Decided to go to Filey Brigg today to see what waders were about and for a bit of seawatching. Before I even got to my car, though, I had spotted this little beastie walking across the road:

The size and colouration reminded me of a hoverfly I had identified earlier in the year; Eristalis pertinax, the ‘Tapered Drone Fly’, but the abdomen was clearly a different shape. However, lacking a guide to hoverflies, I decided to take the easy way out and just bunged it on Ispot. Within ten minutes I had an ID, Eristalis tenax, or ‘Drone Fly‘. I’ve been a bit lazy with hoverflies to be honest, and this is only the fifth species I’ve added to my species list.

I drove to Filey, and the first bird of any note was a Fieldfare just inside the entrance to the country park. As I approached the top of the brigg, six Oystercatchers could be seen feeding amongst the seagulls. As I walked down the side of the brigg I spotted a Wheatear on the path, which, despite ten minutes of trying, couldn’t be persuaded to be a Pied Wheatear or a Desert Wheatear or anything else of that ilk.

Got to the end of the brigg and set up my scope. Large numbers of auk sp. were flying north, along with slightly fewer Gannets. A flock of five Common Scoter flew north, as did four Red-Throated Diver and a single Eider. Decent numbers of waders were seen along the brigg, with at least 12 Purple Sandpipers, 3 Knot, 1 Curlew, 1 Grey Plover, 23 Turnstone and 16 Dunlin. A Shag was also perched on the rocks halfway down the brigg, the first I’ve seen at this location and one of the best views I’ve had of this species.

Also found an empty shell on the beach. I knew I’d seen it before, but just couldn’t remember its name. Checked my species list when I got home, which revealed it to be Donax vittatus, the ‘Banded Wedge Shell

Stopped off at Tesco on the way home to buy sundries and comestibles, and noticed two Sparrowhawks circling high above. Not somewhere I’ve spotted Sparrowhawks before, so that was pleasant.

Of local interest, yesterday and today there has been a Velvet Scoter at Staindale Lake in Dalby Forest. Not a species I’ve seen before, but I’d rather see it in its natural habitat rather than at an inland lake. Just wondered how it managed to get there, the easterlies this week haven’t been particularly strong.

Got home, ate crumble, posted this.

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