Champions of the Flyway!

Saturday, October 16, 2021

Autumn Migration Days 2021 - unbeatable?

Q: What do Red-flanked Bluetail, Black-browed Albatross, Glossy Ibis, Taiga Flycatcher, migrating flocks of Whoopers and Pink-feet, Spotted Redshank, Yellow-browed Warblers, falls of thrushes and Wheatears, big movements of finches, pipits and larks, Sooty Shearwaters and Pomarine Skuas, and frolicking pods of Bottlenose Dolphins have in common?

A: They've all been enjoyed on our Yorkshire Coast Nature Migration Specials at Flamborough in the last month.....
Black-browed Albatross, Bempton - when it returned at the end of June, who would've bet it'd have (just) hung on in time for a mid-September Migration Special?

What a roll we're on.....! I've loved delivering our Autumn Migration Specials for several years now, and I have to say, we always provide unique and varied days for our clientele - of whom there are no more than four on every day, to ensure a top quality experience - and while there's always the option of us going further afield, we're usually centred on and around the Great White Cape of Flamborough Head.

Why? Well, because it always seems to provide. Previous years have been fantastic, with a perfect mix of migration spectacles, rare and scarce migrants, and unique bird and wildlife adventures; this season, however, has been borderline ridiculous. It seems, even with the theoretically more productive option of casting the net wider to incorporate a variety of alternative local sites, that taking it slowly and just absorbing everything Flamborough wants to give us is the winning formula.

Putting us in the right places at the right times is part of my job, and while just enjoying what's happening around us (and incorporating local goodies) is our MO, I have to say, when our group finds include the only mainland UK Bluetail this year and Flamborough's third Glossy Ibis, they're cherries on an already very tasty cake.
Is there a more evocative sign of autumn east coast migration than the beautiful tootin' of an incomong Whooper flock?

It's gratifying that they book up so far in advance, and it's even more gratifying that clients return time and time again - a testament to the fact that, despite often covering the same areas, no two days are ever the same. Roll on next year (dates to follow on the YCN website soon), but now, down the coast and to Spurn for a week's guiding .....