Posts Tagged ‘Yorkshire


Brows and blows

After a busy few months Tania and I wanted to get away for a few days. So we made a plan. First stop Bempton to see the Black-browed Albatross. I’d seen the Sula Sgeir bird a decade or more ago but how could you say no to an Albatross in British waters. You just ‘have’ to go and see it. They are the bees knees of seabirds. A thought not shared by the Gannets who didn’t take to their larger cousin at all. He ousted a few off the cliffs to crash land among them. Tania had great views of the bird as she looked down on the bird circling below her.

First part of the plan completed we thought we’d carry on North and visit Kinghorn. Now this is the second time this year I’ve called at this pretty village just over the Forth from Edinburgh. I paid a visit at the end of May. The idea then was to see if the guests on the UK Mammal Tour could add Sei Whale to their lists. Despite it’s rarity in UK waters there had been one kicking around in the Firth of Forth for a few weeks. Sadly it wasn’t to be as the whale didn’t play ball. However, Tania and I thought it would be worth a revisit this week as the Sei Whale was still being seen with some regularity. It took some time, but eventually the third largest animal on the planet graced us with a ‘swim-past’. In fact two; once going up river and then a second as it returned East. Thanks to Ronnie Mackie for his invaluable help and great company in seeking out this addition to our British mammal list. The last time I saw one of these creatures it was amid the clear waters of a Chilean Fjord on the day Tania and I first met; a long way from a small seaside town on the East coast of Scotland.


The Holy Grail

Siberian Accentors have been occurring throughout Europe in small numbers this Autumn. It was almost inevitable one would turn up in the Northern Isles. When one was found on Shetland I was pleased for the people that found it; finding a first for Britain must be a wonderful feeling. However I was tinged with a little sadness that I could not get to see it. So it was with some relief that when I was driving back from our trip to Scillies on Thursday I heard one had been located on the Spurn peninsula in Yorkshire. All it had to do was stop until the next day and I could give myself a quick turnaround and get to see it on Friday morning.

I arrived at Easington in Yorkshire after a four hour drive to find a tame, Siberian vagrant that had drifted down on easterlies feeding avidly on moss covered tarmac at no more than three metres distance. I was completely blown away. The visualisation of an enigma. The Holy grail of bird watching.



Good numbers

Although Tree Sparrows aren’t rare in Norfolk they take a little finding. It was good to see excellent numbers of young birds as well as adults on our recent tour to Yorkshire.

Tree Sparrow 1 Tree Sparrow 2


Over the top

One of my guests on the Mull Tour last week said these were her favourite ducks. I see what she means; we saw several in Yorkshire on our way north … but I prefer something less brash and subtle than a Mandarin. Bit over the top these Orientals!


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Nov 2022


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