Thursday 15 October 2020

Back to the head


A day off work and a few hours at Flamborough Head before coming back for the school run. I parked at the Old Fall steps and walked towards the lighthouse. Incessant alarm calls from Goldcrests and Wrens alerted me to the presence of a predator in the front gardens of the lighthouse cottages; I carefully poked my head round a bush to come face to face with the angry amber eyes of a Long-eared Owl a few metres away! It turned - I got a dodgy photo - and it was off, flying over the houses and away south, chased by a local Carrion Crow. A great start. 

Long-eared Owl in the act of taking flight.

I spent a couple of hours looking round the lighthouse grassland in the hope of stumbling across yesterday's Olive-backed Pipit. Sadly, I didn't manage this, but did stumble across a lovely Little Bunting which flew up ticking into the brambles by the hedge. It seems to be the bird found by top bloke and artist Jonathan Pomroy yesterday. I got a quick bit of phonescoped video before it dropped back into the grass. A few minutes later it flew up to the top of the hedge.


Little Bunting. Always a delight!

A Lapland Bunting flew out to sea from Cattlemere calling, seemingly heading for Spurn in the distance. Redwings and a few Song Thrushes were dropping in and hiding in the hedges; some sought food in the ploughed field. 


Redwing and Song Thrush. Trans-North Sea migrants - scenes!

A Sparrowhawk nailed a tired female Blackcap so easily, it was pathetic. I was pleased the Sparrowhawk got a meal at least. A Woodcock flushed from near the sheep field and a Snipe came 'in off'. Old Fall was dripping with Goldcrests, hovering among the dying Sycamore leaves. An elusive Chiffchaff and a canopy feeding Robin increased my pulse rate briefly, before a message that the OBP had been seen saw me heading back round to the lighthouse area. The pipit had gone to ground again and we couldn't relocate. 

A little later, I met up with Rich Baines to kick around a quiet South Landing and then Old Fall again, but like the Little Bunting, the time was ticking away rapidly before I was due home to pick Sol up from school. A pipit appeared, providing a nice finale when it landed close by revealing itself as a Tree Pipit, not the hoped-for Olive-backed, but cracking nevertheless. It was rather confiding, edging furtively in the grass at the foot of the hedge (see pic at the top of this post) before skipping up onto a bough to pose for pics. Back west in time to pick up the Boy Leadley. Happy days!

Tree Pipit, Old Fall Hedge, looking furtive and rare.

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