Tuesday 30 January 2018

Monday 29 January 2018

The Tundra Bean Goose was still in the field to the east of Seamer Tip pool with 2 Pink-footed Geese until 09.40 and also in the area were a Common Snipe and a Jack Snipe. The Geese then spent the rest of the day between here and the nearby lake at Burton Riggs.

The 3 Ruff were still on Folkton Carr and between here and Flixton Carr we had two flocks of Lapwings (one of c1000 and one of c1500), two flocks of c1000 Fieldfares with a few Redwings, a Peregrine and a Kingfisher from Folkton bridge.

In Langdale Forest the raptors included a Common Buzzard, a ♂ Goshawk and 2 Sparrowhawks and there were a few small groups of Crossbills with a maximum of 7 in one group.

Sightings from other areas today included a ♀ Common Scoter in South Bay; a Little Owl at Hutton Buscel; a Great White Egret flew west over Yedingham at about 13.45; the Ring Ouzel, 3 Hawfinches and 6 Bullfinches at Brompton-by-Sawdon and at Hilla Green 2 pairs of Mandarin Ducks, 3 Dippers, a ♂ Grey Wagtail and 2 probable Hawfinches seen briefly in flight.

female Bullfinch - Brompton-by-Sawdon - Terry Hobson
male Ring Ouzel - Brompton-by-Sawdon - Terry Hobson
Tundra Bean, Greylag & Pink-footed Geese - Burton Riggs - Kevin Groocock

Monday 29 January 2018

Sunday 28th January 2018

A nice discovery late this morning was a 1st winter Iceland Gull in the flooded field to the south of the large Seamer Tip pool but unfortunately it departed just before people arrived and was only seen by the finders. Nearby in the field to the east of Seamer Tip pool there was a Tundra Bean Goose, presumably the one seen a few days ago on Cayton Carr, with a Pink-footed Goose and 17 Greylag Geese, on the pool a couple of female Shovelers were in among the resident Mallards. Nearby on Burton Riggs a Barnacle Goose was with 165 Greylag Geese and 45 Canada Geese and at Cayton Carr about 300 Fieldfares, 28 Golden Plovers and a Ruff.

Brompton-by-Sawdon is continuing to attract visitors and not surprisingly because both the Ring Ouzel and the Hawfinches are still present and today the largest number of the latter were reported with 15 being seen.

On Johnson’s Marsh today there were 32 Teal, 20 Wigeon, a Tufted Duck and 9 Curlew and at Scalby Mills 264 Wigeon, 96 Redshanks, 7 Purple Sandpipers, 2 Dunlin, 13 Ringed Plovers and 7 Red-throated Divers.

Other reports today included a Great Northern Diver in Cornelian Bay, single Little Egrets were on Cayton Carr and by Folkton Bridge, 8 Goosanders on Seamer Road Mere and the overwintering Whimbrel was seen again in Burniston Bay.

Tundra Bean Goose - east of Seamer Tip Pool - Steve Wignill
1st winter Iceland Gull - south of Seamer Tip Pool - Steve Wignill
Peregrine with Wigeon - Cayton Carr - John Harwood
Kingfisher - Peasholm Park - Stuart Baines

Saturday 27th January 2018

Out on Cayton Carr this morning 3 Ruff and 800+ Lapwings; a Snow Bunting was in the rape field 50 metres north of the Obs at Long Nab; in town a female type Black Redstart was briefly on the roof of Barclays Bank at 09.10 before flying off in the direction of South Bay, a 2nd winter Mediterranean Gull was at Scalby Mills and a drake Eider flew south past Marine Drive.

The survey at Potter Brompton Carr this morning produced 12 Whooper Swans (5 ads, 7 juvs), 25 Pink-footed Geese, 95 Greylag Geese, 4 Pintail, 5 Shoveler, 276 Wigeon (which is a record count for the site, the previous maximum being 179 in 2013), a Shelduck, a Teal, 30 Golden Plover and 80+ Lapwings.

Mid-morning an interesting discovery was a flock of 13 Waxwings that flew past Pets At Home towards B&Q but despite a good search they were not relocated along Seamer Road. A Great White Egret was seen flying over Long Causeway to the west of Wykeham Lakes at 09.15 this morning and in Thornton-le-Dale 6 Hawfinches were in the churchyard/Dog Kennel Lane areas.

A single Crossbill was seen in Harwood Dale Forest, 13 Grey Herons were on Johnson’s Marsh and finally today an Eider, 2 Common Scoter, 2 Teal, 3 Kittiwakes and 2 Razorbills went south at Long Nab.

Friday 26th January 2018

At Brompton-by-Sawdon today early morning a distant Red Kite was heading east and later in the day there were 10 Hawfinches behind the churchyard and the Ring Ouzel was in the usual fields opposite the church. At Thornton-le-Dale the other group of local Hawfinches were still present and today 6 were seen in the churchyard and two in a private garden.

On the edge of Wykeham Forest above Wrench Green there were 3 Crossbills and 2 Willow Tits whilst nearby at Hilla Green a Dipper, a Brambling and a Mandarin Duck entertained another observer.

On Seamer Road Mere at least 9 Goosanders, 6 of which were drakes, and a pair of the same sere on Throxenby Mere. A Great White Egret was reported from Wykeham South Lake at 14.30 and it or possibly a second bird was at Yedingham near Stockhills Farm at 14.50.

Scalby Mills was still rather quiet with 320 Black-headed Gulls, a Mediterranean Gull,16 Common Gulls, 169 Wigeon, 51 Redshank and 36 Oystercatchers plus a female Goosander flew north offshore.

In Old Town about 900 Starlings came in to roost this evening and on Royal Albert Drive a pair of Stonechats were on the concrete sea defences.

Saturday 27 January 2018

Thursday 25th January 2018

5 pairs of Goosander were on The Mere and 2♂1♀ were on Throxenby Mere where there were also 2 pairs of Tufted Ducks. On Hackness Lake we had 3 Mandarin Ducks, 3 Tufted Ducks and a Coot, so continuing with the waterfowl theme on Harwood Dale Lake a pair of Mandarins, a Shelduck, 2♀Goosanders, 4 Wigeon and c25 Teal; an Eider feeding on the sea off the Holbeck Car Park and at Wykeham South Lake 3 Shelduck, a ♂Pintail and 100+ Wigeon.

At Brompton-by-Sawdon the Ring Ouzel was still in the fields opposite the Church and at least 3 Hawfinches were seen here today and a bit further out of town at Thornton-le-Dale 5+ Hawfinches were reported around the churchyard.

Other sightings today included a Jack Snipe near Seamer Tip, 5+ Mediterranean Gulls at Holbeck and 350 Fieldfares on Willerby Carr.

Hawfinch - Brompton-by-Sawdon - Rose Habberley

Friday 26 January 2018

Wednesday 24th January 2018

The only news received today came in after dark and concerned an Asio Owl sp. seen over the A64 at 19.40 coming from the general direction of Burton Riggs.

Tuesday 23rd January 2018

The survey at Potter Brompton Carr produced 10 Whooper Swans (4 adults, 6 juveniles), 2 White-fronted Geese, 2 Pink-footed Geese, 3 Pintail, 7 Shoveler, 181 Wigeon, 8 Teal and 97 Lapwings.

The Ring Ouzel was present for another day in the fields opposite Brompton-by-Sawdon Church, the Hawfinches were also still being seen with 4+ in the morning and then 10 flying east at 13.10 and 6 Yellowhammers were in a field southwest of the Church at 14.40.

Just 2 Hawfinches seen today in Thornton-le-Dale in a mixed finch flock feeding in the garden of one of our members first thing this morning.

Peasholm Park Lake was being drained today but during the process 3 Goosander, 3 Grey Herons, a Kingfisher and a Grey Wagtail were all observed and on Throxenby Mere there were also 3 Goosander and a total of 43 Mallards.

Hawfinch - Thornton-le-Dale - Graham Sigsworth

Monday 22nd January 2018

The 4 Waxwings were still present outside 44 Scalby Mills Road first thing this morning but flew off about 09.30. They were back in the area at 11.30 but at 14.05 a local feline decided that Waxwings were good sport and duly dispatched one of them. The other three fortunately escaped the claws but unsurprisingly were not seen again in this area.

95 Pink-footed Geese flew south over the sea at Long Nab at 10.00 and 22 Red-throated Divers were noted going north (+1 S), also in the area today were 53 Golden Plover, 9 Snipe, 12 Curlew, 160 Skylarks, 14 Fieldfares, a Stonechat and a Reed Bunting.

Hawfinches were reported from both Thornton-le-Dale and Brompton-by-Sawdon with 6+ in the churchyard Yews of the former and 3+ at the latter location, the Ring Ouzel was also still present in the fields opposite All Saints Church, Brompton.

Also today c60 Crossbills at Haygate in Dalby Forest; a Little Egret flew west over Seamer village at 14.10; at Wykeham South Lake the waterfowl included 29 Gadwall, 140 Teal, 5 Shoveler and 3 Goldeneye and a large count of 285 Pied Wagtails coming in to roost at the Scarborough Waste Water Treatment Works off Burniston Road this evening (no public access to this area).

The Waxwing Murderer - Steve Race
Waxwing - Scalby Mills Road - Steve Race

Ring Ouzel - Brompton-by-Sawdon - Nick Addey

Monday 22 January 2018

Sunday 21st January 2018

Waxwings were located in a different area again today and this time there were 4 of them outside 44 Scalby Mills Road, just down the road there were 2 female Goosanders on Scalby Beck and at Scalby Mills a female Goosander was feeding under the footbridge before moving out to sea and there were 303 Wigeon, 7 Greylag Geese flew south and a total of 8 Red-throated Divers were moving north.

WeBS counts today included 75 Greylag Geese, 72 Canada Geese, 46 Mallard, 10 Tufted Duck, 2 Pochard and a single Coot at Burton Riggs and the highlights at a predominantly frozen Seamer Road Mere included a Pochard and a Water Rail. The Harbour area was fairly quiet again but 4 Shags were off the entrance and a few Mediterranean Gulls were around the Holbeck Car Park.

Wykeham South Lake today had the Great White Egret on the west bank for some of the afternoon plus 3 Goldeneye, 2 Pochard, 10 Tufted Ducks, 138 Teal, 192 Wigeon, 11 Shoveler, 16 Gadwall, 24 Mallard, 2 Little Grebes, 5 Great Crested Grebes and 28 Coot.

At Thornton-le-Dale there were 12 Hawfinches around the churchyard and Church Lane area but no news today from Brompton-by-Sawdon. On Cayton Carr we had 22 very mobile White-fronted Geese; a Short-eared Owl was around the mound north of Seamer Tip pool; a Kingfisher and a Dipper were seen in Peasholm Glen; 2 Stonechats were at Cromer Point and the waders in Jackson’s Bay included 13 Ringed Plover, a Sanderling and 4 Dunlin.

Last but not least the Long Nab area produced a Pink-footed Goose that flew south with 75 Canada Geese and was then seen on Johnson’s Marsh, 14 Common Scoter (S), 57 Red-throated Divers (12 S, 45 N) and 2 argentatus Herring Gulls (S) also in the area were 32 Golden Plover and 120 Skylarks.

Waxwings - Scalby Mills Road - Alex Meek

Waxwings - Scalby Mills Road - Nick Addey

Saturday 20th January 2018

3 Waxwings were found on Newlands Park Grove this morning, but they didn’t hang around for very long and were not seen by anyone except the finder. They were heard at the corner of Newlands Park Grove and Cleveland Avenue at 10.30ish but were not reported after this at all. Another new discovery today was a Glaucous Gull in a field next to Burton Riggs at 12.00.

26 White-fronted Geese were on Cayton Carr this morning, but they flew east at 10.27, also in the area were a Ruff, 2 Peregrines and a Stonechat.

In Brompton-by-Sawdon the Ring Ouzel was again in the field opposite the Church and there were 6-8 Hawfinches still in the area. In Thornton-le-Dale 9 Hawfinches in the churchyard with 2 on Dog Kennel Lane and a Kingfisher and Grey Wagtail near the Mill.

The South Bay gull roost this evening held 6 Mediterranean Gulls (5 adults and a 2nd winter), 580 Black-headed Gulls, 20 Common Gulls and 1100 Herring Gulls with a Great Crested Grebe and 2 Guillemots also in the bay.

Hawfinches - Brompton-by-Sawdon - John Harwood
Waxwing - Newlands Park Grove - Louise Young
Ring Ouzel - Brompton-by-Sawdon - John Harwood

Friday 19th January 2018

Wykeham South Lake was very quiet early with just 7 Great Crested Grebes, 5 Goldeneye, a Gadwall and a Barn Owl but later in the day the Great White Egret was seen again here; at Thornton-le-Dale there were 2 Hawfinches on Dog Kennel Lane with a third in the main Car Park and one on Church Lane also a Kingfisher on the stream and 30 Siskins in the Car Park and at Brompton-by-Sawdon the Ring Ouzel was seen again but there were only a few badly-behaved Hawfinches.

In town a very mobile female Black Redstart was seen around the Spa Bridge/Rotunda Museum area but could not be located again soon after its discovery. The Wetland Bird Survey (Webs) count between the Spa Bridge and Cornelian Bay produced 37 Oystercatchers, 4 Ringed Plovers, 3 Grey Plovers, 14 Purple Sandpipers, 67 Turnstones, 29 Redshank and 5 Curlew and in Cornelian Bay a Great Northern Diver was feeding while off Black Rocks there were 3+ Red-throated Divers. During the day at total of at least 16 Mediterranean Gulls were counted at Holbeck including 10 adults, 2x 1st winter and 4x 2nd winter.

There was a Great Crested Grebe in the South Bay this evening when the gull roost consisted of 250 Black-headed Gulls, 6 Mediterranean Gulls and 800 Herring Gulls while 1000+ Starlings roosted in the Old Town. Finally today there were large numbers of Fieldfares and Redwings across Folkton and Cayton Carrs and also 3 Ruff and c30 Golden Plovers.

Ring Ouzel - Brompton-by-Sawdon - Mark Pearson

Thursday 18th January 2018

A female Hen Harrier was chasing a large flock of Fieldfares and Redwings inland of Jackson’s Bay at 09.30 but not seen subsequently. At Cromer Point a flock of 64 Golden Plovers were seen circling, viewed from Scalby Nab.

At Wykeham South Lake this morning 9 Great Crested Grebes, 2 Little Grebes, 7 Goldeneye, a Barn Owl and small groups of Fieldfares were moving through the area; 7 Hawfinches were seen by the Church at Brompton-by-Sawdon but the Ring Ouzel was not reported today and at Ellerburn there were 2 Hawfinches between the Fish Farm and Papermill Lake plus 2 Grey Wagtails and a Kingfisher.

At Scalby Mills today we had a notable increase in Common Gulls with 95 being present (compared to 2 yesterday) and a further 25 flew north, 2 Mediterranean Gulls and 2 Purple Sandpipers were also present and moving offshore there were 17 Red-throated Divers (12 N, 5 S) and a Kittiwake (N). Finally at the north end of Valley Bridge there were 4 Redwings among many Blackbirds gorging themselves on berries.

Thursday 18 January 2018

Wednesday 17th January 2018

The Tundra Bean Goose appeared back on Cayton Carr briefly but flew off to the west at 09.30 and there were 5 Little Egrets also in the area.

Scalby Mills was “very quiet” with c250 Wigeon and an argentatus Herring Gull and moving south off shore were a Great Northern Diver, 11 Red-throated Divers (2 N), 3 Common Scoter and a Kittiwake.

A Red Kite flew east over Low Marishes at 13.50; a pair of Shovelers were on Seamer Tip pool and there were 9 Hawfinches behind Brompton Church early morning.

Tuesday 16th January 2018

A nice discovery this afternoon on Cayton Carr was a small group of Geese, only six birds but three different species, 3 Pink-footed Geese, 2 White-fronted Geese and a single Tundra Bean Goose.

At Brompton-by-Sawdon the Ring Ouzel was still present but at times it was ranging more widely than before and was seen this afternoon in the sheep field by West End Farm also in Brompton there were at least 12 Hawfinches seen today around the churchyard.

At Wykeham South Lake the Great White Egret was seen again and also a pair of Pintail, 3 Goldeneye and 7 Great Crested Grebes.

Hawfinches - Brompton-by-Sawdon - John Hume

Tundra Bean Goose - Cayton Carr - Tony Clarke

Monday 15th January 2018

On The Mere this morning 12 Goosanders, 48 Tufted Duck, 2 Little Grebes and a Water Rail also 29 Moorhen, 48 Mute Swans and 12 Bullfinches.

On Folkton Carr today 6 Little Egrets, a Kingfisher, 1900+ Lapwings, a maximum 170+ Golden Plover and a male Peregrine.

A single Fieldfare was at St. Mary’s Church during the afternoon.

It has been brought to our attention that the Ring Ouzel currently around Brompton-by-Sawdon was first seen distantly on the 7th January.

Wednesday 17 January 2018

Sunday 14th January 2018

The biggest surprise of the winter so far was the discovery today at Brompton-by-Sawdon of a ♂ Ring Ouzel by John Harwood in the paddock opposite the churchyard at 11.30. The bird remained in the area for the rest of the day but was often distant and difficult to locate, this is the first winter record for the Scarborough area of this species as it was for many, if not all, of the observers who visited the area this afternoon. Whilst discussing the Brompton area the Hawfinches were showing frequently again today but as on previous days the views were mostly distant in the trees behind the church and the light was not good for the many who were after photographs. A maximum of 12 birds were seen in the area today, the highest number seen here so far during the current national invasion by this species. Also around Brompton today there was a mixed flock of about 100 Fieldfares and Redwings when the Ouzel was first discovered but they seemed to move on quite quickly and also during the afternoon three Common Buzzards performed gracefully low over the churchyard. At Thornton-le-Dale another Hawfinch was seen in the usual area around Rectory Lane.

At Wykeham South Lake a Great White Egret dropped in behind the island at 11.45 and there were also 150+ Wigeon, 2 Goldeneye, a Pochard, a ♀ Shoveler and 6 Great Crested Grebes.

Back in Scarborough there were 2 Waxwings briefly in a Stepney Drive garden at 14.40 and in Cornelian Bay 3 Red-throated Divers, a Great Crested Grebe and an Eider then at 12.50 30 White-fronted Geese flew over to the south also a Common Snipe and a Jack Snipe were flushed from the large ploughed field.

At Long Nab today the overwintering Whimbrel appeared again on the rocks below the Obs, a Great Skua flew south at 10.13 and an adult Mediterranean Gull also flew south here. At Johnson’s Marsh there were 42 Teal and 3 Wigeon whilst at Scalby Mills there was a ♂ Common Scoter. In the Folkton Carr area today we had 1460 Lapwings, 600 Starlings, a few Golden Plovers and a Stonechat, also briefly 33 White-fronted Geese were seen here before being flushed when they flew in the direction of Flotmanby Carr but could not be relocated in the remaining daylight.

Finally today c10 Brambling were with a mixed flock of Linnets and Chaffinches and there were also about 200 Fieldfares in the stubble fields near to Wilton Heights Quarry.

Ring Ouzel - Brompton-by-Sawdon - John Harwood

Hawfinch - Brompton-by-Sawdon - John Harwood

Saturday 13th January 2018

The 2 Waxwings were present first thing this morning outside B&Q but they disappeared about 09.15 and to my knowledge were not seen subsequently also behind B&Q on The Mere there were 8 Goosanders (3♂ and 5♀). On the coast at the Holbeck Car Park the Mediterranean Gulls were seen again with at least 5 birds (4 adults and a 1st winter) being recorded.

Both groups of Hawfinches were also seen again today with at least six together near to the churchyard at Brompton-by-Sawdon and 2 or 3 were seen at various locations in Thornton-le-Dale.

At Wykeham South Lake today 8 Great Crested Grebes, 3 Little Grebes, 20 Teal, 5 Wigeon, 8 Tufted Ducks, Goldeneye and 43 Coot; nearby at the entrance to the Saint Helens Caravan Site in Wykeham Village there was a single flock of 20 Bullfinches in one tight group feeding on the ground. This equals the largest group seen in our area, 20 at Wykeham Forest on 14 July 2008.

55 Redshanks were at Scalby Mills and a pair of Gadwall flew south; 42 Purple Sandpipers, 60 Turnstone and a couple of Guillemots were around the Harbour; off Marine Drive a single Red-throated Diver plus another Guillemot and a Goldeneye flew north and at Holbeck at least 5 Mediterranean Gulls (4 adults and a 1st winter).

Stonechat - Marine Drive - Stuart Baines

Friday 12th January 2018

The Waxwings at B&Q remained faithful to this location for most of the day and were joined briefly by a third bird, a single was also seen in a Londesborough Road garden. On The Mere first thing there were 9 Goosanders (4♂and 5♀) but one male departed before 09.00, the rest of the group remained all day and also seen here were 4 Mediterranean Gulls (2 adults and 2 1st winter).

At Brompton-by-Sawdon 6/8 Hawfinches flew north over the churchyard at 15.10, 4 Little Grebes and 6 Tufted Duck were on the pond with 4 Mistle Thrushes nearby and further along the A170 at Thornton-le-Dale 2 of the Hawfinches there were seen on South Lane.

Seamer Tip pool had two Pink-footed Geese in with the Greylags, at Hackness there were 12 Redpolls sp. of which 9 flew south and 50+ Siskins also flew south, 2 Pale-bellied Brent Geese flew south at Jackson’s Bay at 13.30 and at Scalby Mills there were 2 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 120 Wigeon, a Teal, 2 Red-throated Divers and a ♂ Common Scoter.

Finally, today at Potter Brompton Carr there were 590 Lapwings, a Shoveler, 10 Wigeon, 8 Teal and a Barn Owl.

Waxwing - outside B&Q - Jan and Gary Powell
Waxwing - outside B&Q - Tony Clarke

Thursday 11th January 2018

The 2 Waxwings spent their third day feeding on the cotoneaster berries between the B&Q car park and the A64 often allowing close approach by both the observers and the photographers although some knowledge of field craft would have helped some people get some better results and disturbed the birds less.

At Brompton-by-Sawdon 6 Hawfinches were seen this afternoon in the tree tops behind the church but no news today of the birds in Thornton-le-Dale.

At other locations around the town today we had 5♂ Goosanders on Throxenby Mere; 40+ Goldfinches in Old Town; a Red-throated Diver in South Bay; Great Crested Grebe and 2 Pink-footed Geese at Burton Riggs; 2♂and a ♀Goosander on Seamer Road Mere; 4 adult Mediterranean Gulls on the Holbeck roof tops; 3 Shoveler (♂and 2♀), 8 Gadwall and a ♀Goldeneye on Seamer Tip pool and a pair of Stonechats by post 25 this afternoon.

Waxwings - outside B&Q - Gary Fletcher

Waxwing - outside B&Q - Steve Race

Tuesday 16 January 2018

Wednesday 10th January 2018

The 2 Waxwings spent their third day feeding on the cotoneaster berries between the B&Q car park and the A64 often allowing close approach by both the observers and the photographers although some knowledge of field craft would have helped some people get some better results and disturbed the birds less.

At Brompton-by-Sawdon 6 Hawfinches were seen this afternoon in the tree tops behind the church but no news today of the birds in Thornton-le-Dale.

At other locations around the town today we had 5♂ Goosanders on Throxenby Mere; 40+ Goldfinches in Old Town; a Red-throated Diver in South Bay; Great Crested Grebe and 2 Pink-footed Geese at Burton Riggs; 2♂and a ♀Goosander on Seamer Road Mere; 4 adult Mediterranean Gulls on the Holbeck roof tops; 3 Shoveler (♂and 2♀), 8 Gadwall and a ♀Goldeneye on Seamer Tip pool and a pair of Stonechats by post 25 this afternoon.

Eider - Harbour Mouth - Andy Hood

Waxwing - outside B&Q - Kevin Groocock

Waxwing - outside B&Q - Stuart Baines

Tuesday 9th January 2018

Two Waxwings were discovered today at the front of B&Q on Seamer Road at 13.50 this afternoon, they were perching in the trees along the A64 and flying down to the low vegetation between the car park and the pavement where they were feeding on contoneaster berries. The birds were still present at 15.00 but that is the last news that was received.

Some of the Hawfinches were seen this morning at Brompton churchyard with three birds being reported and nearby a Great White Egret was seen along Sherburn Cut.

Early morning a ♂ Goosander was seen flying north out of the Harbour and later in the day a ♂ Eider was off the Harbour mouth; 2 adult Mediterranean Gulls were on the rocks below Holbeck and this evening a pair of Tawny Owls were calling in Peasholm Glen.

Tuesday 9 January 2018

Monday 8th January 2018

On Willerby Carr this morning there were c400 Fieldfares with a few Redwings and Mistle Thrushes plus Little Egret, Little Grebe and 2 Kingfishers; at Long Nab the highlights included an adult Mediterranean Gull heading south and going north were a Common Scoter and 4 Wigeon; 12 Goosanders were on Throxenby Mere today with another 2 present on The Mere where there were also 55 Tufted Ducks, 48 Mute Swans, 2 Little Grebes and an adult Mediterranean Gull.

The Brompton churchyard Hawfinches caused a bit of a stir today when armed police were called to deal with a person in camouflage gear with a gun!! Actually it was a birder with a long lens so be careful where you point your cameras. A total of six birds were seen today around lunch time and one was seen nearby in Sawdon, very briefly, where there were also c100 mixed Fieldfares and Redwings and a single male Brambling. The Hawfinches at Thornton-le-Dale were also seen this morning but I have no details as to how many were present.

At Flixton Carr we had 6 Little Grebes, 10 Golden Plover, 50 Fieldfares, 70 Lapwings and 2 Common Buzzards and nearby on Folkton Carr 103 Golden Plover, 447 Lapwings 3 Dunlin, 5 Fieldfare and a Redwing. Finally a Pink-footed Goose and 4 Shoveler were seen on Seamer Tip pool.

Hawfinches - Brompton-by-Sawdon - Chris Bell
Pink-footed Goose - Seamer Tip Pool - Chris Bull

Monday 8 January 2018

Sunday 7th January 2018

The team in the Michael Clegg memorial bird race managed an impressive 91 species, a great total considering how quiet things are in our area at the moment, well done guys.

The highlights in the area today were again headed by the two groups of Hawfinches at Brompton-by-Sawdon and Thornton-le-Dale. At Brompton the maximum count in the churchyard today was 6 and at Thornton one was seen by the large car park, 3 along Rectory Lane and 7 in the churchyard. Also in Thornton today there was a Grey Wagtail on the the stream and the Green Sandpiper was still on Thornton Carr.

At the Mere today only 2♂ Goosanders could be located and there was a 2nd winter Mediterranean Gull on the jetty by the cafĂ©; 5♂ Goosanders were on Throxenby Mere; a Great Crested Grebe was off the lighthouse pier early morning and 2♂ Eider were off the harbour mouth early afternoon. 6 Eiders were seen flying north off Marine Drive this afternoon and a further 18 were seen flying north off Scalby Mills.

A Whooper Swan was at Wykeham South Lake; 22 Fieldfares in a field opposite Pinewood Park entrance; at Long Nab today 3 Red-throated Divers,, Common Gull, 2 Snipe, a female Stonechat, 30 Fieldfares and about 60 Chaffinches; the Shelduck was still on Rudda Road Flash and 30+ Crossbills and a few Bramblings over Highwood Brow early this morning.

Also today 2 Jack Snipe and 4 Snipe in the field behind Cornelian Bay; a Barnacle Goose and 6 Pochard at Burton Riggs; 50+ Purple Sandpipers roosting on the East Pier and finally 2 Barn Owls and a Water Rail from Flixton Carr bridge this evening.

Hawfinch - Brompton churchyard - Mike Randall
Mediterranean Gull - Holbeck - Chris Bell
Purple Sandpiper - Scarborough Harbour - Chris Bell

Saturday 6 January 2018

Saturday 6th January 2018

By now regular readers of this blog will be aware of my fondness for Waxwings so I am very pleased to announce the first of the winter in Scarborough on the corner of Curlew Drive and Heron Lane, Crossgates at 15.30 but unfortunately it didn’t hang around for long.

The two groups of Hawfinches continued to attract admirers with 7 being seen in Thornton-le-Dale today and 8 around the churchyard at Brompton putting on a good show at times, please park sensibly at both locations to avoid annoying the locals.

The only other news today concerned a Little Egret by Folkton Sewage Works and a Jack Snipe on Taylor Way.
Hawfinch - Brompton-by-Sawdon - Tony Clarke
Hawfinch - Thornton-le-Dale - Graham Sigsworth

Friday 5th January 2018

Hawfinches were again the main talking point in the area with at least 3 seen on a few occasions at the junction of Dog Kennel Lane and Rectory Lane, a single bird was seen above the big car park also in Thornton-le-Dale and about 7 miles away in Brompton Churchyard 3 more were located. As suggested by one of our members “keep checking your churchyards”, they have now been seen in three in our area (Ellerburn, Thornton and Brompton).

The count from Scalby Mills today included 520+ Wigeon, 10 Teal, 13 Ringed Plover, 4 Dunlin, a Purple Sandpiper and 2 Mediterranean Gulls, moving on the sea there were 55 Red-throated Divers (3 S, 52 N) plus a drake Goldeneye, 2 Common Scoter and 2 Pink-footed Geese (all N) and on the other side of North Bay there were 23 Fulmars on the Castle Cliffs. On The Mere today we had a record equalling count of 16 Goosander plus 45 Tufted Ducks and 41 Mute Swans.

8 Fieldfares came in off the sea along Marine Drive; 18 Teal were on Johnson’s Marsh; a Shelduck was at Rudda Road Flash and at Harwood Dale Lake a Mute Swan, 9 Wigeon, and c160 Lapwings.
Finally the Starlings were still putting on a display over Old Town this evening with a few Pigeons joining in on the fun!!

Hawfinch - Thornton-le-Dale - Kevin Groocock