Tuesday 31 January 2017

Tuesday 31st January 2017

The only news today came from Crook Ness, Wykeham South Lake and Holbeck.

The 16 Shore Larks were seen again today at Crook Ness according to the bird news services.

At Wykeham South Lake the best bird was a 2nd calendar year ♀ Scaup supported by 32 Pochard, ♂ Goosander, 3 Goldeneye, 34 Tufted Duck, 2 Little Grebes, 6 Great-crested Grebes, 61 Coot, 2 Common Buzzard and a Merlin.

Last but not least the Mediterranean Gull count today was 9 including 6 adults, a 2nd winter and 3 1st winter birds.

Pochards - Wykeham South Lake - Terry Hobson (30th Jan)

Monday 30th January 2017

Today a large count of 13 Mediterranean Gulls at Holbeck including 6 adults, 2x2ndWinter and 5x1stWinter and three of the adults were the ringed birds previously mentioned in this blog.

On The Mere the 7 Goosanders were still present and there was a single drake Goldeneye early on and 3 Pink-footed Geese later.

At Wykeham South Lake some of the species present today included 6 Great-crested Grebes, 23 Pochard, 7 Gadwall and 34 Tufted Duck.

Finally a Great Northern Diver was just outside the Harbour and c8 Common Scoter in South Bay.

♂ Goosander - The Mere - Tony Clarke

Sunday 29th January 2017

Let’s start today where we left off yesterday at The Mere where the 4♂3♀ Goosanders were still present but the Goldeneyes had increased to 3♂1♀ and there were also a Kingfisher and a Little Grebe on site.

At Long Nab there was some geese movement this morning, at 09.43 a White-fronted Goose went southwest with 7 Greylag Geese then at 10.23 16 White-fronted Geese went south. A Little Egret flew south at 10.03 and a Tundra Bean Goose, 3 Pink-footed Geese and 2 Greylag Geese were in a field SW of Crook Ness before flying west over Cromer Point Sewage Works at 12.10. Only 9 Shore Larks could be found in the field to the south of Crook Ness today and the Whooper Swan was still in the Scalby Lodge pond field.

At Scalby Mills today there was a Dipper on the Beck and a Chiffchaff and in North Bay 2 Red-throated Divers, 2 Common Scoter and 2 Mute Swans.

The Harbour/South Bay area was still holding on to 2 Black-necked Grebes, 2 Great Northern Divers and 2 Long-tailed Ducks and also 5 Common Scoter and a Mute Swan. Further south in Cornelian Bay we had a single Velvet Scoter, 10 Grey Plover, 9 Ringed Plover and a Mute Swan.

Further inland there were flocks of 50 and 20 Bramblings and a total of 350 Fieldfares at Wilton Heights and nearby at Ellerburn/Sand Dale 4 Willow Tits, 7 Marsh Tits, 4 Crossbills, 150+ Siskins, 4 Grey Wagtails and 17 Grey Herons. Also inland but a little to the northeast of Dalby Forest is Langdale Forest where the Great Grey Shrike was seen again, well but rather distantly.

Also today there were 30+ White-fronted Geese behind the smaller pond at Seamer Tip at 11.00.

Finally at Johnson’s Marsh during the day there were maximum counts of 12 Grey Herons, 96 Wigeon and 5 Lapwings.

Goldeneye - The Mere - Pauline Dent
Barn Owl - Johnson's Marsh - Chris Bell

Monday 30 January 2017

Saturday 28th January 2017

Rather surprisingly for a Saturday we didn’t get very much reported at all today.

Early morning on the eastern side of Seamer Tip pool there was a Short-eared Owl showing well and in the Harbour the Great Northern Diver and Black-necked Grebe were both still present.

The Whooper Swan was still present near Scalby Lodge pond; Jackson’s Bay had a Dunlin and 5 Ringed Plovers and at Scalby Mills there were 190 Wigeon and a Red-throated Diver.

Finally on The Mere today the 7 Goosanders were still present and had been joined by 2 drake Goldeneyes.

We've tried something new here by posting a video for the first time, there may be problems so just bare with us as it seems the video can not be viewed on mobile phones.

Stonechat - Royal Albert Drive - Chris Bell

Friday 27 January 2017

Friday 27th January 2017

In the Harbour today 2 Black-necked Grebes were seen again, the Red-breasted Merganser remained until about 12.45 when it was seen to fly off to the north and a Great-crested Grebe was outside the Harbour mouth. Nearby in South Bay the 2 Long-tailed Ducks were seen again and there were at least 9 Common Scoter while at Holbeck there were 9 unringed  Mediterranean Gulls including 6 adults and now 3 1st-winter birds.

At Long Nab today an Eider flew south and the Stonechat was still present.

On the River Hertford at Staxton Carr there was a Green Sandpiper and at Willerby Carr had 24 Whooper Swans, 5 Mute Swans and 2 Little Egrets both areas had good numbers of thrushes with 250+ Fieldfares and 200+ Redwings including 100 on the sports field in Staxton alone.

On the east side of Seamer Tip there was a mobile group of 15 Redpolls and 58 Golden Plovers flew west overhead.

Finally at Ellerburn in Dalby Forest a brief visit produced 40 Redpoll, 50+ Brambling, 12 Crossbills and a single Goshawk.

The following photograph illustrates nicely the differences between Shag (on left) and Cormorant.

Shag and Cormorant - Scarborough Harbour - Deb Schild

Thursday 26 January 2017

Thursday 26th January 2017

The 16 Shore Larks were still present in the field to the south of Crook Ness car park today and also in the neighbouring field a small flock of 28 Golden Plovers with 22 Lapwings.

In the Harbour today the Red-breasted Merganser was still present and a Black-necked Grebe continued its residency.

In the Seamer area there were 4 Pochard, a Pintail and a Goldeneye on Seamer Tip pool and in the field below 3 Pink-footed Geese and White-fronted Geese, 30 of which flew from here and were relocated feeding by Long Lane, Crossgates. Also 10 Golden Plover flew east over Seamer Tip pool.

At The Mere today there were now 7 Goosanders, 4 males and 3 females and at Holbeck at least 3 adult Mediterranean Gulls including a ringed bird, red PNN5, which originated in Poland.

Flying south past Castle Headland during the late morning were 3 Shoveler, 11 Wigeon, 7 Teal, 2 Mallard and 3 Greylag Geese.

Red-breasted Merganser - Scarborough Harbour - Steve Race

Wednesday 25 January 2017

Wednesday 25th January 2017

2 Waxwings were seen again today but this time by Chris Bradshaw outside PC World at 10.45 before flying off to the north.

The 16 Shore Larks were also seen again today in the field to the south of the Crook Ness car park.

There were at least 15 Bramblings at Long Nab and also 5 Snipe, 50 Reed Buntings and 25 Yellowhammers, another Brambling was seen in Barmoor Close, Scalby.

20 Barnacle Geese in a field by Wykeham South Lake and another in the field east of Seamer Carr Road where the White–fronted Goose flock was also feeding. Pink-footed Geese were on the move today with skeins of 140 heading north over the Harbour at 13.25 and 40 also heading north over Hutton Buscel at 14.25.

A single Jack Snipe was on the Taylor Way puddles, a Shelduck was at Seamer Tip pool and 12 Golden Plover were on Seamer Mead.

A Common Scoter was in North Bay and 19 were in South Bay, 10 Ringed Plovers were in Jackson’s Bay and the Red-breasted Merganser remained in the Harbour.

Also today there was a Chiffchaff and a Snipe at Cromer Point Pond and at Scalby Lodge Pond the Whooper Swan remained in the field and there were also 27 Curlew there.

Red-breasted Merganser - Scarborough Harbour - Steve Race
Barnacle Geese - Wykeham South Lake area - Terry Hobson

Tuesday 24th January 2017

The first news of the day concerned most people’s favourite winter species when 6 Waxwings were seen on Barmoor Lane, Scalby but unfortunately they didn’t hang around and flew off east at 10.30.Then two were seen by Steve Race outside B&Q at 12.55 and were present until 14.44 when they flew towards The Mere.

There was a new species in the Harbour today where a stunning male Red-breasted Merganser allowed some excellent views and pleased the photographers; there was also a single Black-necked Grebe and a Guillemot. In South Bay there was a Black-necked Grebe, a Red-throated Diver, a Guillemot, 2 Long-tailed Ducks, 7 Common Scoter and a Velvet Scoter. At the base of Holbeck Hill there was a pair of Stonechats and late afternoon there were 2 adult Mediterranean Gulls by Holbeck car park.

A single Black Redstart was seen along Royal Albert Drive in the usual place opposite the Royal Albert Café.

At Scalby Mills today with the 200 Wigeon there were 3 Gadwall and a Teal also just down the road the Whooper Swan was in Scalby Lodge Pond field.

Red-breasted Merganser (with Butterfish?) - Scarborough Harbour - Steve Mills

Waxwing - Outside B&Q - Steve Race

Red-breasted Merganser - Scarborough Harbour - Chris Bell

Red-breasted Merganser - Scarborough Harbour - Tony Clarke

Tuesday 24 January 2017

Monday 23rd January 2017

In the field by the junction of Meads Lane and Long Lane in Crossgates/Seamer the group of 50+ White-fronted Geese were present with 70+ Greylag Geese and 3 Pink-footed Geese early morning before being flushed by a lady on horseback. They all flew in the direction of Seamer Tip pool. Later, on that said pool there were 4 Gadwall, Wigeon, 2 Teal and the Scaup and nearby to the east of the road from the tip the c60 White-fronted Geese were present with 2 Pink-footed Geese and a Barnacle Goose.

At Wykeham South Lake there were 4 Egyptian Geese, 5 Great-crested Grebes, 6 Goldeneye, 2 Pochard and a ♂ Shoveler.

Flixton Carr had 14 Fieldfares and 6 Redwings while at Willerby Carr there was a Kingfisher, Little Egret, Green Sandpiper, Redshank, 86+ Fieldfares, 12 Redwings and 4 Mistle Thrushes.

Along Queen Margaret’s Road the 3 Pink-footed Geese were still with the Greylag Goose flock and down in the Harbour and South Bay today there were 2 Black-necked Grebes, a Great Northern Diver, 2 Long-tailed Ducks and at least 7 Common Scoter.

White-fronted Geese - Long Lane, Seamer/Crossgates - Terry Hobson

Sunday 22nd January 2017

Probably of most interest today were the two small flocks of Barnacle Geese seen in the area first was a group of 18 seen flying south at Long Nab by Nick Addey at 10.05, then over the Grand Hotel by Jim Middleton, at 10.18 they went over Knipe Point Drive seen by Tony Clarke and finally out of the area they were seen still heading south over Filey Bay at 10.45 by John Harwood. The second flock was 27 strong at Wykeham South Lake but they departed soon after their discovery WSW at 10.45, also on the lake were 7 Shoveler, 7 Goldeneye and 8 Great-crested Grebes.

Also today at Long Nab 3 Shelducks, a Common Scoter and 2 Red-throated Divers went north and 3 went south, there was a Stonechat still present and 16 Shore Larks were seen in the second field west of the Crook Ness car park.

The White-fronted Goose flock was seen at Burton Riggs at 08.30 and then later in the morning in the field by Long Lane in Seamer/Crossgates.

There were 11 Grey Herons and 93 Wigeon on Johnson’s Marsh and nearby the Whooper Swan was present all day in the field by the path to Scalby Lodge Pond.

In Langdale Forest there were 3 Stonechats at May Moss and a Goshawk and 14 Crossbills at Maw Rigg. In the Wykeham Forest area near Craddlegrip Wood there was a mixed flock of about 150 Yellowhammers, Reed Buntings, Chaffinches and Bramblings; 3 pairs of Bullfinches together in the forest; 3 male Bullfinches on Great Moor Road and 8 Siskins at the east end of the forest.

In Troutsdale there were 55 Mandarin Ducks and at Hackness 4 Mandarins and 3 Bramblings.

Finally at Scalby Mills this afternoon 3 adult and a 2nd winter Mediterranean Gulls including the Hungarian ringed H1N4 and the Belgian ringed 3LAN.

Cetaceans today included 2 Harbour Porpoise off Long Nab.

Barnacle Goose - Long Nab - Nick Addey
Mediterranean Gull H1N4 - Scalby Mills - Nick Addey
Mediterranean Gull 3LAN - Scalby Mills - Nick Addey

Sunday 22 January 2017

Saturday 21st January 2017

Hooray Waxwings are back in the news with 4 reported outside B&Q this morning and 2 in a garden on Stepney Drive. The Shore Larks were still present in the vicinity of Crook Ness but today only 17 were counted.

Whilst to the north of town the report from Long Nab today included a noisy White-fronted Goose going south at 07.54, 58 Red-throated Divers moving of which 35 went north and there were also 6 on the sea, 36 Common Scoter went north, 3 Shelduck and 93 Black-headed Gulls went south.

Moving south along the coast there were 2 Black Redstarts on Royal Albert Drive; a Red-throated Diver in North Bay; in the Harbour a Great Northern Diver, a Black-necked Grebe, a Guillemot and 2 Purple Sandpipers and in South Bay a Velvet Scoter, a Red-throated Diver and 4 Mediterranean Gulls.

In Langdale Forest the Great Grey Shrike was still at Maw Rigg and there were 9 Crossbills there as well.

A bit of late news concerns a Whooper Swan seen in the field by the access path to Scalby Lodge Pond.

Finally today there was a report of 2 White-beaked Dolphins at 15.55 off Marine Drive.

Whooper Swan - nr Scalby Lodge Pond - Pauline Dent

Friday 20th January 2017

Today let’s start with some news from a little further afield. A Green Sandpiper was at Charity Farm on Thornton Carrs with 50 Fieldfares and 15 Redwings in the area. At Wilton Heights there was quite a large mixed flock of passerines including 100+ Yellowhammers, 100+ Chaffinches and 50+ Bramblings who knows what might be with them.

The Scaup had relocated to Seamer Tip pool as had the Barnacle Goose and the White-fronted Goose flock was also seen here but had increased to 58. Earlier in the day this flock was also reported in a field at the junction of Long Lane and Meads Lane in Crossgates but at this time only 56 were present.

At Crook Ness the Shore Lark flock was still present in the field to the south of the car park but remarkably it had increased to 18 birds. Nearby at Long Nab a Snow Bunting flew north at 10.50, there was a Stonechat to the north of the Obs and 8 Red-throated Divers were on the sea. Further south at Scalby Mills the Wigeon flock was 250 today and there was a Yellow-legged Gull, and Cornelian Bay hosted a Great Northern Diver and 8 Grey Plover.

A cetacean was seen of Long Nab in the morning and was probably a Bottle-nosed Dolphin.

Friday 20 January 2017

Thursday 19th January 2017

Nothing staggering today but there were a lot of reports from many locations.

Early on there was a Whooper Swan on Johnson’s Marsh but unfortunately it didn’t stay for the day.

News from inland locations included the continued presence in Langdale Forest of the Great Grey Shrike at Maw Rigg along with 6 Crossbills; 2 Dippers were on the river at Hilla Green; 10 Goosanders, 2 Wigeon and a Pintail at Harwood Dale Lake and at Hackness there were 26 Mandarin Ducks with some of the males involved in courtship display. In the Seamer area the White-fronted Goose flock at the Tip pool had increased to 56 birds which is the second highest count for our area and also here a couple of Short-eared Owls performed well even though one hung around longer than the other. Just down the road at Burton Riggs yesterday’s Scaup was relocated and also here were a Barnacle Goose, a Pochard and a Wigeon.

Coastal locations still held on to the old favourites with 273 Wigeon at Scalby Mills; Black Redstart and Stonechat on Royal Albert Drive; 2 Great Northern Divers and 2 Black-necked Grebes in the Harbour; 2 Long-tailed Ducks, a Velvet Scoter and 9 Common Scoter in South Bay; 9 Mediterranean Gulls (2x1st winter, a 2nd winter and 6 adults) at Holbeck and in Cornelian Bay 7 Red-throated Divers, 8 Grey Plover and 6 Ringed Plovers. 

Whooper Swan - Johnson's Marsh - Terry Hobson

Whooper Swan - Johnson's Marsh - Nick Addey

Wednesday 18 January 2017

Wednesday 18th January 2017

At Long Nab today 2 Great Northern Divers flew north as did 2 (Dark-bellied) Brent Geese plus 35 Red-throated Divers, 8 Shelduck and 3 Pink-footed Geese whilst a Tundra Bean Goose flew to the south. There were also 13 Red-throated Divers on the sea some of which were regularly calling. Also in this area were a Lapland Bunting in the stubble field to the north of the obs and at Crook Ness the 16 Shore Larks were seen again in the field to the south but then flew to the one to the north.

2 Kingfishers were at Scalby Mills with a total of 17 Shags in North Bay, at least one Black Redstart and the Stonechat were still present on Royal Albert Drive and in the Harbour we had 2 Black-necked Grebes, a Great Northern Diver and a 1st winter Mediterranean Gull eating a crab on the North Pier.

There was a Great Northern Diver in South Bay and the 2 Long-tailed Ducks were still off Holbeck where 7 Mediterranean Gulls (5 adults, 2 1st winters) were also present.

The number of Goosanders at The Mere had increased to 7 (4♂, 3♀).

Other odds and sods today included the Velvet Scoter still in Cayton Bay, a Willow Tit at Hilla Green, 4 (3♂,1♀) Mandarin Ducks at Hackness Lake, a Shelduck at Jackson’s Bay and 2 Snipe at Cromer Point Pond.

Late news concerns a Scaup seen on Seamer Tip bridge pool.

Black Redstart - Royal Albert Drive - Chris Bull

Shore Lark - Crook Ness - Chris Bull

Velvet Scoter - Cayton Bay - Chris Bull

Tuesday 17th January 2017

The discovery of another Iceland Gull at Scalby Mills today by Tony Ford was a nice find and there was possibly a distant Glaucous Gull there early on. Later in the day there was a count of 311 Wigeon here.

The flock of 16 Shore Larks were seen again but this afternoon they were on the south side of Rocks Lane in the second field west of Cliff Top House.

The Harbour had the usual 2 Great Northern Divers and the Black-necked Grebe and round the corner on Albert Drive the 2 Black Redstarts were seen again.

2 Woodcocks and a Merlin were seen at Seamer Carr.

Potter Brompton Carr held 15 Siskins, 80+ Linnets, 31 Fieldfares and 12 Meadow Pipits plus a group of 20+ Pink-footed Geese flew over to the east. At East Heslerton Carr there were 40 Fieldfares, 25 Tedwings and 30 Tree Sparrows.

20 Siskins flew over Peasholm.

juvenile Iceland Gull - Scalby Mills - Steve Race

juvenile Iceland Gull - Scalby Mills - Steve Race

juvenile Iceland Gull - Scalby Mills - Steve Race

Tuesday 17 January 2017

Monday 16th January 2017

At Seamer Tip pool today there were 16 White-fronted Geese and a ♂ Goldeneye and nearby at Burton Riggs a Great-crested Grebe.

2♂1♀ Goosander and a Kingfisher were at The Mere, 3 Red-throated Divers off Scalby Mills, 3 Mediterranean Gulls at Holbeck and in the Harbour the 2 Great Northern Divers and a Black-necked Grebe remained faithful.

In Cornelian Bay there were 4 Grey Plovers and in the next bay south, Cayton Bay, the Velvet Scoter was seen again.

Mediterranean Gull 1st winter - Holbeck - Tony Clarke

Monday 16 January 2017

Sunday 15th January 2017

Perhaps the most interesting thing today was the rediscovery of 16 Shore Larks in the field to the south of Crook Ness; this is obviously the same flock that was last seen about a month ago. Also, nearby at Long Nab a Great Northern Diver went north at 08.35, 10 Red-throated Divers also went north as did 14 Common Scoter and there were a further 9 Red-throated Divers on the sea feeding.

At Scalby Mills a 1st winter Glaucous Gull was seen early on and then this or another was seen three times; once off the Harbour and then twice off Marine Drive, on the sea by a visiting birder and then drifting north close in at 13.15. Finally one was back at Scalby Mills in the mid-afternoon. Also seen here was a Ringed Plover and to the north there was a Dunlin in Jackson’s Bay.

In North Bay there were a Black-throated Diver, 2 Red-throated Divers and a female Common Scoter, on the southern side at least one Black Redstart and the Stonechat remained near the Albert Drive Café.

The Harbour still had 2 Great Northern Divers and a Black-necked Grebe that were still attracting quite a lot of visiting admirers.

Elsewhere in the area there were Pintail, 2 Wigeon and 2 Brambling at Harwood Dale Lake and 3 Red-throated Divers and 2 Grey Plovers in Cornelian Bay.

Shore Lark - Crook Ness - Nick Addey