For me winter is one of the most special times of the year and Scarborough Harbour is the place I love to work on my photography. With all sorts of different challenging light conditions getting the exposure and angle right is no easy task. Every year there seems to be something special in the harbour and occasionally you get a bumper year and this year (with only a few days left) has proved to be just amazing.
Over the last few weeks we have had all three diver species present with numerous Red-throated Divers visiting and a single Black-throated Diver making an appearance for a few days. A Great Northern Diver has been with us now for nearly three weeks and was still seen yesterday (28th). It's not all about the divers other species that have visited the harbour over the last few weeks have been a Slavonian Grebe, 4 Great-crested Grebes, 5 Guillemots and a couple of adult Kittiwakes. There are also the residents which includes a regular roost of 30+ Purple Sandpipers on the North Pier, 50+ Turnstone on the West Pier, Rock Pipits (check all piers), Shag, Cormorant, Herring Gull and Great-black-backed Gull.
The harbour can also attract many other passing species moving along our coastline. Species such as Glaucous Gull, Iceland Gull, Little Auk, Red-breasted Merganser, Common Eider and Long-tailed Duck. It's not all about the big birds and in October a single Snow Bunting took up residency on the North Pier for 5 days.
Scarborough Harbour is just an amazing place to visit at this time of year. So what next I ask myself? Well, as the year turns and 2012 is nearly upon us it must be time for something MEGA I feel! The one bird I would love to see in the harbour would be a White-billed Diver and I have a feeling it will not be long before this incredible bird visits our coastline.
Great Northern Diver