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Belle setting sail to show bird bonanza

The RSPB Puffin and Gannet Cruises are run every weekend from Bridlington Harbour until Sunday 5 August.
The RSPB Puffin and Gannet Cruises are run every weekend from Bridlington Harbour until Sunday 5 August.

The extremely popular RSPB Puffin and Gannet Cruises that set a course for Bempton Cliffs are up and running for the 2018 season.

People can now get aboard the famous Yorkshire Belle pleasure cruiser to witness an amazing wildlife spectacle involving around half a million seabirds.

Standing on the deck of the Belle, swirling spirals of gannets will be drifting above while puffins flick across the waves like skimming stones.

Razorbills, guillemots, fulmars and kittiwakes are never far from the action, and even porpoises have been known to pop up unexpectedly.

Sailings will set out from Bridlington Harbour every weekend until Sunday 5 August, with staff and volunteers from the RSPB East Riding Local Group on board to point out what’s happening and help identify the seabirds – so you don’t need to be David Attenborough to enjoy the sights.

A spokesman said: “Later sailings are a must-do for fans of the UK’s largest seabird, the gannet.

“Food is thrown overboard to encourage these magnificent birds to plunge into the waves for their favourite snack.

“Their table manners may leave a lot to be desired, but their 60 mile per hour dives are spot on.”

Cruise co-ordinator, Kim Smales, is thrilled that the cruises will be heading out once again:

Kim said: “Now in their 29th year, these mini-adventures are definitely one of the highlights for visitors to this stretch of Yorkshire’s heritage coast, that has Bempton Cliffs at its heart.

“The skipper gently coaxes the boat as close as possible to the cliffs so you’re almost rubbing shoulders with the seabirds.

“Teaming up with Eventbrite has made getting a ticket much more convenient.

“It couldn’t be easier to make sure of a place on board now– just sit back on your sofa and log on.” Prices are: adult £27.50, child £13.25 (RSPB members: adult £22.50, child £11.25). Booking is now open at Eventbrite.co.uk, search Puffin Cruise.