Saturday, May 31st, 2014

The recent run of quality late spring scarcities continued today with a Marsh Warbler in song at Newbiggin (JH et al); Filey’s 13th record, this is the third consecutive spring we’ve hosted a singing male. The male Red-backed Shrike continued to entertain at the Yacht Club (see photos from yesterday below), but otherwise there was little sign of change.

Red-backed Shrike (John Harwood)

Red-backed Shrike (John Harwood)

Red-backed Shrike (Ian Robinson)

Red-backed Shrike (Ian Robinson)

 

 

Friday, May 30th, 2014

A much calmer day – with plenty of brightness, bouts of sunshine and a light easterly breeze – brought a nice haul of classic late spring drift migrants to the recording area.

Two Icterine Warblers – the first multiple day count here for many years- were present, with one intermittently singing and showing on Long Lane and the other feeding in the Top Scrub (MJP et al). No less than three new Red-backed Shrikes were located – a male and female at the Tip (CW et al) and a particularly showy male at the yacht club (HJW et al). At least three Garden Warblers were new in the Top Scrub / Long Lane area.

Icterine Warbler, Top Scrub (Mark Pearson)

Icterine Warbler, Top Scrub (Mark Pearson)

Thursday, May 29th, 2014

Easterlies and overnight rain delivered a singing Icterine Warbler to the south of Long Lane early this morning (MJP), while another local rarity in the more robust shape of a Hawfinch was flushed from Carr Naze (JS) yesterday morning (28th). Otherwise it’s business as usual, with very few migrants to speak of.

Monday, May 26th, 2014

A largely sunny and mild day with a south-easterly wind brought a pulse of raptors during the late morning and early afternoon, the best of which was a Honey-buzzard north-west over the area (MJP), followed soon after by a cream-crown Marsh Harrier.

Honey-buzzard (Mark Pearson)

Honey-buzzard (Mark Pearson)

Sunday, May 25th, 2014

Finally a couple of birds to break the migrant-free monotony today, both of which were at the Dams, and both of which brought a flavour of the Med to an already warm and sunny afternoon. A Spoonbill arrived there mid-p.m – on plumage, very likely the bird seen a few times over the last month – but kindly settled in and put on a fantastic show this time; our trusty Dams photographers arrived a little late to the party, enabling them to clock on to a superb (Black-crowned) NIGHT-HERON (MD, TS et al) as it casually sauntered into their field of view (thus cruelly relegating the showiest Spoonbill in recent memory to an also-ran).

(Black-crowned) Night-heron (Mike Day)

(Black-crowned) Night-heron (Mike Day)

(Black-crowned) Night-heron (Mark Pearson)

(Black-crowned) Night-heron (Mark Pearson)

 

Spoonbill (Mark Pearson)

Spoonbill (Mark Pearson)

Saturday, May 24th, 2014

Another day of promising conditions but with ultimately scant returns; a small scartering of new arrivals included two Spotted Flycatchers, while the male Red-backed Shrike remained faithful to the southern flank of Carr Naze.

Red-backed Shrike (Mark Pearson)

Red-backed Shrike (Mark Pearson)

Friday, May 23rd, 2014

Another day of promising conditions (easterlies with early rain clearing) which delivered a smart male Red-backed Shrike, as well a Redstart and a Spotted Flycatcher, to Carr Naze (per J&TGD). Otherwise new migrants were thin on the ground, as was the case yesterday.

Red-backed Shrike (Mark Pearson)

Red-backed Shrike (Mark Pearson)

Wednesday, May 21st, 2014

A bright day with a southerly airflow and high pressure, with new arrivals being understandably hard to come by on the land and over the sea. Two Hobbys were fresh in, however, with one in off the sea and one hunting behind the Dams (MJP). Waders on the Brigg included 25 Sanderling, eight Dunlin, 12 Ringed Plovers and five Turnstones. At the Dams, two Common Sandpipers remain and a Greenshank circled but thought better of it.

Of interest, a large raptor which headed north-west in the early afternoon was almost certainly a Honey-buzzard, but unfortunately definitive views weren’t possible before the bird disappeared into the haze.

Sanderling (Mark Pearson)

Sanderling (Mark Pearson)

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

Today’s highlight visited the Dams for a couple of hours mid-morning in the shape of a transitional-plumage Curlew Sandpiper (CC et al); the same site saw 16 Common Terns pass through, including two which dropped in for a while, as well as a Common Sandpiper. Three Ringed Plover circled and headed west, while a Whimbrel was at East Lea, with 65 House Martins there in the evening.

Curlew Sandpiper (Ian Robinson)

Curlew Sandpiper (Ian Robinson)

The land was again quiet, with single Garden Warbler (Top Scrub) and Spotted Flycatcher (East Lea) the only notables.

Monday, May 19th, 2014

Today’s highlight was a Spoonbill which headed south over the Dams at 0750 this morning (MJP), while a Little Egret dropped in briefly at East Lea, a flock of 27 Barnacle Geese went south at sea and a Spotted Flycatcher was at the Tip.

Little Egret (Mark Pearson)

Little Egret (Mark Pearson)

 

Sunday, May 18th, 2014

A clear, sunny day with a brisk south-easterly wind again looked promising for a quality fly-over, but sustained sky-watching sessions again failed to produce the goods; however, an Osprey had the good grace to briefly circle over the town at an opportune moment in the early afternoon and was our second of the year so far (MJP).

Osprey (Mark Pearson)

Osprey (Mark Pearson)

Saturday, May 17th, 2014

Limited highlights in warm and settled conditions today consisted of a Marsh Harrier high and in off the sea late morning, a Little Ringed Plover and a Common Sandpiper at the Dams first thing, and a Siskin at the Tip. Yesterday was also quiet, although the spring’s first Spotted Flycatcher arrived in the Rocket Pole Field.

Marsh Harrier over Carr Naze this morning (Mark Pearson)

Marsh Harrier over Carr Naze this morning (Mark Pearson)

 

Thursday, May 15th, 2014

A Wood Sandpiper was at the Dams and East Lea early this morning (MJP), while hirundines were on the move this afternoon, with over 200 Swallows, 45 House Martins and 20 Sand Martins through at Muston Sands.

Wood Sandpiper (Mark Pearson)

Wood Sandpiper (Mark Pearson)

Wednesday, May 14th, 2014

Steady as she goes over recent days, with highlights including a Marsh Harrier over the bay this morning, three Common Sandpipers, eight Purple Sandpipers and 15 Turnstones in the Brigg high tide roost this evening (with two Common Sands there yesterday), a Green Woodpecker (CW) reported over the Country Park yesterday (13th), and a Bar-tailed Godwit and 11 Mute Swans at East Lea on 12th.

Common Sandpiper, East Lea (Mark Pearson)

Common Sandpiper, East Lea (Mark Pearson)

Also of interest, Orange Tips, Walls and many other butterflies are on the wing locally, and Large Red Damselflies have been observed in the Top Scrub.

Immature female Large Red Damselfly (Dan Lombard)

Immature female Large Red Damselfly (Dan Lombard)

 

Sunday, May 11th, 2014

A very quiet few days, with scant new arrivals in challenging conditions. An adult Little Gull along the shoreline at dusk on 9th and a Common Sandpiper at the Dams were the only reports of note, with very limited passage from the Brigg and Hunmanby Gap. Good numbers of Swifts and all three hirundines continue to arrive.

Thursday, May 8th, 2014

A Spoonbill was reported flying north past the seawatch hide this morning (presumably the same bird that visited the Dams a few days ago), and other notables included a Mandarin at Hunmanby Gap and a Marsh Harrier over Carr Naze. A Common Sandpiper remained at the Dams.

Shelduck, Dams (Mark Pearson)

Shelduck, Dams (Mark Pearson)

Wednesday, May 7th, 2014

A fairly quiet couple of days, enlivened mainly by Swift and hirundine passage: over 70 of the former moved west over the Dams this evening, while a Little Ringed Plover dropped in before dusk. A single male Garganey and a showy Cuckoo frequented the same site yesterday (6th) and an Arctic Skua passed the Brigg. Four Greenland Wheatears were at Hunmanby Gap this morning.

Little Ringed Plover (Mark Pearson)

Little Ringed Plover (Mark Pearson)

Monday, May 5th, 2014

A quieter day in the area, with the main highlights being a pair of Avocets on the beach this morning at Hunmanby Gap (KC) which were later relocated at Flamborough, a male Garganey, a White Wagtail and a Dutch-ringed Bar-tailed Godwit on East Lea, and two Common Sandpipers at the Dams.

Garganey, East Lea (Mark Pearson)

Garganey, East Lea (Mark Pearson)

Colour-ringed and tagged Bar-tailed Godwit, East Lea (Mark Pearson). For details on various recent colour-ringed birds observed in the area, see the forthcoming piece on the Articles page.

Colour-ringed and tagged Bar-tailed Godwit, East Lea (Mark Pearson). For details on various recent colour-ringed birds observed in the area, see the forthcoming piece on the Articles page.

Sunday, May 4th, 2014

A change in prevalent conditions to a warmer southerly airflow made for a busy day in the area today. A Black-necked Grebe was found off Hunmanby Gap this morning (KC et al), drifting north along the tideline and present off the town seawall by late a.m; a quality find of a less-than annual species locally. Also at the Gap, a Black-throated Diver was on the sea and a Marsh Harrier came in off, followed by an Osprey (an overdue area first this year) in the afternoon (KC et al). A Spoonbill visited the Dams this evening, another scarce barely annual loca record, and several more Swifts are in the general area today.

Spoonbill (John Harwood)

Spoonbill (John Harwood)

Black-necked Grebe off the town seafront (Mark Pearson)

Black-necked Grebe off the town seafront (Mark Pearson)

Friday, May 2nd, 2014

Garganey (Tony Simpson)

Three Garganey returned to East Lea and continued to entertain there for most of the day. Also at East Lea were a White Wagtail, two Yellow Wagtails, two Dunlins and a Whimbrel.

Thursday, May 1st, 2014

A fairly quiet start to the month, with a White Wagtail still at East Lea, Grasshopper Warbler and Great Northern Diver still at Hunmanby Gap, a singing Cuckoo at the Dams, a Short-eared Owl at the Tip and a continuing movement of Barnacle Geese, with a flock of 250 south this morning.

A colour-ringed Common Gull at East Lea this morning was ringed on 27th July last year on a remote island off NW Norway – full details to follow.

Colour-ringed Norwegian Common Gull (Mark Pearson)

Colour-ringed Norwegian Common Gull (Mark Pearson)