Rare visitor flies in to Yorkshire coast

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An unusual breed of woodpecker had birdwatchers flocking to the Yorkshire coast last week.

The wryneck was spotted at Bempton, after a spell of easterly and north-easterly winds.

Tony Hood, secretary of Flamborough Bird Observatory, said: “They are a former breeding bird in Britain but due to habitat loss, we lost them in the 1960s and 1970s.”

Usually found in Europe at this time of year, wrynecks spend their winters in Africa - and the Bempton visitor proved to be very friendly.

“It was very amenable,” Tony added. “It was near the exit road and cars were driving past it and it wasn’t bothered.

“I’ve not seen one for a couple of years.”
The weather conditions also brought a couple of other rare visitors to Bempton - an Arctic warbler and a greenish warbler.

But the wryneck disappointed bird-watchers who came to the area at the weekend.

“It did a trick familiar with rare birds, the Friday night bunk,” Tony said.