Tag Archives: Paull Holme Strays

A Ghost emerges in Cottingham

14/6/15 Again Saturday was another slow night moth trapping with only 10 moths of 8 species, although 2 identified late night had gone. This makes the regular checking during the evening a good idea. Apart from Spruce Carpet, with one previous record in October 2013, everything else was had been already recorded this years. DSCN7418

Spruce Carpet

An over friendly Blackbird had obviously learnt the trapping area was a good place to forage, showing the need to try to get up early to beat the “early bird” to the moth. DSCN7417Spent the afternoon checking Little Wold Plantation for Spotted Flycatcher with out success. 15/6/15 Monday had a look round the fields behind KGV Rec,Cottingham. Apart the common Celypha lacunana I found a very distinctive micro new to me. After posting on twitter and facebook was identified as Ptycholoma lecheana, a fairly rare species for the county. DSCN7423

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Ptycholoma lecheana

16/6/15 Tuesday evening checked the fields on corner of New Village road and Dunswell Road. Found a strange creature crawling in the grass. On closer inspection seemed to be a just emerged moth species. Carefully picked it up and carried it home in my camera case.

DSCN7436 On reaching home and it had pumped up to become a female Ghost Moth. DSCN7438

♀.Ghost Moth

20/6/15 Friday night’s moth haul was again small but varied. Brown Silver-line was a new one but I suspect I may have overlooked this species in the pastSmall Magpie was first for 2015.

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Small Magpie DSCN7472

Brown Silver-line

Also first for the year was dark Minor species.

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Minor agg.

Also 2 Common Marbled Carpets were 1st trapped this year as was Common Carpet.

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Common Marbled Carpet

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Common Carpet

Had a look round Snuff Mill Lane before the rain set in. Plenty of Timothy Tortrix, Straw Dot as well as couple of Meadow Brown, all refusing to pose for a picture. Best was a male Nemophora degeerella, an attractive long-horn moth, the only one I’ve recorded away from Tophill Low NR. DSCN1279

♀.Nemophora degeerella-Tophill Low NR-24/6/12

Sorry to my regular followers more inclined to birds. Locally not much on the bird front but did a bit of twitching recently. The account is on my other blog for those not already following.

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Singing Chiffchaff-Snuff Mill Lane,Cottingham.

For recent bird sighting from Hornsea Mere check here.

For the most recent update of the Tophill Low Blog check here.

For Paull Holme Strays Blog here.

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Two new birds for Paull

8/3 A juvenile Iceland Gull was found by Simon Brebner on Saturday morning at Paull Holme Strays.

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Iw Iceland Gull-Paull Holme Strays-Simon Brebner

RL and ML managed to twitch it that afternoon and interestingly had a second immature Iceland Gull flying over Hedon Road towards Alexander Dock on the way. Graham Catley had seen a first winter Iceland Gull at Hull Docks a few weeks back.

10/3 Went to Paull with RL on Monday afternoon. The Iceland Gull was still on the flats off the western inlet of the Strays [Paull tick no.1] . Was quite settled and we were able to creep to the end of the flood bank with out flushing it so getting some reasonable photos, despite my battery failing after a few shots.

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1w Iceland Gull-Paull Sands

However a non-birder oblivious to our mission brazenly walked past RL and flushed it. However it only flew a short distance onto the Strays proper.

Finished the day at Hornsea Mere where we had the nine Scaup again.

11/3 Went to High Eske NR on Tuesday afternoon. Highlights were a singing Chiffchaff, a drake Goosander at dusk and the regular Barn Owl over Pulfin NR. More of a ‘lowlight’ was two Mink that climbed out of the river and walked across the causeway in front of me, into the borrow pit. My first sighting for a few years and worrying for Richard Hampshire who seems to be controlling the species further up the river at Tophill Low NR.

Returned on Friday evening when I had a least nine Little Egrets flying in to roost. Again couldn’t locate the roost and have come to the conclusion that they must roost in trees out of sight west of pit. May have missed a few while looking for the roost including any coming from the south so the twelve reported a few week back may be regular.

12/3 Went to Welton Waters on Wednesday afternoon. Duck numbers were up with 47 Tufted Duck and 18 Goldeneye, split between Brough Angling Complex and “watersports pit”. No Chiffchaff along Common Lane but Pete Scott had two this Saturday. My habit of returning to Brough airfield marsh at dusk finally paid off with a close Short-eared Owl and a female Marsh Harrier coming in to roost.

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Short-eared Owl-Brough airfield marsh

15/3 Went to Hornsea Mere with ML and RL on Saturday afternoon. Nothing from HVWG hide except the assumed escaped Red-crested Pochard so went to Paull. Started at Saltend where Simon Brebner had seen 122 Avocets on Friday but none for us. However while counting the other waders and Shelduck a passing dog-walker called out “look behind you” and there was a very low Red Kite [Paull tick no.2]. RL and I fired off a few quick shots.

Red Kite Saltend  150314 RL+

Red Kite-Paull-RL

ML had stayed in his car but fortunately had seen it independently. Even tried whistling to get our attention despite the strong wind!

Went to the old lighthouses to count the waders on Paull Holme Strays and Sands. Totals were:- Turnstone 29, Bar-tailed Godwit 2, Shelduck 74, Ringed Plover 5,  Sanderling 17, Dunlin 620, Grey Plover 720, Oystercatcher 5, Golden Plover 1900, Avocet 9, Wigeon 53, Little Egret 2 and Curlew 27. I also had a Peregrine repeatedly putting up the waders on Paull Sands.

16/3 Again on Sunday morning had nothing from HVWG hide at Hornsea Mere except the Red-crested Pochard but Geoff Dobbs fared better from the south side starting with Cetti’s Warbler in 1st field then Long-tailed Duck, Black-necked Grebe and redhead Smew. The Velvet Scoter and 4 Scaup were seen in the afternoon. More from the mere here.

RL and I fared little better on the sea between Atwick and Barmston with only a few Red-throated Divers, Great Crested Grebes and Guillemots, although I did have a Kittiwake off Ulrome. Again no sign of the Kumlien’s Gull at Barmston but did have notable 50 Oystercatchers. Also had a Comma butterfly while looking for migrants at Atwick.

For my recent moth trapping in  Cottingham check here.

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Filed under Barmston, Birds in East Yorkshire, High Eske NR, Hornsea Mere, Nature in East Yorkshire, Paull, Paull Holme Strays, Ulrome, Welton Waters

Kumlien’s grip back at Tophill Low NR and other late February highlights

23/2 Started Sunday morning at Paull. Just as RL and I got into the “fisherman’s car park” Nick Morgan pulled up beside us. He was short of counters for the Estuary Counts so RL volunteered to do the section covering Paull Holme Strays. In fact this just meant forwarding numbers from the the count we planned to do anyway. Positioned ourselves behind the old lighthouse near the western inlet to the the Strays which provides surprisingly good shelter from the strong wind. Our counts were:- Teal 40, Golden Plover 6600, Wigeon 682, Shelduck 234, Grey Plover 37, Lapwing 930, Oystercatcher 3,  Bar-tailed Godwit 400, Redshank 52, Dunlin 892, Ringed Plover 20, Curlew 66 and Turnstone 5. More Paull area news here.

Went to meet JH at Hornsea Mere early afternoon. Had an adult Little Gull as well as the usual Scaup and female Velvet Scoter. Again no sign of any Great White Egrets. I’m not aware of any sighting for c2 weeks.

Went to Tophill Low NR with RL late afternoon to do the gull roost on D reservoir. For a change we had Middle Hide  to ourselves. RL picked a winter adult Mediterranean Gull, probably the same bird we had on Friday.

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Adult winter Mediterranean Gull-RL

While watching it RL called out an assumed Kumlien’s Gull. Only saw it briefly before it flew south and was only able it say it was an immature Iceland-type. Fortunately it only flew a short distance and it slowly drifted back north and closer to us over the next hour and a half and we were clearly able to tell it was a 2nd winter Kumlien’s Gull -although paler than the last time I’d seen it well- and most likely the Barmston bird. Most of the regulars on site managed to see it but only from Car Park Hide so didn’t get the close views we eventually got.

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2w Kumlien’s Gull

Having been seen late last year and then again on Monday we were relieved to grip it back. It eventually flew off near dark. While watching the Kumlien’s Gull I picked up a second, near summer plumaged, Mediterranean Gull. Also again had 2 Little Egrets flying south at dusk. For more Tophill Low NR news check here.

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Little Egrets flying south over D reservoir

25/2 On Tuesday afternoon went to Welton Waters. Again very little wildfowl with only 16 Tufted Duck and 11 Goldeneye on the 2 larger pits.  Presumably due to the mild winter. With few Smew in the area and the previously regular drake not at Far Ings it’s looking unlikely one will appear this winter. However with a Long-tailed Duck at Barton-on-Humber GPs there is still the possibly of something interesting before spring. As usual ended the day overlooking Brough airfield marsh. Yet again no Short-eared Owls but did have an immature male Marsh Harrier coming in to roost. 

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Roe Deer-floodback by Brough airfield marsh

27/2 Went to Hornsea Mere with ML and RL on Thursday morning. Again had 8 Scaup, including 2 drakes, and the female Velvet Scoter, all from the HVWG hide.

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Greater Scaup

Velvet Scoter female Hornsea Mere 270214 RL

Female Velvet Scoter-RL

Moved round to the Kirkholme Point where ML picked up the long staying Long-tailed Duck, feeding close to Swan Island. First time I’ve seen it this year but ML and RL had seen it on Saturday. For more news from Hornsea Mere check here.

Long-tailed Duck Hornsea Mere 270214a RL

Long-tailed Duck-RL

Went to High Eske NR late afternoon. Like Welton Waters, wildfowl numbers are well down here. Still c200 Wigeon but that’s low compared to previous years. No Tufted Duck. Great Crested Grebe had increased but still only 6. 13 Goldeneye was respectable but lower than in the past. Only 6 Gadwall and even Mallard numbers were low. The breeding pair of Oystercatcher have been back since the 17th with one on the 3rd. Walked to the north of the pit to look for swans. Had seen a juvenile Whooper Swan, presumably the bird from December, with Mute Swans and a Black Swan on Arram Carr twice last week [both bird in the top image but too distant for a better shot]  but today only had a few Mute Swans. Didn’t have time to do Leven Carr but had seen a male Hen Harrier on Monday, presumably the bird seen recently at Tophill Low NR  [see link above]. Usually had several Little Egret flying towards High Eske/Pulfin NR late afternoon, with 7 on Monday, but saw none today. Previous winters Little Egrets have roosted at the south end of High Eske NR but this winter I haven’t seen any actually roosting. Had a look at Pulfin NR where a regular Barn Owl was hunting but couldn’t get close enough for a picture. A Little Egret, the only one seen tonight, flew over from the south but I couldn’t relocate it roosting nearby. Walking south from Pulfin NR kept pushing a small bird which I assumed to be a Robin but when I finally got a clear view turned out to be a Stonechat, my first here for a few years. The light was fading but I had to try for a photo. Kept moving and was usually obscured but I fired off a few shots and miraculously got one reasonably clear shot.

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Stonechat

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Filed under Birds in East Yorkshire, High Eske NR, Hornsea Mere, Nature in East Yorkshire, Paull Holme Strays, Tophill Low NR, Welton Waters

Paull revisited

25/11 With John Brattan claiming to have photographed an apparent juvenile Gyr Falcon at Paull on Sunday afternoon RL and I were back there again on Monday morning. Started at Paull Holme Strays car park where we met Richard Willison. Had already looked for the falcon but had been beaten by the cold. I picked up 3 Snow Buntings over flying head then heading north west. RL and I braved the bleak conditions to have another look for the falcon and check the waders. With the state of the tide there were plenty of waders in the Strays with 1000’s of Golden Plover, 12 Grey Plover, 24 Ringed Plover and a Knot as well as variable numbers of Dunlin, Redshank and Bar-tailed Godwit. Went round to the riverside car park where Richard had already relocated the pair of Snow Buntings from yesterday. Still along the river side path between the car park and the Strays and again very tame.

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Snow Buntings

Walking back they kept a few yards in front of us, occasionally flying onto the the pilings just off shore.

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Snow Buntings

Went to Tophill Low NR this afternoon. Had been pretty quiet bird wise recently but while having my lunch in car park hide picked up a female Scaup. Went round to Middle hide to get pictures.

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Female Greater Scaup and drake Tufted Duck

Continued as far as Hempholme Lock then did the gull roost late afternoon from top hide. Totals were:- Black-headed Gull 11000, Common Gull 20000, Great Black-backed Gull 1947 and Herring Gull 101. Also good numbers of corvids massing pre-roost with 9000 Jackdaw and 450 Rook. Several Tawny Owls calling in  D wood as we walked back.

The Great White Egret was still at Hornsea Mere this morning. A 2nd bird had been present again up to last Thursday.

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Filed under Birds in East Yorkshire, Hornsea Mere, Nature in East Yorkshire, Paull Holme Strays, Tophill Low NR

Snow Buntings at Paull

24/11 Went to Paull with RL on Sunday morning.

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The Yorkshire Belle in Paull boatyard.

Had a quick look at Salt End to check the tide then moved to the riverside car park where we met Pete Martin on his way out. Had just had a Snow Bunting along the path toward the Strays. Had beed found yesterday. The cracking male was still present practically at the feet of Paul Martin. Got a few shots before it was flushed by an inconsiderate walker. Although we heard it call twice couldn’t relocated it.

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Male Snow Bunting

Roy and Paul were heading back to the car park when I re-found it a few yards further east. Was giving what sounded like a contact call and I wasn’t surprise to see a second drabber bird appear. Got some more pictures and this time they were more settled, only moving a short distance when flushed.

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Snow Buntings

Having filled our boots we headed for the old lighthouses to view the foreshore off the Strays. Bird totals were:- Wigeon 450, Dunlin 600, Black-tailed Godwit 10, Bar-tailed Godwit 4, Redshank 12, Turnstone 14, Ringed Plover 12, Golden Plover 8000, Grey Plover 6, Lapwing 200, a few Curlew and single Little Egret and  Knot.

Bar-tailed and Black-tailed  Godwits Near Paull Holme Strays 241113 RL

Bar-tailed Godwit and Black-tailed Godwit-RL

The Snow Buntings were still present early afternoon.

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Male Snow Bunting

For more recent news from Paull check here.

Next went to Swinemoor. No sign of last Sunday’s 1500 Wigeon but a good number of Lapwing as well as 5 Dunlin, Common Snipe, 3 Redshank, Golden Plover, 5 Teal and 6 Greylag Geese.

Ended the day at Hornsea Mere. The inevitable Great White Egret was on “tree Island” but a distant male Red-breasted Merganser was new. Unfortunately not at the same range as the drabber bird last month [see here]!

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Filed under Birds in East Yorkshire, Hornsea Mere, Nature in East Yorkshire, Paull Holme Strays, Swinemoor

Insects taking over?

28/5 Went to High Eske last Tuesday. As expected at this time of year it was pretty quiet but good to see the Oystercatchers with 2 robust chicks and a pair of Common Terns were nesting on the main island. A Little Ringed Plover was still hanging around although no sign of any breeding activity. Didn’t do Swinemoor as Roy and Martin L had already been where they had 3 Tundra Ringed Plover, 2 Little Ringed Plover and 4 Redshank. At Bewholme Hall they had 2 Little Ringed Plover. 30/5 On Thursday had a good walk round the Drewton Estate. Best thing was a Red Kite low over Keeper’s Lodge although didn’t hang around long enough for me to get the camera out. Also at least 4 Common Buzzards although the small stuff wasn’t too apparent. DSCN7329

Male Grey Wagtail-Weedley Springs

31/5 Went to Paull with Roy and Martin L on Friday morning. Unfortunalely missed the tide but had c45 Ringed Plover and a Dunlin on Paull Sands. DSCN7516

Ringed Plover and Dunlin-Paull Sands

Also 2 Little Egrets in flight over the Strays. Went round to the Strays car park. Surprised to see a Whooper Swan in the fence off area [John Ward had 3 fly from Sunk Island to Paull late Monday evening]. Image

Whooper Swan-Paull Holme Strays-R.Lyon

Also a Whimbel. Image 1

Four Spotted Chaser-Paull Holme Strays

Late afternoon had a walk in Cottingham to Oppy Wood. Little of significance bird wise although good to hear several Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff and Blackcap. Also a Sedge Warbler singing in a ditch off Dunswell Road. However with the temperture well up I had plenty of insects including micro moths. DSCN7589 Helophilus pendulus-Cottingham.

1/6 Back at High Eske NR on Saturday afternoon. Good to see the Common Tern still sitting and a least one Oystercatcher chick. The resident female Goldeneye still had an escort.

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Goldeneye-High Eske NR

A pair of Marsh Harriers were displaying over Pulfin NR. At least 3 male and one female Cuckoo in the area. DSCN7620

Leucozona leucorum-High Eske NR

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Azure Damselfly-High Eske NR

DSCN7633   2/6 Went to Paull with Roy on Sunday morning. Started at Saltend. Tide still well out so very few waders but had a Peregrine over. The Whooper Swan was still on the Strays and on Paull Sands were 2 Little Egrets, Bar-tailed Godwit and Avocet as well as good numbers of Curlew and Shelduck. Went to Swinemoor to see a drake Garganey reported to me by Richard Jennings then on to Bewholme Hall where we had 2 Ringed Plover and an Oystercatcher. DSCN7664

Drake Garganey-Swinemoor

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Reed Bunting-Swinemoor

Finished the day with a sea-watch off Atwick. Highlight was a Great Skua. Also 8 Sandwich Terns, 8 Fulmar, numerous Kittiwake and 5 Common Scoter drifting north close inshore. Sand Martin Atwick 020613 Leo

Sand Martin-Atwick-R.Lyon

3/6 Went to Tophill Low NR on Monday afternoon. DSCN7684

Celypha lacunana-Tophill Low NR

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Chrysolina polita-Tophill Low NR

Had 2 of 3 Little Egrets lingering on Watton NR. DSCN7696

Little Egret-Watton NR

Also a pair of Common Terns lingering but no sign yet of nesting. One Little Ringed Plover there with 3 on South Marsh East but again no sign of nesting. A few Marsh Harriers still around the site. The best thing was my [and likely the sites] first Wall Brown for the year, at East Pond. DSCN7706

Wall Brown-Tophill Low NR

Getting in found a male Golden Oriole had been present on in Burton Bushes on Beverley Westwood for 2 days. Found by Ivan Nethercote and confirmed by Geoff Dobbs this evening. Unfortunately it stopped singing as soon as the news got out. Spend an hour forlornly listening with Roy, Stuart Griffiths and Lee Johnson, joined by Stuart Noble and Steve Webb as we were giving up. Again saw no Spotted Flycatchers but at least one pair of Great Spotted Woodpecker and a pair of Mistle Thrush in the area.

4/6 Burton Bushes checked with out luck by at least Roy and Richard Willison early Wednesday morning. A Great White Egret spent the morning at Hornsea Mere in a tree viewable from Kirkholme Point. Stayed long enough for Roy and Martin L but flew toward the west end early afternoon. As I’ve seen 2 there already I wasn’t tempted to go looking for it. Richard Jennings had the drake Garganey on Swinemoor again this evening.

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Filed under Birds in East Yorkshire, High Eske NR, Moths, Nature in East Yorkshire, Tophill Low NR

Year ticking tiny Temminck’s at Tophill Low NR

22/5 Having missed two on Saturday [see here and here] I was glad to get a message of a Temminck’s Stint on at Tophill Low NR on Watton NR on Wednesday morning. Getting there late afternoon it was still present but distant and often difficult to pick out when static. Also a Wood Sandpiper, a tundrae Ringed  Plover, both new for the site year list, Common Sandpiper and 2 1st summer Little Gulls.

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Wood Sandpiper-Watton NR

Little Gull

Little Gull-Tophill Low NR

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Common Tern-Watton NR

Several Marsh Harriers still being seen and the Osprey was over again early morning.

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Marsh Harrier-Tophill Low NR

Checked out the ever present Ring-necked Duck on the way out.

Roy and Martin L went to Paull and had off Saltend 68 Shelduck, 23 Curlew and  4 Oystercatcher. 20 Ringed Plover on Paull Holme Strays and on Paull Sands 55 Ringed Plover, 42 Dunlin, 2 Sanderling, 35 Turnstone,  720 Grey Plover, 113 Bar-tailed  Godwit, 230 Knot, 5 Avocet, c30 Shelduck, c60 Curlew and 11 Whimbrel. Also a Common Buzzard over.

23/5 Had look round Burton Bushes near Beverley on Thursday morning but no sign of any Spotted Flycatchers.

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Burton Bushes

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Fungi-Burton Bushes

Did Swinemoor this afternoon but no sign of the Ruff seen on Monday but still 2 Little Ringed Plover.

Did Tophill Low NR with Roy. The Temminck’s Stint was still on Watton NR. Also Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper and 2 1st summer Little Gulls dropped in again.

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Common Sandpiper-Watton NR

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Little Ringed Plover-Tophill Low NR

The pair of Little Ringed Plover were still on South Marsh East. The Ring-necked Duck was still on D reservoir.

For last weekend at Kelk check here.

For news from Risby Estate nr Skidby check here.

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Filed under Birds in East Yorkshire, Nature in East Yorkshire, Tophill Low NR