April 14th took me up to Hartlepool. Zinc Works Road and a wheatear running in the long grass. Got the camera but couldn't refind the bird. So I went to Dorman's Pool looking for sedge warbler. No sign: I kept finding wrens!
Then a quick stop at Phil Stead's where things were pretty low key: a shelduck and a few blackwits present. Oh, and a moorhen!
Lifeboat station kittiwakes - just a few birds present.
In the grass nearby a green-veined white butterfly.
Next stop Greatham Creek. Avocets easily spotted, also quite a few redshanks. One avocet was clearly different...red and yellow flag.
I spotted a spotted!
Headland birds were confined to the only remaining bit of rock between the piers - cormorant and shag and some silent big gulls. [Big gulls don't cry!]
Back later to Dorman's Pool for another look. Peter Garbutt took me to where we might see a gropper. But we failed to find it. A crow sat on a post by the car. It liked this post and didn't want to fly off so it let me get out of the car and take a few close-ups. Crows are usually much more wary than this one!
The piece of dead grass was annoying so I walked round the car for a better angle [expecting the crow to fly] but it clearly liked being the centre of my attention!
Black and white version
April 17th: Rufforth tip. I'd never been before so I planned a walk along Manor Lane from the Wetherby road lay-by [B1224]. It was early and blackcaps were everywhere [I saw at least 10 including 3 males chasing each other]; also saw treecreeper and chiffchaffs. No willow warbler unfortunately although whitethroat and willow warbler had been reported.
After a few hundred yards I went left and found three large pools I never knew existed. Complete with tufted ducks, very nervous mallards, a grey heron and a green sandpiper.
Orange tip. Good name for the location!
Nearly back at the car...
The lay-by is close to Rufforth Flying Club.
April 17th: a tour of Poppleton's lanes produced nothing really exciting but I did add red-legged partridge, yellowhammer, shelduck and reed bunting to my list of birds seen this year within the York boundary.