20th November 2020

The season’s first ground frost ushered in a cold day, with temperatures reaching seven degrees under overcast skies and moderate south-westerly winds. Seawatching proved productive during the morning, presumably as a result of yesterday’s northerly airflow displacing birds into the North Sea. Highlights included a Mute Swan, 12 Goldeneye, four Great Northern Divers, the year’s first Red-necked Grebe and eight northern Herring Gulls flying south, with a Sooty Shearwater, a Red-breasted Merganser and two Bonxies headed north. An influx of Woodcock and winter thrushes was also evident: 11 Woodcock on the outer head included three watched coming in off the sea by the Fog Station (with another at RSPB Bempton Cliffs), along with 52 Blackbird, 15 Fieldfare and 23 Redwing.

A Great Northern Diver sheltered off South Landing mid-afternoon, Thornwick Pools hosted single Jack Snipe and Water Rail, with another Jack Snipe was flushed at Bempton.

Great Northern Diver, Fog Station, by Craig Thomas