Previously "Diary of a Birding Medic"

Previously "Rugby Birder"

Monday, 29 May 2017

Cliff Top Drama! RSPB Bempton Cliffs - 28th May 2017.

Good morning!

When I heard my call to the cliffs this morning I had no idea that the day would be so challenging for some of the wildlife! There was certainly a very fine line between life and death for two of the seabirds! However, the day started with a promise of sunshine, blue skies and warmth to such an extent that yours truly was to be seen on the cliff tops in shorts for the first time this year! The wind in the morning was challengingly strong but abated after lunch when the temperatures started to rise. The reserve was very busy from early doors with just about everyone happily achieving sightings of a "must see" bird - the Puffin!


A triad of Puffins in a triangular hole!

Nature can be very cruel! Seeing a Razorbill entangled in what was probably fishing line just off Bartlett Nab viewpoint was a very sad event. The bird was desperately trying to free itself but it's efforts were futile. The bird would have been destined for a premature death.....

Save for the brave and heroic rescue by highly trained personnel! Roped up and donning safety equipment, slowly our hero descended the cliff (c400ft above the sea!) to reach the Razorbill!

It took a while to cut the Razorbill free whereby it was placed in a protective bag and brought back to the viewpoint for examination, with our hero receiving a hearty round of applause from the observing visitors. Luckily the Razorbill was uninjured and was able to be released back onto the cliffs in order to return to its waiting mate. A big thank you must go out to our brave rescuers!

The drama of the day did not end here. On Grandstand viewpoint, above the known nesting Puffin nest tunnel, a Herring Gull took a fancy to a meal of Kittiwake. The Herring Gull held the Kittiwake around it's neck for what seemed an eternity as the Kittiwake desperately tried to escape. This was cruel nature live.

This fight for life ended well, however, with the Kittiwake managing to break away after a good ten minutes+, but it is not known if injury was sustained.

Ending on a more cheerful note, many people have problems identifying Guillemots and Razorbills so it is good when both can be seen together.

We all have that "one" friend!

And finally, todays sightings


pat commons said...

Another great story with even greater pictures Kevin.

Kevin Groocock said...

Thank you Pat

Cb said...

I often read your blog. Thanks for these interesting stories. I spent two days last week walking on the cliffs at Flamborough and Bempton. Great photos always!

Kevin Groocock said...

Thank you Cb! I hope you enjoyed your recent visit to our glorious cliffs. Return soon!