Recent Daily Highlights

Our full archive of daily highlights and logs going back to 2014 can be found on the Daily Log & Archive page.


  • 21st April 2021

    The weather consisted of moderate north-north-easterly winds, sunny intervals and temperatures peaking at nine degrees C. Seven Eiders and 21 Sandwich Terns flew south during the seawatch, while a lone Manx Shearwaters moved north. Notable passerine migrants included a Hooded Crow on the Golf Course, the year’s first Whinchat at Thornwick, four Wheatears and a Black Redstart at Hartendale. A male Redstart was the day’s highlight from RSPB Bempton Cliffs.

    Wheatear, RSPB Bempton Cliffs, by Alan Walkington
    Puffin, North Cliffs, by Don Hustings
  • 20th April 2021

    A light south-easterly wind established during the afternoon of another sunny day, with temperatures reaching ten degrees C. Thornwick Pools hosted two Tufted Ducks and a Little Grebe, with wader interest including single Golden Plover and Ringed Plover along with two Little Ringed Plovers. A creamcrown Marsh Harrier flew west over the village, a Red Kite south along the Dykes, whilst a Common Tern flew south over the outer head. A small arrival of passerine migrants took place with 42 Swallows, a Ring Ouzel, two Redstarts, 16 Willow Warblers, the year’s first three Common Whitethroats, nine Wheatear and two Yellow Wagtails. Twenty Bottlenose Dolphins were off RSPB Bempton Cliffs where grounded migrants included lone Common Whitethroat, Goldcrest and Redwing, together with five Wheatears. Six Red-legged Partridges frequented fields between Speeton and Buckton, with five Corn Buntings at Buckton Pond.

    Common Whitethroat, Old Fall Hedge, by Andrew Allport
    Fox cub, outer head, by Brett Richards
  • 19th April 2021

    Sunny skies again featured during a day of light onshore winds and temperatures that reached nine degrees C. Two Tufted Ducks, a Bar-tailed Godwit and 43 Sandwich Terns flew south during the seawatch, with two Manx Shearwaters heading in the opposite direction. A small influx of 27 Fieldfare was notable, with other records including 43 Sand Martins, a Redwing, two Wheatears, two Yellow Wagtails, a Siskin and two Lesser Redpolls (including one rung). Single Ring Ouzel and Yellow Wagtail flew south-east over RSPB Bempton Cliffs, where a large pod of c.35 Bottlenose Dolphins lingered offshore. Thirteen birds were trapped during a ringing session on the outer head including four Blackcaps, two Chiffchaffs and a Lesser Redpoll.

    Lesser Redpoll, outer head, by Chrys Mellor
    Barn Owl, North Cliffs, by John Beaumont
  • 18th April 2021

    A light easterly wind developed in the afternoon of another sunny day, with temperatures peaking at nine degrees C. The year’s first two Common Terns were recorded during a seawatch that also featured 84 Sandwich Terns and eight Eider. A Great Northern Diver was on the sea between South Dykes and Sewerby early morning. A male Redstart on the outer head and a Crossbill near South Landing were also new for the year. Additional records included a Fieldfare, five singing Willow Warblers at Thornwick, one Wheatear, a Yellow Wagtail and a Corn Bunting. RSPB Bempton Cliffs attracted two Short-eared Owls, a Willow Warbler, two Wheatears, another male Redstart, one White Wagtail, a Yellow Wagtail and a lone Redpoll.

    Yellow Wagtail, Thornwick Pools, by Craig Thomas
  • 17th April 2021

    Sunny throughout, with very light variable winds and temperatures reaching nine degrees C. A Bar-tailed Godwit and 83 Sandwich Terns flew south during the morning seawatch. Thornwick Pools attracted two Little Ringed Plovers and a Dunlin, whilst a Golden Plover toured the outer head. A Short-eared Owl hunted the outer head during the morning. Passerine migrants included eight Willow Warblers, a Goldcrest, three Redwing, a Fieldfare, two Wheatears, two Yellow Wagtails, two Siskin and a Brambling. Sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs included two Pink-footed Geese, a Marsh Harrier flying south-east, two Short-eared Owls, two Willow Warblers and a Goldcrest. Nearby, Buckton hosted a Fieldfare and a Ring Ouzel.

    Yellowhammer, South Landing, by Jarred Johnson
  • 16th April 2021

    After light rain briefly first thing, sunny throughout with a light onshore wind developing. A total of 42 Common Scoters and 21 Sandwich Terns flew north on the seawatch. A lone Great Northern Diver was on the sea off South Landing, a Red Kite drifted over the village, while the outer head attracted a Golden Plover, eight Curlew and two Snipe. The first two Willow Warblers appeared on the outer head, with other notable migrant totals 35 Sand Martins, ten Swallows, a Redwing, one Fieldfare, four Wheatears, a Yellow Wagtail and a Siskin. Sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs included single Golden Plover and Yellow Wagtail overhead and three Short-eared Owls still in residence.

    Kestrel, Oceanview, by Andy Hood
  • 15th April 2021

    Light northerly winds persisted during another sunny day, with temperatures reaching nine degrees C. A drake Goldeneye and 14 Sandwich Terns flew north during the morning seawatch. Two Pink-footed Geese remained on the outer head, while a pair of Tufted Ducks on Thornwick Lakes were newly arrived. Ringed Plover and Yellow Wagtail visited nearby Thornwick Pools and a Red Kite flew north-west over the village mid-afternoon. Passerine migrants included 23 Sand Martins, six Swallows, two Grey Wagtails and a Siskin. On the western fringe of the area, Sewerby Hall attracted a Ring Ouzel and Buckton Pond hosted four Snipe.

    Tufted Ducks, Thornwick, by Brett Richards
  • 14th April 2021

    Light north-west/north-east winds continued throughout another sunny day, with temperatures reaching eight degrees C. During the seawatch, 52 Common Scoters and a Long-tailed Duck flew south, with a Manx Shearwater and 11 Sandwich Terns moving north. Thornwick Pools attracted two Ringed Plovers, two Little Ringed Plovers, the year’s first Yellow Wagtail and a White Wagtail. Sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs included three Short-eared Owls, two pairs of Grey Partridges, a Wheatear, two White Wagtails and a Blackcap, with a White Wagtail at Buckton.

    Grey Seal, outer head, by Andrew Allport
  • 13th April 2021

    Sunny throughout, with a light wind backing from a north-westerly to an easterly direction, with temperatures reaching nine degrees C. An evening seawatch was rewarded with 30 Common Scoter flying south and a second calendar-year Little Gull and seven Sandwich Terns moving north. Three Great Northern Divers continued in residence on the sea off South Dykes, with nine Bottlenose Dolphins swimming north out of the Bay past the Fog Station. The improved weather conditions resulted in increased numbers of raptors drifting over the headland: 11 Sparrowhawks, two Marsh Harriers and 13 Common Buzzards were all recorded. Wader interest included two Little Ringed Plovers, a Ringed Plover and the year’s first Green Sandpiper. A Short-eared Owl on the outer head was a presumed migrant. Two Nuthatch were located, one typically in South Dykes, but the other at South Landing was more unusual. Notable migrant passerines included: 32 Sand Martins, nine Swallows, 13 Chiffchaff, five Blackcap, a Goldcrest, a Fieldfare, a Black Redstart, four Wheatears, three Siskin and a Brambling. Six White Wagtails accompanied 15 Pieds on a ploughed clifftop field at Buckon. Notable records from nearby RSPB Bempton Cliffs included two Short-eared Owls and a Wheatear.

    Blackcaps, Oceanview, by Andy Hood
  • 12th April 2021

    A moderate north-westerly wind featured throughout another sunny, but cold day, with temperatures reaching six degrees C. Two Pink-footed Geese lingered near North Marsh, whilst two Pochard on the sea off South Dykes were particularly noteworthy; a species that is getting increasingly scarce. Wader interest included a Ringed Plover and three Little Ringed Plovers, with one of the latter on flooded flashes along Water Lane. Two Goldcrests, a Blackcap and three Siskin visited gardens on the southern edge of the village.

    Little Ringed Plover, Thornwick Pools, by Andrew Allport
  • 11th April 2021

    A moderate/strong northerly wind pushed a series of heavy snow showers ashore during the morning, with sunny intervals later and morning temperatures no higher than three degrees C. A Blue Fulmar lingered offshore on an otherwise quiet seawatch. The sheltered bay between South Landing and South Dykes attracted two Great Northern Divers, four Great Crested Grebes, three Red-breasted Mergansers, seven Common Scoters and two Long-tailed Ducks. Thornwick Pools hosted a Ringed Plover and two Little Ringed Plovers.

    Tawny Owl, Oceanview, by Andy Hood
  • 10th April 2021

    Light winds varied direction between a north-westerly and north-easterly throughout yet another cold day; despite sunny intervals, temperatures only reached six degrees C. Three Great Northern Divers remained off South Dykes, along with a Great Crested Grebe and five Eider. A creamcrown Marsh Harrier flew east over South Landing. Migrant passerines included 34 Sand Martins, four Swallows, 11 Chiffchaffs, three Blackcaps, four Goldcrest, one Wheatear and two White Wagtails. Notable sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs: three Short-eared Owls, four Swallows, two Chiffchaffs, two Blackcaps, one Goldcrest and a White Wagtail.

    Wheatear, Thornwick Nab, by Alan Walkington

  • 9th April 2021

    Light winds veered westerly to north-easterly during a day of sunny intervals and temperatures that reached seven degrees C. Four Velvet Scoters, 30 Common Scoters and 11 Red-throated Divers flew south, with spring’s first two Whimbrel, two ‘intermedius’ Lesser Black-backed Gulls and 30 Sandwich Terns moving north.

    The headland itself hosted a Pink-footed Goose, two Little Ringed Plovers, five Snipe and a Jack Snipe. Passerine migrants started to reappear after the week’s cold snap, including 29 Sand Martins, a Swallow, 16 Chiffchaff, five Blackcaps, a Fieldfare, one Redwing, two Wheatear, two White Wagtails and three Siskin. Sightings from RSPB Bempton Cliffs included two Short-eared Owls, a Swallow, one Wheatear and a White Wagtail.

    Snipe, Flamborough, by Andrew Allport
  • 8th April 2021

    An overcast day, with a blustery south-west wind and temperatures reaching 11 degrees C. After two days of gale force northerlies, there was every chance of seabirds re-orientating back north and so it proved for one species at least – over 133,000 Razorbills flew north past the headland; unprecedented numbers that obliterated the previous highest daily count of 32,700. Other notable seawatch records included a Great Northern Diver flying south and a Blue Fulmar and two Sandwich Terns moving north. Four Great Northern Divers and two Long-tailed Ducks remained on the sea off South Dykes. A creamcrown Marsh Harrier flew east over the Dykes from Bempton village, while single Redwing and Brambling were the most notable passerines. A White Wagtail was located on plough at RSPB Bempton Cliffs.

    Pied Wagtail, South Landing, by John McLoughlin