EAST COAST WRYNECK FALL!

Eurasian Wryneck, Crown & Anchor, Kilnsea. Magic! 

Eurasian Wryneck, Crown & Anchor, Kilnsea. Magic! 

A BIG FALL OF WRYNECKS ON THE EAST COAST prompted a visit to Spurn Point with Mark Varley and Rocket. We arrived to news of a wryneck trapped at Kew Villa, which we zoomed off for immediately. A lifer for Mark it soon showed how it got its name, twisting and turning its long neck before it was released. There had been an unprecedented 20-30 wrynecks the previous day but we were happy to see a total of six, including a couple of very showy and confiding birds, feeding on ants on sunny grass verges in the evening. It is great to know that drift migrants can still turn up in such good numbers and we were surrounded by others - smart whinchats and wheatears were dotted all along the Humber shore to the point, as well as lots of warblers, mostly Willow Warblers and Common Whitethroats and we also managed to see two Icterine Warblers. One of the 'Ickys' disgraced itself while Rocket was barbecuing his head in the hot sun, landing a fence wire only a few metres away. Other interesting migrants included Yellow Wagtails, Pied and Spotted Flycatchers, however, the bird of the day for Spurn was a Yellowhammer over the Warren – good one for us too, it was lost as a breeding bird from the East Lancashire Ornithological Desert years ago. It was also nice to see lots of familiar faces at Spurn today with cars from Burnley and Blackpool as well as Spurn regulars Adam Hutt and Garry Taylor. Less welcome was another encounter with armed police. We had been reported acting suspiciously near Easington Gas Terminal in the morning – looking for another wryneck. They added this facility to their list of other places I’ve been stopped that already included Heysham and Seaton Carew Nuclear Power Stations! Should I be worried?