North Yorkshire Cliffs – May 2019

I finally managed to get up to the seabird sites of North Yorkshire in May, over 25 years since my last visit. Perhaps a few metres less to see thanks to coastal erosion 😉 but was great to be back.

We started at Bempton Cliffs where thralls of gannets, razorbills, kittiwakes and guillemots clung to the sides in a gravity defying manner. Several birds landed within metres of us, collecting grass and nesting materials.

Whilst here, we had to see one species in particular – the Atlantic puffin. After a few surveys of the cliff we caught up with the first couple of the day. These birds, clowns of the sea, are just as charismatic as you’d expect.

Whilst at Bempton we were also treated to two peregrines and a hunting barn owl. Corn buntings and tree sparrows littered the cliff top walk beyond the RSPB reserve.

A visit to Flamborough Head was equally beautiful but gave a less diverse mix of birds. No gannets nest this far down and puffins were absent. We did have incredible views of fulmar and guillemot however – one of each had found themselves on lowers rocks.

Other birds spotted out and about included a rock pipit in Scarborough and curlew on the moors.

A lovely weekend away.


Puffin 1

gannet_bempton_holding_grass CRguillemots 2 CRgannets x 2 CRfulmar flight CRgannet profile CRperegrinerazorbill yawning CRbarn owl

puffin 4

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