Wednesday, May 24th, 2017

A part cloudy day with the wind west to south force 3 to 0 and a warm 19c.

Sea-watching at the headland recorded 16 Eider south, two Common Scoter, Red-throated Diver, two Great Norther Diver, 14 Manx Shearwater, Little Egret, Common Tern and Arctic Tern all north with five Sandwich Tern south and ten north. Present off the headland were 11 Turnstone.

Other Observatory recording area highlights were Barn Owl, Tawny Owl (the chicks have now fledged at South Landing), three Chiffchaff, five Blackcap, Lesser Whitethroat, six Whitethroat and Spotted Flycatcher.

Tawny Owl by Alan Walkington

Fledged Tawny Owl by Andy Hood

Fox Cub by Mike Smith

 

 

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2017

A mainly sunny day with winds westerly moving to north, force 2 and 15c.

A morning and evening sea-watch had 24 Common Scoter south, two Red-throated Diver south and one north, six Manx Shearwater north, five Sandwich Tern south and three north, Common Tern north and 12 Common Scoter present off the headland.

Today had quite and interesting mix of species in the Observatory recording area with the male Garganey moving from Thornwick Pools to Northcliff Marsh then back to Thornwick by evening. Seven Tufted Duck on Thornwick Pools and two at Northcliff Marsh, two Avocet on Thornwick Pools from afternoon to late evening with also four Ringed Plover, two Little Ringed Plover and four Reed Warbler at the same location. A Turtle Dove flew north over the Golf Course early morning. Other species at various locations were 22 Swift, 43 Swallow, 57 House Martin, three Wheatear, seven Chiffchaff, six Blackcap, four Lesser Whitethroat, 14 Whitethroat, three Sedge Warbler, three Spotted Flycatcher, Yellow Wagtail and a Tree Pipit over Lighthouse Road.

Common Scoter by Andy Hood

Avocet by Joanne Hood

Monday, May 22nd, 2017

Weather today was mainly cloud cover, a southerly force 3 wind and 14c.

Sea-watching off the headland produced ten Barnacle Geese south, 36 Common Scoter south and four north, ten Manx Shearwater south and five north, a Whimbrel, Sanderling and seven Sandwich Tern all north.

A male Garganey was on Thornwick Pools and most likely the bird seen at the weekend at Buckton Pond. At the same location a Sanderling in summer plumage and a Ringed Plover. An early Hobby over Old Fall and elsewhere five Blackcap, three Lesser Whitethroat, ten Whitethroat, Spotted Flycatcher and Corn Bunting.

At Buckton a Barn Owl, Grey Wagtail and a Spotted Flycatcher.

Sanderling by Alan Walkington

Barn Owl at Buckton by Alan Walkington

Sunday, May 21st, 2017

Weather was sunny throughout the day, with a moderate south westerly wind turning south east late afternoon.

The sea watch produced a Great Northern Diver north, five Red-throated Diver, 17 Common Scoter, 17 Sandwich Tern, three Common Tern and ten Manx Shearwater.

On the land, yesterdays Temminck’s Stint remained at Thornwick Pools and continued to show well. A female Pied Flycatcher was reported from near Old Fall during late evening. Three Whimbrel were at South Landing and two Garden Warbler were at South Dykes.

The Buckton area had a particularly good day with a Red-breasted Flycatcher trapped and ringed, a drake Garganey on the pond, Red Kite, Hobby, singing Goldcrest, Short-eared Owl and 70 Swift. Bempton continued to hold the same or another Short-eared Owl.

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Buckton, by Mark Thomas

Garganey, Buckton Pond, by Andy Hood

Temminck’s Stint, Thornwick Pools, by Lee Johnson

Saturday, May 20th, 2017

A moderate south westerly breeze, with heavy rain showers from mid afternoon.

The day started well with a Temminck’s Stint found early on at Thornwick pools, the bird flicked between the upper and lower pools throughout the day. The pools also hosted a Greenshank and Common Sandpiper. A female/1st summer male Golden Oriole was found at South Landing mid morning but was only seen briefly before heading into dense cover in the ravine. Two Short-eared Owl and four Corn Bunting were around the Gorse field, with Spotted Flycatchers at Old Fall and South Landing and a late Redwing in Holmes Gut. Hobbys were noted over Lighthouse road and at South Dykes.

The sea watch produced Arctic Skua, Sandwich Tern, six Manx Shearwater and a Red-throated Diver.

West of the dykes; Bempton held a female Ring Ouzel, Short-eared Owl and Cuckoo, with fly over Red Kite and Hobby. Whilst a Marsh Harrier was seen at Buckton along with a Fieldfare.

Temminck’s Stint, Thornwick Pools, by Lee Johnson

Temminck’s Stint, Thornwick Pools, by Lee Johnson

Friday, May 19th, 2017

Rain predominated throughout the day, with winds from the south west. Partly due to the weather flew notable birds were logged. Highlights on the land included a Spotted Flycatcher on the outer headland, and a Greenshank and drake teal on Thornwick Pools. 

Five Manx Shearwater flew north during the afternoon.

Greenshank, Thornwick pools, by Brett Richards

Thursday, May 18th, 2017

A day of light westerly winds and bright skies until increasing cloud established in the afternoon. During the seawatch, two Eider, two Red-breasted Mergansers, 77 Manx Shearwaters and 277 Puffins flew north, with 42 Sandwich Terns moving south.

A Short-eared Owl was located in the Gorse Field late on, whilst two Garden Warblers represented the most interesting passerine record.

West of the Dykes, the Black-browed Albatross was again reported from Bempton Cliffs RSPB c. 0800hrs only; it was last seen flying back out to sea. A Short-eared Owl was also seen at the reserve.

Sedge Warbler, Thornwick, by Alan Walkington

Wednesday, May 17th, 2017

For the first time in seemingly an age, significant rain fell in what turned out to be a very wet day. Seawatching produced 51 Common Scoters flying south, three Manx Shearwaters north, two Whimbrel south and 11 Sandwich Terns.

Elsewhere, Thornwick Pools attracted two Little Ringed Plovers and four Ringed Plovers, with single Whimbrel and Sanderling on South Landing beach. The undoubted highlight related to the sighting of a Serin at South Landing that then flew east towards the Lighthouse.

Lesser Black-backed Gull, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Sand Martin, Thornwick Pools, by Don Hustings

Tuesday, May 16th, 2017

The morning sea-watch was steady and produced nine Common Scoter north, Manx Shearwater south, four Sandwich Terns south and nine Carrion Crows past.

The highlight of the outer recording area was a Great White Egret located at Micklemires in the evening. Other highlights recorded were a pair of Tufted Duck, two Little Ringed Plover, Ringed Plover, Wood Sandpiper, Dunlin, Barn Owl, two Wheatear, Sedge Warbler and two Reed Warbler – all at Thornwick.

At Bempton Cliffs, the adult Black-browed Albatross was again reported flying north-west and close in off from Bartlett viewpoint at 1300hrs. Also in the same area, 14 Barnacle Geese flew over RSPB Bempton and Buckton, with a Fieldfare at Buckton and a Spotted Flycatcher at RSPB Bempton.

Great White Egret, Micklemires, by Brett Richards

Wood Sandpiper, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Hood

Monday, May 15th, 2017

A cloudy day, with moderate southerly winds and spells of rain. During the seawatch, 54 Common Scoters, single Goosander and Red-throated Diver and 28 Sandwich Terns flew south.

Thornwick Pools hosted two Little Ringed Plovers and a Dunlin, whilst the Tawny Owl family continued to show well at South Landing.

Dunlin, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Tawny Owls, South Landing, by Jo Symon

Sunday, May 14th, 2017

A day of moderate south-westerly winds, sunny intervals after a wet start and temperatures that reached 19 degrees C. Seawatch highlights included a drake Garganey that flew south, four Tufted Ducks south, a Manx Shearwater north, with 45 Sandwich Terns and single Common and Arctic Terns also south.

Thornwick Pools attracted three Ringed Plovers, one Dunlin and a lone Common Sandpiper. Additional interest was provided by sightings of a Hooded Crow, two Spotted Flycatchers and two Tree Pipits.

West of the Dykes, a Short-eared Owl frequented Bempton Cliffs RSPB.

Kestrel, Outer Head, by Brett Richards

Tawny Owl, South Landing, by June & Malcolm Fox

Saturday, May 13th, 2017

It was a day of sunny intervals and moderate/strong south-westerly winds, with temperatures reaching 17 degrees C. The undoubted headline related to the adult Black-browed Albatross that flew south past Bempton Cliffs RSPB reserve (1422hrs) and then latterly Thornwick Bay (1448hrs). Despite a group of expectant birders waiting at the Fog Station it did not go south there, so presumably headed straight out to sea after the last sighting.

Seawatch records of a more mundane nature included 11 Tufted Duck and 26 Sandwich Terns moving south. Thornwick Pools attracted three Little Ringed Plovers and two Common Sandpipers. Two Marsh Harriers, at least one Hobby and a Merlin roamed the headland.

Amongst the passerine migrants, a Serin that frequented the Gorse Field early morning stole the headlines. Other sightings included a Garden Warbler, four Spotted Flycatchers, nine Wheatear, two Whinchat and a Fieldfare.

West of the Dykes, a Hobby flew south-east over Buckton.

Serin, Gorse Field, by Lee Johnson

Serin, Gorse Field, by Lee Johnson

‘argenteus’ Herring Gull with yellow legs, South Cliffs, by Brett Richards

Friday, May 12th, 2017

An overcast, misty day at times, with light winds and a few spots of rain occasionally. During the seawatch, a Great Northern Diver flew north and 193 Sandwich Terns moved south.

The three Dotterel surprisingly re-appeared on the Golf Course early morning before departing west. Thornwick Pools attracted two Common Sandpipers, three Dunlin and a Snipe. Passerine migrants included a Goldcrest, one Fieldfare, a ‘continental’ Song Thrush, one Redstart and 11 Wheatears.

West of the Dykes, Buckton attracted a Short-eared Owl.

Dotterel, Flamborough GC, by Andy Hood

Wheatear, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Thursday, May 11th, 2017

A day of south-east winds and sunny intervals. Seawatching was rewarded with a pair of Garganey flying north, with 39 Sandwich and four Arctic Terns heading south.

Thornwick Pools attracted three Little Ringed Plovers, four Ringed Plovers and three Dunlin. Three female Dotterel on the Golf Course early morning were the best sighting of the day; a Blue-headed Wagtail also frequented the same area. Additional sightings included a Goldcrest, two Redstarts, a Whinchat, a Fieldfare and one Tree Pipit.

West of the Dykes, a Ring Ouzel and 15 Corn Buntings were noted at Bempton Cliffs RSPB.

Puffins, North Dykes, by Don Hustings

Redstart, Old Fall, by Brett Richards

Wednesday, May 10th, 2017

After weeks of northerly winds, a change to light south-west winds and sunny skies. During the seawatch, 12 Common Scoter, a Manx Shearwater and 20 Sandwich Terns flew north.

Away from the sea, sightings included a Barnacle Goose, four Ringed Plover, two Grey Plover that flew over, a Hobby near Old Fall, a Goldcrest, single Spotted Flycatcher and male Black Redstart at South Landing, two Whinchat, one White Wagtail and five Yellow Wagtails.

Barnacle Goose, Outer Head, by Andrew Allport

Ringed Plover, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Hood

Black Redstart, South Landing, by Brett Richards

Tuesday, May 9th, 2017

The day started with moderate north-westerly winds and heavily overcast skies. However, winds dropped in strength during the day and evening sunshine heralded a change. Seawatching highlights included three Pintail, a Great Northern Diver, two Manx Shearwaters and 17 Sandwich Terns flying north, whilst three Velvet Scoters moved south.

The White-fronted Goose accompanied the Greylags in the Thornwick area, where a Common Sandpiper and two Little Ringed Plovers were also present. Late afternoon a Wood Sandpiper was located along Lighthouse Road on the small pool opposite Old Fall Steps. Another new arrival, a Hobby appeared over the village on two occasions. Passerine interest was headlined by the continued presence of the Siberian Stonechat at South Landing. Other sightings included a Fieldfare, one Ring Ouzel, a White Wagtail and a Brambling.

Yellow Wagtail, Buckton, by Don Hustings

Monday, May 8th, 2017

Strong north-north-westerly winds lasted all day, that featured heavy overcast skies and temperatures that barely reached ten degrees C. Seawatching highlights included seven Common Scoter, 25 Manx Shearwaters, six Sandwich Terns, an Arctic Tern, one Arctic Skua all north, with one Bonxie heading south.

The White-fronted Goose remained in residence, as did the Siberian Stonechat that showed well all day at South Landing. A White Wagtail visited Thornwick Pools.

West of the Dykes, a Short-eared Owl remained at Bempton Cliffs RSPB.

White-fronted Goose, Thornwick, by Brett Richards

Siberian Stonechat, South Landing, by Andy Hood

Sunday, May 7th, 2017

The weather consisted of strong north-north-westerly winds and overcast skies. Seawatching produced five Eider flying south, with ten Common Scoter, a Manx Shearwater, two Whimbrel and three Sandwich Terns heading north.

Given the prevailing wind direction, three Spoonbills that toured the headland from 1600-1630hrs seemed somewhat incongruous. In addition, the Siberian Stonechat remained in residence at South Landing, where the Mealy Redpoll continued to attend the feeders at YWT’s Living Seas Centre.

Tawny Owl, South Landing, by Jo Hood

Siberian Stonechat, South Landing, by Andrew Allport

Siberian Stonechat, South Landing, by Andrew Allport

Mealy Redpoll, South Landing, by Andy Hood

Saturday, May 6th, 2017

Another cold day, with moderate north-easterly winds and overcast skies. The highlight of the morning’s seawatch was a Blue Fulmar that flew north.

Thornwick Pools hosted a single Dunlin, whilst a Hobby overflew there. Elsewhere, the discovery of a Siberian Stonechat at South Landing was unexpected; it showed well for the whole day, feeding along the isolated hedge in the sheep-field immediately east of the ravine. Other notable sightings included an influx of Swifts, with a minimum 16 logged, a singing Wood Warbler at South Landing, two Redstarts, a Whinchat, two Tree Pipits, two White Wagtails and one Mealy Redpoll.

West of the Dykes, Little Ringed Plover and Common Sandpiper visited Buckton Pond, with Swift, Grasshopper Warbler, Whinchat, six Wheatear, 3 Lesser Whitethroat nearby. Eleven Bar-tailed Godwits flew north over Speeton. 

Siberian Stonechat, South Landing, by Andrew Allport

Siberian Stonechat, South Landing, by Tony Dixon

Redstart, South Landing, by Tony Dixon

Common Redstart, Old Fall, by Andrew Allport

Friday, May 5th, 2017

Another day of moderate/strong north-easterly winds and prolonged sunny spells, with two Manx Shearwaters the best of a quiet seawatch.

Single White-fronted Goose and Barnacle Goose lingered with the Greylag flock. The day’s highlight related to the discovery of a male Dotterel at Oceanview, which showed well before flying east. A Swift appeared over the village late afternoon, whilst individual Ring Ouzel and Whinchat were also logged.

West of the Dykes, Buckton hosted a Common Sandpiper and a Grasshopper Warbler which was ringed.

Grasshopper Warbler ringed at Buckton, by Mark Thomas

Dotterel, Oceanview, by Brett Richards

Dotterel, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Thursday, May 4th, 2017

A day of moderate/strong north-easterly winds and sunny intervals after an overcast start. During the seawatch, two Red-throated Divers and a Manx Shearwater flew north, whilst eight Sandwich Terns moved south.

Wader sightings included two Little Ringed Plovers, five Whimbel, a Bar-tailed Godwit and two Common Sandpipers, whilst a Whinchat graced South Landing.

West of the Dykes, a Black Redstart was in Bempton village and a Greenshank visited Buckton Pond.

Eider, South Landing, by Alan Walkington

Black Redstart, Bempton, by Dave Aitken

Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017

The weather consisted of moderate/strong northerly winds and prolonged sunny spells. Sightings included the lone Barnacle Goose touring the headland, single Common Sandpiper and Dunlin, two Little Ringed Plovers, two Bar-tailed Godwits and four Whimbrel. In addition, a Hobby flew west over South Landing. Passerine interest included two Fieldfares, two Pied Flycatchers and a Common Redstart.

West of the Dykes, Buckton attracted two Tufted Duck and lone Redshank, Greenshank and Common Sandpiper. Three Short-eared Owls, a Grasshopper Warbler and three Yellow Wagtails were also present.

Common Sandpiper, Thornwick Pools, by Jo Hood

Short-eared Owl, Buckton, by Paul Reed

Tuesday, May 2nd, 2017

It was a misty day at times, with a moderate and cold north-easterly wind. A single Barnacle Goose toured the area, with four Great Crested Grebes and three Eiders off South Landing. Single Grey and Golden Plovers were logged, along with two Little Ringed Plovers, a Ringed Plover, one Green Sandpiper, a Common Sandpiper, one Whimbrel and two Bar-tailed Godwits. Passerine interest included two Goldcrests, three singing Reed Warblers at Thornwick Pools, a Ring Ouzel, five Whinchats, 11 Wheatears, two Tree Pipits and a White Wagtail.

West of the Dykes, Short-eared Owl and a singing Grasshopper Warbler were recorded at Buckton, with Marsh Harrier and Short-eared Owl at Bempton Cliffs RSPB.

Common Sandpiper, Thornwick Pools, by Alan Walkington

Dunlin, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Hood

Grasshopper Warbler, Buckton, by Paul Reed

Whinchat, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Tree Pipit, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Monday, May 1st, 2017

After an overcast start to the day the sunshine broke through, whilst easterly winds predominated. During the seawatch, three Bar-tailed Godwits, 24 Sandwich Terns and two Common Terns flew south.

The sea off South Landing attracted a summer-plumaged Black-throated Diver, a Great Northern Diver, one Great Crested Grebe and two Arctic Terns. The day’s highlight was the discovery of a female Garganey on the outer head. Additional sightings included one Barnacle Goose (over), a Green Sandpiper on a pool near Old Fall Steps, three Ringed Plover, one Little Ringed Plover, a Common Sandpiper and five Dunlin at Thornwick Pools.

A Swift overflew the outer head, whilst passerine migrants included single Ring Ouzel, Black Redstart, Common Redstart, Tree Pipit, Reed Warbler, five Yellow Wagtails, three White Wagtails and four Garden Warblers.

West of the Dykes, Bempton Cliffs RSPB hosted a Blue Fulmar, a Short-eared Owl, a Ring Ouzel and two Common Redstarts. Buckton attracted the year’s first Wryneck, which showed briefly by the Pond; other sightings there included seven Tufted Duck, a Fieldfare and a Ring Ouzel.

Wryneck, Buckton Pond, by Mark Thomas

Garganey, outer head, by Andy Hood

Garden Warbler, Old Fall, by Andy Hood

Sunday, April 30th, 2017

The weather consisted of moderate/strong south-easterly winds and sunny spells. Although there wasn’t a morning seawatch, a brief watch early afternoon was rewarded with a Pochard, seven Bar-tailed Godwits, five Arctic Terns and 35 Sandwich Terns all flying south.

A Barnacle Goose frequented North Marsh early morning. Thornwick Pools attracted 20 Bar-tailed Godwits (14 on the pool, with another six circling low before heading off), three Whimbrel, a Knot, two Sanderling, a Common Sandpiper, seven Dunlin, four Snipe and a White Wagtail. South Landing hosted an additional ten Bar-tailed Godwits, a Whimbrel and two Great Crested Grebes, whilst a first-summer Mediterranean Gull was on the sea off Old Fall.

Passerines were hard to find in the strong wind, although a Red-breasted Flycatcher moved through gardens on the outer head in the middle of the day and a male Redstart was located near Old Fall Steps.

West of the Dykes, Buckton attracted two Grey Partridges, five Bar-tailed Godwits (heading south-east), a Short-eared Owl, 23 Wheatear, two Whinchat and two Fieldfare. Two Curlew, a Redshank, one Green Sandpiper and two Dunlin frequented Buckton Pond. Bempton Cliffs attracted single Marsh Harrier and Short-eared Owl.

Dunlin, Buckton Pond, by Mark Thomas

Whinchat, Buckton, by Mark Thomas

Wheatear, Buckton, by Mark Thomas

Bar-tailed Godwits, Thornwick Pools, by Karen Bradley

Whimbrel, Thornwick Pools, by Karen Bradley

Sanderling, Thornwick Pools, by Craig Thomas

Saturday, April 29th, 2017

It was an overcast day, with south-easterly winds that strengthened during the day. Seawatching highlights included 80 Barnacle Geese, a summer-plumaged Great Northern Diver, seven Common Terns, two Arctic Terns and 36 Sandwich Terns flying north, with a Bar-tailed Godwit and two Whimbrel heading south.

A Little Grebe visited North Marsh, single Barnacle and White-fronted Geese frequented the Micklemires/Thornwick area, with the Pools attracting two Little Ringed Plovers, four Bar-tailed Godwits, two Snipe, one Dunlin and a Greenshank. Three Bar-tailed Godwits and four Whimbrel were present at South Landing.

Passerine migrants included a Hooded Crow on the Golf Course, a Ring Ouzel over Thornwick, ten Whitethroats, three Lesser Whitethroats, six Sedge Warblers, 14 Wheatear, two White Wagtails and three Yellow Wagtails.

West of the Dykes, a Marsh Harrier, and lone Tree Pipit and Ring Ouzel were present at Buckton.

Tree Pipit ringed at Buckton, by Mark Thomas

Bar-tailed Godwits, Thornwick Pools, by Craig Thomas

Greenshank, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Hood

White Wagtail, Thornwick Pools, by Craig Thomas

Friday, April 28th, 2017

It was generally overcast, with occasional brighter spells and moderate northerly winds. Wader interest included three Whimbrel, two Little Ringed Plovers and 87 Turnstone. Three House Martins arrived in the village during a day that featured 27 Blackcaps, 16 Chiffchaffs, five Willow Warblers, five Lesser Whitethroats, nine Whitethroats, five Sedge Warblers, a Ring Ouzel, two Fieldfare and a Redwing.

West of the Dykes, two Great Crested Grebes and ten Sanderling were noted at Sewerby.

Kestrel, outer head, by Andrew Allport

Treecreeper, South Landing, by June & Malcolm Fox

Thursday, April 27th, 2017

Winds remained from a general north-westerly direction, with heavy showers during an overcast morning, with brighter spells later. During the seawatch, 13 Common Scoter and 11 Sandwich Terns flew north, with an Eider heading south.

Seven Whimbrel, a Bar-tailed Godwit and one Purple Sandpiper were on the headland. Passerine interest included eight Wheatears and two Fieldfare.

West of the Dykes, two Short-eared Owls frequented Bempton Cliffs RSPB.

Little Ringed Plover, Thornwick Pools, by Don Hustings

Greenfinch, Thornwick, by Don Hustings

Wednesday, April 26th, 2017

The morning featured very strong north-easterly winds that gradually abated later in the day. Temperatures often hovered around 4 degrees C, even in the middle of the day, although it was largely sunny. Seawatching highlights included a Great Northern Diver, five Manx Shearwaters, a Little Gull and three Sandwich Terns flying north.

Sightings on the headland itself included two Bar-tailed Godwits, four Whimbrel, the Grasshopper Warbler near South Dykes, three Fieldfare and a White Wagtail.

Bar-tailed Godwit, South Landing, by Andrew Allport

Whimbrel, Micklemires, by Andy Hood

Hare, Thornwick, by Alan Walkington

Tuesday, April 25th, 2017

The weather consisted of very strong northerly winds and occasional heavy showers, often wintry in nature. During the seawatch, 463 Fulmars flew north, as did two Blue Fulmars and one Whimbrel.

Birding on the headland proved very difficult given the conditions, although four Whimbrel and two Bar-tailed Godwits were present. West of the Dykes, a Short-eared Owl frequented Buckton.

Bar-tailed Godwit, South Landing, by Andy Hood

Monday, April 24th, 2017

Northerly winds strengthened during a day that featured showers and temperatures that dropped to 5 degrees C. Seawatching highlights included 12 Common Scoters flying south, two Whimbrel and two Common Terns north, with eight Sandwich Terns south.

The White-fronted Goose was relocated on Thornwick Fishing Lake and seven Whimbrel were on the headland. A total of 12 Wheatears were still present, whilst a Grasshopper Warbler reeling on the west side of South Dykes was new.

White-fronted Goose, Thornwick, by Andy Hood

White-fronted Goose, Thornwick, by Brett Richards

Grasshopper Warbler, South Dykes, by Alan Walkington

Sunday, April 23rd, 2017

Winds were light and generally with a westerly component, whilst sunny intervals also featured throughout much of the day. Seawatching produced 75 Common Scoter, 328 Fulmars, four Manx Shearwaters, a Whimbrel and 27 Sandwich Terns all flying north.

In addition, a Great Northern Diver flew north alongside the cliffs and four Little Ringed Plovers and three Whimbrel were logged. Passerine migrants included 13 Willow Warblers, eight Whitethroats, two Fieldfare, one Ring Ouzel, a male Black Redstart, 11 Wheatears and five White Wagtails.

Little Ringed Plover, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Hood

Saturday, April 22nd, 2017

It was a day of moderate north-westerly winds, generally cloudy skies with periodic drizzle. Seawatching highlights included two Eiders flying south, a Manx Shearwater north, 11 Sandwich Terns, a Common Tern and 112 Puffins also north.

A White-fronted Goose frequented fields near Micklemires (opposite the entrance to Thornwick CP), three Tufted Ducks were on North Marsh, a Green Sandpiper on Thornwick Pools, three Whimbrel on the Golf Course and 44 Turnstones at South Landing. Passerine migrants included a White Wagtail, one Grey Wagtail and a Garden Warbler.

Wheatear, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Greenland Wheatear, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport

Oil Beetle, Flamborough, by Andy Hood

Friday, April 21st, 2017

Moderate south-westerly winds strengthened slightly, and had a more westerly component later, in a day that featured sunny spells. An appreciable arrival of migrants occurred, including 58 Wheatears. Additional tallies included a male Merlin, a Green Sandpiper at Thornwick Pools, three Whimbrel, two Hooded Crows together near the golf course, a Grasshopper Warbler near Old Fall, one Sedge Warbler, a Black Redstart, a White Wagtail, three Yellow Wagtails and a Mealy Redpoll near the Lighthouse. 

West of the Dykes, a Hobby sparred with local Peregrines at Buckton.

Chiffchaff, South Dykes, by Alan Walkington

Thursday, April 20th, 2017

After a brief spell of south-westerlies yesterday, winds resumed back to the dominant north-westerlies of late, though gentle, with sunny spells and highs of 15°C.

Between Old fall and the Outer Head a single Redstart, three Whitethroat, 11 each of Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler, eight Blackcap, four Yellow Wagtail, four Wheatear, single Fieldfare and three Redwing were noted. A Hooded Crow frequented bare fields near Northcliffe Marsh and Thornwick Pools held four Little Ringed Plover and three Snipe. 

A Whimbrel was opposite Thornwick Holiday Camp, with another at Oceanview. Five Wheatear were also present at the latter site.

Wheatear, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Wednesday, April 19th, 2017

The weather consisted of moderate south-westerly winds and, although the day started with sunshine, it was generally overcast. During the seawatch, 30 Common Scoters flew south, two Whimbrel went north, 30 Sandwich Terns were also logged, whilst a Bonxie headed south.

Two Grey Partridge on the outer head represented a good record of an ever scarcer species. Single Marsh Harrier and Grey Plover also flew south there. The switch in wind direction also prompted the arrival of migrants including ten Willow Warblers, single Lesser Whitethroat, Whitethroat and Sedge Warblers, three Yellow Wagtails, two White Wagtails, a Redwing and seven Wheatears. The Grasshopper Warbler remained at South Dykes.

Bempton Cliffs RSPB also attracted one Short-eared Owl and a Lesser Whitethroat. 

Yellow Wagtail, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Hood

Tuesday, April 18th, 2017

Another largely sunny day, with a moderate north-westerly wind again suppressing temperatures. Seawatching highlights included two Velvet Scoters and five Manx Shearwaters flying north and two Sandwich Terns moving south.

A pair of Shoveler, a pair of Red-breasted Merganser and six Eiders sheltered between South Landing and South Dykes. Thornwick Pools hosted three Snipe, three Little Ringed Plovers and a Snipe. The Grasshopper Warbler remained in residence at South Dykes, whilst a White Wagtail was on the nearby golf links; another White Wagtail frequented the golf course on the outer head. 

Little Ringed Plover, Thornwick Pools, by Alan Walkington

Monday, April 17th, 2017

It was a largely sunny day, with light/moderate northerly winds. Seawatching was rewarded with three Manx Shearwaters, 33 Sandwich Terns, a Common Tern and an Arctic Tern all flying north.

Thornwick Pools again hosted duos of Little Ringed Plover, Snipe and Dunlin, with a single Grey Plover flying over. South Landing attracted a lone Ringed Plover.

West of the Dykes, Buckton Pond hosted a Green Sandpiper, with a Whitethroat and two Brambling nearby. Two Short-eared Owls were at Bempton Cliffs RSPB.

Dunlin, Thornwick Pools, by Brett Richards

Short-eared Owl, Bempton Cliffs RSPB, by Alan Walkington

Cuckoo Bee, South Landing, by Andy Hood

Sunday, April 16th, 2017

The weather consisted of light north-north-west winds, with sunny intervals during the morning and light rain in the afternoon. Seawatching highlights included a Blue Fulmar, 341 Fulmars, two Manx Shearwaters and three Sandwich Terns flying north.  

Thornwick Pools attracted two Little Ringed Plovers, two Dunlin and two Snipe. Elsewhere, sightings included two Whimbrel, one Hooded Crow, the Grasshopper Warbler at South Dykes, a Whitethroat, 12 Blackcaps, the Pied Flycatcher still at Old Fall and a White Wagtail.

West of the Dykes, two Short-eared Owls frequented Bempton Cliffs RSPB, with one Short-eared Owl, four Wheatears and three White Wagtails at Buckton.

Grasshopper Warbler, South Dykes, by Craig Thomas

Saturday, April 15th, 2017

North-west winds were moderate, occasionally strong, during a day of sunny intervals and occasional showers. During the seawatch, six Shelduck and 260 Fulmars flew north, a Whimbrel went south, whilst six Sandwich Terns were also logged (four north, two south).

A Whimbrel was off South Dykes and other new arrivals included a male Pied Flycatcher in Old Fall and a Grasshopper Warbler at South Dykes. Additional migrants included four Willow Warblers, a Whitethroat and eight Blackcaps.

Pied Flycatcher, Old Fall, by Andy Hood

Pied Flycatcher, Old Fall, by Brett Richards

Friday, April 14th, 2017

The weather consisted of moderate south-westerly winds, with occasional sunny spells and light showers. Seawatching produced three Red-throated Divers, 11 Sandwich Terns and four Lesser Black-backed Gulls moving north.

Two Whitethroats were the year’s first, with five Willow Warblers and two House Martins also fresh-in.

Sand Martin, Thornwick Pools, by Andy Hood

Thursday, April 13th, 2017

A day of moderate westerly winds and sunny intervals in the morning, cloudier in the afternoon. During the seawatch, four Sandwich Terns flew south and 336 Fulmars together with 43 Puffins moved north.

Wildfowl in residence included a Wigeon and three Eider, whilst summer migrants records included 15 Chiffchaffs in South Dykes.

West of the Dykes, a Grasshopper Warbler was singing near the visitor centre at Bempton Cliffs RSPB.

Eider, South Dykes, by Andy Hood

Wednesday, April 12th, 2017

The weather consisted of moderate north-westerly winds, sunny intervals and occasional showers. Seawatching was quiet, with five Sandwich Terns the only noteworthy sighting. Five Eider were on the sea near South Dykes, whilst a Common Buzzard, eight Chiffchaff, two Blackcaps and a Willow Warbler were in the nearby ravine. In addition, Oceanview hosted four Wheatear.

Meadow Pipit, Flamborough, by Don Hustings

Tuesday, April 11th, 2017

Winds remained moderate and from the west, whilst it was largely overcast in the morning and sunnier later in the day. North Marsh hosted a Little Grebe, single Willow Warbler and Blackcap were noted in South Landing, whilst four Wheatears and a White Wagtail were on the outer head.

Puffin, outer head, by Alan Walkington

Monday, April 10th, 2017

In contrast to this weekend a switch in weather saw brisk north-westerlies, overcast skies and temperatures barely registering double figures. Seawatching highlights include a single Manx Shearwater and Ringed Plover north, 720 Fulmar north, six Common Scoter north (one south), two Red-throated Diver north (one south) and two Greylag Geese in-off and north.

On land, four Wheatear, 13 Chiffchaff, two Yellow Wagtail, single White Wagtail, Blackcap and Redwing and four Sand Martin were present on the headland. Thornwick Pools held two Little Ringed Plover and three Snipe.

At Bempton Cliffs RSPB, two Short-eared Owl were present early evening.

Wheatear, Outer Head, by Andrew Allport

Sunday, April 9th, 2017

Moderate south-westerly winds strengthened during the warmest day of the year which featured virtually unbroken sunshine and temperatures that reached 19 degrees C.

Arriving migrants included a Whimbrel, 11 Swallows, seven Wheatears, three Redwing, five Ring Ouzels, four Willow Warblers, a White Wagtail, one Yellow Wagtail, two Crossbills and two Siskin.  

West of the Dykes, sightings at Buckton included a Merlin, two Ring Ouzels and a Yellow Wagtail.

Yellowhammer, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Saturday, April 8th, 2017

Unbroken sunshine throughout, with light south-westerly winds. During the seawatch, a Grey Plover flew south and seven Sandwich Terns were logged.

A Whimbrel flew north, with additional migrants including three Swallows, a Willow Warbler, 29 Chiffchaffs, seven Blackcap, three Redwing, one Wheatear, a Yellow Wagtail, two White Wagtails and a Brambling. 

Brambling, Oceanview, by Andy Hood

Friday, April 7th, 2017

It was generally overcast, with light/moderate north-westerly winds, although sunny spells developed late afternoon. Seawatching was disappointing, with a single Sandwich Tern flying north the most notable sighting. In addition, other records included a Little Ringed Plover, one Swallow, a Raven near South Landing, a Black Redstart on the outer head, two Brambling and two Siskin.

White Wagtail, Golf Course, by Andrew Allport

Grey Seal, Outer Head, by Alan Walkington

Weasel, Outer Head, by Andy Hood

Thursday, April 6th, 2017

The weather consisted of light westerly winds and sunny skies. Seawatching highlights included the two Egyptian Geese flying south and 24 Sandwich Terns moving north.

The juvenile Glaucous Gull again loafed on the field adjacent to North Marsh. Passerine interest was provided by a Hooded Crow, one Willow Warbler, two Ring Ouzels, two Blackcap, a Black Redstart and one Fieldfare.

Glaucous Gull, North Marsh, by Andrew Allport

Glaucous Gull, North Marsh, by Andrew Allport

White Wagtail, Golf Course, by Brett Richards

Wednesday, April 5th, 2017

A day of light/moderate north-westerly winds and largely sunny skies. Seawatching was rewarded with a juvenile Glaucous Gull flying south and a Hooded Crow moving north.

In the local context, the rarest sighting related to two Egyptian Geese located near North Marsh; with only a handful of local records, April is proving a typical month for wandering individuals. Passerine interest included three Ring Ouzels, 20 Chiffchaff, a Blackcap, seven Goldcrest, the long-staying Hooded Crow at Oceanview, three White Wagtails and a Corn Bunting that toured the outer head.

Egyptian Goose, North Marsh, by Andy Hood