Even with the wind clearly in the wrong direction you should never miss an opportunity to visit Spurn, but it was tough going today searching for goodies from Sammy’s Point to the Warren and back.
Neill “Shangri-La” Hunt picked me, Alan Wright and Andy Pryce up in the godless hours and we sped cross country, so that we were stumbling around the lane at Easington Cemetery by 0830 in a strengthening south westerly that allowed startlingly white Med Gulls to sail over the fields.
It was quiet, and while Sammy’s Point had 1 Yellow Browed Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, Greater ‘Pecker, Whitethroat, Goldcrest, 2 Whimbrel, Golden Plover and overhead Skylarks and Siskins, none were showing particularly well (apart from the waders), and after meeting up with more windblasted visitors from our side of the Great Divide, we pushed on to Spurn proper to check the area between Kilnsea and the Warren for the rest of the day.
There were Yellow Browed Warblers calling by the Crown and Anchor and in Church Field, but as they were hiding in the strong south westerly, it was more fun to say “howdy” to everyone’s favourite birder, Andy Roadhouse (not really relaxing after completing his masterwork, “The Birds of Spurn”) again as we renewed our annual subscriptions to “Friends of Spurn” – if you haven’t signed up, you should, it’s a great deal and the support helps the best mainland birding site in the UK.
Walking down to the Canal Zone the sun broke through a bit and up to 11 Whinchats were zipping about the fenceline, albeit distantly.
A few Yellow Wags went through with a scattering of hirundines, but it was quiet and sunny spell Commas, Red Admirals and Migrant Hawkers got more attention than they should have.
The hide at the Canal Zone was packed, yet the pool was hardly jumping, apart from a ridiculously close Common Snipe, more Whinchats and Little Grebes.
A seawatch was a good opportunity to take the weight off, and a handful of young Gannets (birds of the year), Common Scoter, Teal, Fulmar, and a Red throated Diver went through as we scanned the waves.
Then we headed to the Crown and Anchor for a restorative in the car park, while listening to an invisible Yellow Browed Warbler and a male Blackcap gorged on elderberries.
Church Field had Yellow Browed too (inevitably keeping out of sight) and a Willow Warbler fluttering around the stonking great Heligoland trap there.
The cruise back over the Pennines was predictably subdued – but there will be other days at Spurn when the wind will be in our favour and it will feel like the best place on earth again.
Thanks all, over and out.