Tag Archives: Slavonian Grebe

More winter wildfowl

30 Oct

30/10/16 Started Sunday morning at High Eske NR, with RL and ML, hoping to see the recent Long-tailed Duck. Met DH along the track from the farm. Had seen the duck on Saturday evening but no sign today but had had a Smew. The lone Whooper Swan was still present.fullsizeoutput_1a4d

Whooper Swan-High Eske NR

Quickly found the redhead Smew among the Tufted Duck and Pochard at the south end. Also picked out three Scaup. The large flock of Greylags dropped still with the Pink-footed Goose. Next to Hornsea Mere starting in the Seaton Road Hide. A Pink-footed Goose was just in front of the hide. Eleven Whooper Swans were near the entrance to Decoy Bay and another eight flew southwest.fullsizeoutput_1a4a

Whooper Swans at Hornsea Mere

I picked up the two Slavonian Grebe between us and Kirkholme Point, presumably displaced by the boat.dscn3372

What we have to contend with at Hornsea Mere

Eventually came fairly close.


Juvenile and adult Slavonian Grebes with Mute Swan-Hornsea Mere

Went round to Kirkholme Point where the same or another Pink-footed Goose was just offshore.fullsizeoutput_1a42

Pink-footed Goose at Hornsea Mere off Kirkholme Point

A few Tundra Bean and White-fronted Geese and a Common Scoter had been seen earlier. Went to Tophill Low NR this afternoon. I found a redhead Smew on D reservoir from car park hide. Likely the same bird we saw this morning as it was also associating with Pochard. Flew to the north end and RL and I went to the North Hide while ML went to North Marsh where a Bittern had been seen earlier. The Smew showed close in before flying off with Pochards eventually coming down below car park hide where it stayed until late afternoon at least. fullsizeoutput_1a3b

Redhead Smew with Pochard at Tophill Low NR on D reservoir

Also had two Green Sandpipers in flight before dropping onto Decoy Fields.dscn3408

The new visitors centre at Tophill Low NR-‘still under wraps’

Did the gulls. Although we didn’t stay until dark, with the clocks now back, we’re likely to start doing the gull roost again. A Tawny Owl was calling in D wood as we left. Had a few Migrant Hawkers. With the forecast of colder nights there won’t be many more.

10/1/16 In a higher gear at Hornsea Mere

10 Jan

5/1/16 Back to work on Tuesday and no chance of getting out. Did add Sparrowhawk to the year list on Cedar Drive though. This year I intend birding at work during the winter months at least and submitting interesting things like Starling numbers to Birdtrack.

Year list 66.

9/1/16 Saturday was the only easy day of the week and manged a ride up to Wauldby Sprogs but saw very few birds except a possible Marsh Tit that kept it’s distance.

10/1/16 Went to Hornsea Mere with RL on Sunday morning to meet JH at Kirkholme Point. The Slavonian Grebe was again showing well but still a bit distant for a good picture.


Slavonian Grebe-Hornsea Mere

Had a look from the tip but no sign of anything interesting and the colder weather wasn’t making it fun so moved to the shelter of the old hide. Haven’t spent much time there recently but in the past has proved a good place to view from. Proved so today with the drake Long-tailed Duck been found, followed by a first winter Little Gull then the Red-necked Grebe. All proved difficult to see and even more to photograph, with the duck and gull always staying distant but the grebe did manage to drift to just off Swan Island. Also had a male Marsh Harrier flying west in front the hide. Later had the same bird from Wassand Hide.

Had some interesting fungi leaving the hide.

{Mention of the “old hide” is not intended as a invitation to use it!!! but see here}


Velvet Shank-Hornsea Mere

Moved round to Wassand Hall carpark early afternoon. Walking towards the hide noticed a tit flock in a large tree near the first gate. One larger bird was sat in a branch junction tapping at a nut. I immediately called “Nuthatch” to JH who was able to see it before it flew off. RL had unfortunately gone to get air in a soft tyre. Texted him but although seen again he couldn’t get on it. Nuthatch has been seen in recent years usually on private feeders at the hall, but this was my first sighting. As it seems to like this area maybe putting some nuts near the gate might make it more visible.

Nothing new from Wassand Hide but did have an adult Little Gull flying west.


Male Marsh Harrier from Wassand Hide


View to the west of Wassand Hide.

Year list 75

For more recent news from Hornsea Mere check the blog.

First winter Citrine Wagtail at Danes’ Dyke.

9 Nov

DSCN5597Cliff face at Danes’ Dyke, Flamborough

On the Wednesday 5th November a first winter Citrine Wagtail was found on the beach at South Landing, Flamborough. Still present on Thursday it wasn’t seen on Friday but relocated nearby to the west on the beach at Danes’ Dyke on Saturday.

9/11/14 Out Sunday morning as usual with RL and ML. Both RL and I had seen Citrine Wagtail before including in Yorkshire but ML needed it so headed for Danes’ Dyke. Surprised that East Yorkshire CC were still charging for parking as in the past all the Flamborough carparks were free afternoon half-term. However can’t greedy when a quality bird is on site.

Walked down the ravine to the beach and noticed the swarms of flies over the rotting sea weed, obviously the reason the wagtails and pipits were in the area. Spent a short while with others birders looking at 2 Pied Wagtails before seeing a larger crowd to east and were soon watching the Citrine feeding at the base of the cliff. With the number of birders present we stayed at a good distance [hence not the best picture!?].


1w Citrine Wagtail-Danes’ Dyke, Flamborough


Birders watching Citrine Wagtail at Danes’ Dyke.

While we were watching the wagtail a Woodcock flew in, apparently off the sea, and alighted on rocks below the wagtail. We all give up on the Citrine to get pictures of the new arrival.


Woodcock-Danes’Dyke, Flamborough 

When we looked up for the wagtail however it had gone, apparently having flown west, possibly flushed by the Woodcock. Went looking for it but wasn’t on views but had several Rock Pipits.


Rock Pipit in a cloud of flies.

Although we didn’t see it again The Citrine Wagtail wasn’t missing long and showed all afternoon. A Water Pipit was still at South Landing but we did the sea between Barmston and Atwick finishing at Hornsea Mere where we had all 3 Slavonian Grebes for the first time in a week as well as a pair of Red-crested Pochard but no sign again of the Red-necked Grebe.


There was some questions about the Citrine Wagtail but now seem resolved. I’m not going to go into them as others do it better so See here.