-east over RSPB Bempton Cliffs and were accompanied by 205 Swifts. 

Great Spotted Woodpecker, Flamborough village, by Craig Thomas

Wednesday, June 19th, 2019

A relatively still day, with overcast skies and light rain during the morning, with brighter spells later and temperatures reaching 14 degrees C. During the seawatch, an Eider and 57 Common Scoters flew north, with five Curlew, 17 Sandwich Terns, an Arctic Tern and a Bonxie heading south. Thornwick Pools attracted a drake Teal and a Little Ringed Plover, whilst the Short-eared Owl continued to hunt fields on the northern edge of the golf course. The day’s main feature related to a southerly movement of Swifts witnessed at RSPB Bempton Cliffs: a total of 1004 flew south between 1030-1600hrs.

Razorbill, North Landing, by John Beaumont

June & Malcolm Fox, South Landing

Tuesday, June 18th, 2019

The weather consisted light southerly winds, occasional sunny intervals, with overcast conditions later and temperatures that reached 19 degrees C. The seawatch was relatively quiet, with 23 Common Scoter flying north and three Grey Herons heading south. A pair of Grey Patridge frequented the setaside fields near Holmes Gut, the majority of a total of 312 Swifts involved birds heading south and a Grey Wagtail overflew the Lighthouse.  Sightings from Buckton included a pair of Tufted Duck and an additional 50 Swifts. 

Of a total of ten species recorded, odonata interest included a male Vagrant Emperor, four Hairy Dragonflies and six Red-veined Darters.

Tufted Duck, Buckton Pond, by Paul Reed

Grey Heron, Fog Station, by Brett Richards

Vagrant Emperor, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Red-veined Darter, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Hairy Dragonfly, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Large Skipper, Buckton, by Paul Reed

Monday, June 17th, 2019

An overcast day, with light/moderate south-south-westerly winds and temperatures reaching 17 degrees C. Seawatch highlights included a June record count of 13 Gadwall, four Eider, a Manx Shearwater, nine Curlew, a Bar-tailed Godwit, eight Lesser Black-backed Gulls and three Sandwich Terns all flying south.

A Short-eared Owl hunted the immediate environs of North Marsh, whilst a Lesser Redpoll around the Fog Station was also unseasonal.

Guillemot adult with chick, Fog Station, by Brett Richards

Dunlin, Thornwick Pools, by June & Malcom Fox

Yellow Shell Moth, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Sunday, June 16th, 2019

The weather consisted of light/moderate south-south-westerly winds, sunny intervals with the odd shower and temperatures that reached 18 degrees C. During the seawatch, two Canada Geese flew south, whilst five Sandwich Terns headed north and four south. Thornwick Pools attracted a pair of Tufted Duck and a Dunlin. Overnight a ringing session in Thornwick Bay proved productive with a Storm Petrel trapped: it already sported a ring.

A Cuckoo frequented the outer head and a Grasshopper Warbler was singing near Sixpenny Plantation. A record number of Reed Warblers continue to hold territory: 12 singing males included three at Thornwick Pools, three at Thornwick Fishing Lake, two at Thornwick roost reedbed, two at Thornwick reedbed and two at Greenacres. In addition, a migrant Reed Warbler was singing in the Golf Course Willows.

The following film of Razorbills at RSPB Bempton Cliffs was taken by David Hutchinson:

Saturday, June 15th, 2019

After an overcast start, sunny intervals lasted throughout most of the day, before heavy showers later; moderate south-south-easterly winds and temperature that reached 15 degrees C. During the morning’s seawatch, 42 Common Scoter, a Manx Shearwater and seven Sandwich Terns flew north, whilst a Bonxie remained offshore.

The day’s highlight related to the appearance of an Alpine Swift that appeared over the cliffs near North Dykes and flew directly towards Thornwick at 2010hrs; an additional 120 Swifts also flew south-east at the same time. Two Siskins visited garden feeders.

Tawny Owls, Flamborough, by Alan Walkington

Friday, June 14th, 2019

The day started with overcast skies and rain, with brighter intervals later and a light/moderate southerly wind. Seawatching was quiet, although a Bonxie lingered offshore, whilst a drake Eider frequented South Landing. Thornwick Pools attracted two male Teal, two Dunlin and two Little Ringed Plovers.

Eider, South Landing, by Alan Walkington

Thursday, June 13th, 2019

Another overcast day, with periodic drizzle, light south-south-east winds and temperatures that reached 12 degrees C. During the morning’s seawatch, 16 Manx Shearwaters and a Sandwich Tern flew north. Thornwick Pools hosted a Teal, three Dunlin and a Redshank.

Linnet, South Landing, by June & Malcolm Fox

Diamond-back Moth, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Wednesday, June 12th, 2019

It was an overcast day following overnight heavy rain, with a light northerly wind and temperatures that reached a mere 12 degrees C. Sightings during an afternoon seawatch included seven Eider, a Red-throated Diver, 12 Manx Shearwaters, six Sandwich Terns, an Arctic Tern and a Bonxie all flying north. The day’s highlight pertained to a Golden Oriole seen in flight at midday in South Landing and heard calling there ten minutes later.

Yellowhammer, South Landing, by Brett Richards

Tuesday, June 11th, 2019

Strong northerly winds throughout an overcast day, with prolonged rain, often heavy at times, and temperatures that reached a mere 11 degrees C. During the seawatch, 28 Common Scoter, 446 Fulmars, a Blue Fulmar, five Manx Shearwaters, an Arctic Tern and three Bonxies flew north, with another Bonxie remaining offshore. Thornwick Pools attracted two Little Ringed Plovers, three Dunlin and two Redshank.

Gannet, RSPB Bempton Cliffs, by Alan Walkington

Ghost Moth, South Landing, by Andrew Allport

Monday, June 10th, 2019

A generally overcast day, with light/moderate northerly winds and subdued temperatures that reached 13 degrees C. During the morning seawatch, 35 Manx Shearwaters, four Sandwich Terns and two Arctic Terns flew north. Thornwick Pools attracted four Tufted Ducks, two Little Ringed Plovers and two Dunlin.

The highlight was provided by a singing Golden Oriole early morning: vocal between 0640-0700hrs only, it sang in a small woodland on the south side of the headland. In addition, the female Subalpine Warbler remained in the Golf Course Willows, albeit it proved more elusive than previous days.

Tawny Owl, Flamborough, by Alan Walkington

Stock Dove, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Sunday, June 9th, 2019

A day of sunny intervals, occasional light showers early evening and a light/moderate south-westerly wind. During the seawatch, 128 Manx Shearwaters, two Grey Herons, 16 Knot, 16 Sandwich Terns, two Common Terns and two Bonxies flew north. However, the seawatch highlight was the summer-plumaged Black Guillemot that flew north out of Bridlington bay, before landing on the sea off the Fog Station and then drifting north.

Whilst the sea had a northern flavour, birding on the land was distinctly Mediterranean in nature: an Alpine Swift circled low over the Viking Pub for a few minutes early afternoon, before heading off north. The female Subalpine Warbler and male Black-headed Bunting also remained in residence at the Golf Course Willows and Old Fall Steps respectively. Further sightings included Marsh Harrier, Hobby and a Grey Wagtail.

Subalpine Warbler, Golf Course Willows, by Andy Hood

Subalpine Warbler, Golf Course Willows, by Tony Dixon

Orange Tip, South Landing, by June & Malcolm Fox

Saturday, June 8th, 2019

Light winds gradually increased in strength, with a switch from south-west to north-westerlies; cloud also increased after a morning of prolonged sunny intervals, whilst heavy rain showers featured from mid-afternoon. Seawatching was rewarded with two Teal, two Shelduck, 274 Common Scoters, one Red-throated Diver, 75 Manx Shearwaters, a Curlew and 11 Sandwich Terns flying south. 

A female Subalpine Warbler was the most significant new arrival; it remained elusive in the Golf Course Willows, but showed on and off until late afternoon at least. The male Black-headed Bunting also continued to show well at times throughout the day until the evening. Single creamcrown Marsh Harrier and Hobby were recorded, with additional passerine migrants restricted to lone Spotted Flycatcher and Siskin. Sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs included a Garden Warbler, whilst Buckton Pond attracted a Cuckoo and four Yellow Wagtails.

A significant influx of Painted Lady butterflies also occurred, with 130 logged over a fraction of the headland: many 100s were undoubtedly present, including several watched coming in off the sea.

Black-headed Bunting, Old Fall Steps, by Andy Hood

Subalpine Warbler, Golf Course Willows, by Craig Thomas

Friday, June 7th, 2019

After a relatively bright start to the day, increasing cloud developed and rain arrived late afternoon; easterly winds picked up throughout and temperatures reached 15 degrees C. The day’s avian highlight was undoubtedly the discovery of a male Black-headed Bunting on Old Fall Hedge early afternoon; it showed sporadically in the same vicinity, near ‘Old Fall Steps’, until the bad weather arrived.

Additional sightings included ten Common Scoter flying south, with 15 Manx Shearwaters, 19 Sandwich Terns and 788 Puffins heading north; a Bonxie remained offshore. Ten Grey Herons were also noted flying over the headland, whilst a Cuckoo was calling on the southern side. Odonata interest was headlined by the discovery of a Hairy Dragonfly; the first record for the headland.

Black-headed Bunting, Old Fall Hedge, by Andrew Allport

Black-headed Bunting, Old Fall Hedge, by Andrew Allport

Black-headed Bunting, Old Fall Hedge, by Brett Richards

Black-headed Bunting, Old Fall Hedge, by Tony Dixon

Hairy Dragonfly, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Poplar Hawk Moth, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Thursday, June 6th, 2019

The weather consisted of sunny intervals, and light, rather variable winds. During the seawatch, eight Common Scoters and 465 Puffins flew north, with seven Sandwich Terns heading south: 50 Manx Shearwaters lingered offshore. Thornwick Pools attracted a single Black-tailed Godwit. Late news, a Nightjar churred at South Landing at 2130hrs and again at 2140hrs. Sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs RSPB included 40 Manx Shearwaters offshore, 127 Swifts flew south and four Coal Tits represented an unusual local record. 

Black-tailed Godwit, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Wednesday, June 5th, 2019

The weather consisted of light/moderate south-westerly winds, generally overcast skies with brighter intervals later. During the seawatch, 58 Common Scoter and 123 Manx Shearwaters flew south, with a Red-throated Diver, six Sandwich Terns and a Common Tern flying north. Despite rain the previous evening, newly arrived passerine migrants were scarce: although a singing Reed Warbler in the Golf Course Willows and three Spotted Flycatchers were fresh in. 

Bar-tailed Godwit, South Landing, by Alan Walkington

Tuesday, June 4th, 2019

A day of light south-easterly winds, with rain from late afternoon. Seven Shelduck were recorded, including five at Thornwick; three that flew south, with a pair on the Pools, where there were also two Little Ringed Plovers and two Dunlin. A Woodcock flushed at South Dykes was unseasonal. Three Mistle Thrushes were located, along with two Garden Warblers, a Spotted Flycatcher, two Yellow Wagtails and a Siskin.

Corn Buntings, Flamborough, by Craig Thomas

Large Skipper, Thornwick, by Andrew Allport

Holly Blue, Thornwick, by Andrew Allport

Common Blue Damselfly, Thornton, by Andrew Allport

Azure Damselfly, Buckton, by Phil Buxton

Monday, June 3rd, 2019

A day of moderate south-westerly winds, sunny intervals and temperatures reaching 17 degrees C. During the seawatch, 15 Common Scoters, a Blue Fulmar, four Manx Shearwaters and nine Sandwich Terns flew north, with seven Canada Geese heading south.

Three Little Egrets flew south over South Landing, whilst migrant waders included three Dunlin, a Ringed Plover, two Little Ringed Plovers and a Bar-tailed Godwit. The elusive Bee-eater made a brief re-appearance at RSPB Bempton Cliffs once again; observed over the Dell and then flying towards the cliffs. A singing Reed Warbler along Stonepit Lane, Bempton was an undoubted migrant; additional passerine interest included two Garden Warblers (South Dykes & South Landing), three Nuthatch in South Dykes and three Corn Buntings at Thornwick.

Tawny Owl, Flamborough, by Alan Walkington

Moorhen, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Little Ringed & Ringed Plover, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Dunlin, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Wall butterfly, Flamborough, by Steve Meredith

Sunday, June 2nd, 2019

Another relatively overcast day, with occasional light rain, a moderate southerly wind and temperatures reaching 18 degrees C. During the morning seawatch, 89 Common Scoters, 26 Manx Shearwaters, two Sanderling, eight Sandwich Terns and a Common Tern all flew south; a Bonxie remained offshore. Thornwick Pools hosted a pair of Tufted Ducks, one Redshank, two Ringed Plovers, two Little Ringed Plovers and a Dunlin; a Bar-tailed Godwit was present at South Landing. Single creamcrown Marsh Harrier and Hobby were seen at North Dykes, with presumably another Hobby present at Old Fall. The Bee-eater made another appearance near RSPB Bempton Cliffs mid-afternoon, watched over fields south off the reserve. Almost as rare nowadays, a Turtle Dove visited a garden near Sewerby.

Shelduck, Thornwick Pools, by Alan Walkington

Saturday, June 1st, 2019

The weather consisted of light southerly winds, generally overcast skies and temperatures that reached 18 degrees C. During the morning’s search, six Barnacle Geese, three Eider and seven Sandwich Terns flew south, with 13 Common Scoter, two Red-throated Divers, 20 Manx Shearwaters and 29 Common Terns moving north.

The day’s highlight related to two Great White Egrets that flew south over the outer head mid-morning. Passerine interest included a Garden Warbler, five Spotted Flycatchers and a Corn Bunting.

Barnacle Geese (with Greylag), Fog Station, by Colin Scott