Flamborough Bird Observatory has been accredited as one of twenty bird observatories in Britain and Ireland by the Bird Observatories Council.

To maintain its accredited status, the Observatory is obliged to maintain a programme of bird ringing within its recording area as an integral part of its work. All bird ringing is conducted by highly trained licensed ringers within the national British ringing scheme coordinated by the British Trust for Ornithology. This work provides data for guiding conservation policies of such bodies as Natural England, Natural Resources Wales, Scottish Natural Heritage and their counterparts in Ireland.

When the BTO Ringing Scheme was established over 100 years ago, the primary focus was the study of bird movements. While ringing data can still be used to study migration and dispersal, today they are primarily used in the study of population change. ‘Population modelling’ may sound like a complex process, but the basic principle is relatively straightforward – bird numbers are determined by the number of fledglings produced and the subsequent survival of both those youngsters and their parents.

Flamborough Bird Observatory has ringing records dating back to 1976, showing that over 50,000 birds have been ringed here. We have a team of 14 licensed ringers and trainees and we have numerous sites in which to ring, which encompass all the headland habitats. Although the Observatory is not a fully manned ringing station, where possible visiting licensed ringers can be hosted at one of our headland sites. The Observatory will use its best endeavours to provide training for visiting ringers and trainee ringers, subject always to the availability of suitably qualified ringing permit holders.

We are looking to recruit more experienced ringers to take an active part in the team, especially ‘A’ ringers and trainers, although ‘C’ ringers wanting to develop would also be welcome. If regular ringing and involvement at a growing, forward-looking bird observatory is of interest to you, please get in touch to discuss further by emailing info@flamboroughbirdobs.org.uk in the first instance.

All the Observatory’s daily ringing totals are entered onto Trektellen. These daily logs are accessible below:

  1. Flamborough
  2. Bempton Cliffs

All-time ringing highlights are detailed here.

The annual Ringing Summary for 2020 can be found here and for 2019 here.

Examining feather moult
Ringing demonstration at South Landing
8th August 2022

8th August 2022

A sunny day, with light onshore winds and temperatures peaking at 21 degrees C. Seawatch highlights included 37 Manx Shearwaters, a Mediterranean Gull, a juvenile Yellow-legged Gull, 45 Sandwich Terns and four Arctic Terns. Both a Marsh Harrier and a juvenile Cuckoo were present on the outer head. The Red-tailed Shrike continued its long stay…
7th August 2022

7th August 2022

Sunny throughout, with a light/moderate westerly wind and temperatures peaking at 24 degrees C. An arrival of 49 Willow Warblers took place on the outer head, where a lone Wheatear frequented the Golf Course. Thornwick Pools attracted a Greenshank and three Dunlin. Aerial specialists were pushed onto the headland by the westerly airstream, with 140…
6th August 2022

6th August 2022

There were sunny intervals throughout, with a light wind initially westerly in direction veering south-easterly later, and temperatures peaked at 18 degrees C. The morning’s seawatch was quiet, with notable records limited to 14 Manx Shearwaters, 13 Sandwich Terns and a Common Tern. A scattering of migrants included one Greenshank, a Cuckoo, three Spotted Flycatchers…