Previously "Diary of a Birding Medic"

Previously "Rugby Birder"

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Thornwick Pool, Flamborough

Redshank (one bird present)

Sometimes it is nice to leave the busyness of the cliffs and just sit and relax in a different environment and Thornwick Pool fits the bill! Although this morning was relatively quiet (birdwise) but you never know what might drop in, so it retains an element of excitement! In the couple of hours that I spent there, a few photographic opportunities presented themselves, although the excitement didn't materialise!

Young Coot are so ugly but retain a degree of cuteness!

Dunlin with Ringed Plover

I always thought that Dunlin's black bellies were black feathers. Now I know it is as a result of running through goose poo!

Dunlin (three birds present)

Little Ringed Plover (one bird present)

Ringed Plover (three birds present)

A Pied Wagtail dropped in

As did a Meadow Pipit

And the lingering female Wigeon


Also present were the Shelduck pair.

A "monster" fish! ?Carp?

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

Friday, 26 May 2017

Glorious Gannets

Gannet "Sky Pointing"

What a fantastic day - blue sky, bright sunshine and hot, hot, hot! Today it was fantastic to meet up with midlands friend and birder/photographer Di Stone who is in the area for a few days and catch up after a couple of years!

The Gannets were, as usual, glorious and begged to be captured in photographic imagery!

Walking to meet Di at Jubilee viewpoint, I couldn't resist the colours of the Pink Campion, with RAF Bempton as a backdrop!

Glorious Gannets

Love Gannets and Gannet Love! (featuring "voyeur" Gannet!)

Gannet Portraits

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Thornwick Pool, Flamborough


Today, Symphony was due to be groomed in Flamborough and once dropped off gave me the opportunity to spend an hour at Thornwick Pools. Some good birds have been seen here lately, including Temminck's Stint, Greenshank and drake Garganey, but alas, all had departed. On the grassland between the car park and hide, a Skylark caught my eye.

At the hide, two Little Ringed Plovers scurried along the waters edge but seldom came together

Also, three Ringed Plovers were present

The male and female Shelduck seemed at peace with the world but got a little excited when a third bird arrived and that bird was soon seen off!

male Shelduck

fem Shelduck

True to form, the unexpected arrived on the pool in the form of two Avocets!

Also noted were Meadow Pipits, Willow Warblers, Reed warblers, Moorhens, Coots, Mallard, Goldfinches, Greenfinches, Linnets, Tree Sparrows, Swallows, Sand Martins, House Martins and on the fishing lake, Grey Lag Geese, Tufted Ducks.