Friday, May 10, 2019
Flamborough, 10th May 2019
It seems like a long time coming perhaps, but it only takes one day to put the joy back in East coast spring birding, and today was one of those days. Finally some promising conditions for drift migration elbowed out the cold northerlies, and after flipping an imaginary coin first thing, Flamborough got the nod and I started at Old Fall hedge and plantation. Immediately, bumping into Craig, pretty much the first birds to present themselves were a hedge-top Wryneck and a smart male Redstart; clearly it was going to be a fun session...
...and a fun session ensued. An hour or so later, and after checking the wood and the hedge pretty thoroughly, we'd logged another three Redstarts, a Spotted Flycatcher, lots of Sylvias and - arguably the highlight - no fewer than 50 Willow Warblers dashing among the emerging canopy and budding branches.
Moving on to South Landing, I parked up, took about twenty steps down the road to the beach and bumped into a bird hopping around on the double-yellows - Wryneck #2, this one fantastically accommodating, and a blast to hang around with for as long as a lack of disturbance allowed; so accommodating, in fact, that (after being flushed into the ravine) it returned to the exact same place just a few metres away just as Pearson Snr arrived.
A circuit of the hedgerows and woodland at South Landing produced another 25 Willow Warblers, six Redstarts, a Garden Warbler, 20 Blackcaps and seven Pied Flys - five of which were, wonderfully, contact-calling with each other in the very tops of the trees in the main wood.
From there, back up onto the outer head, where Craig had relocated the recently-arrived (but elusive) Woodchat Shrike - a stroll around the southern edge of the Gorse Field and there it was, again very accommodating, along with another two Redstarts and three Wheatears. A sunny, relaxed, bird-filled spring morning in a beautiful place - that'll do nicely.