North Yorkshire Bird Sightings

Wednesday 3rd March, 2021 by Host & Stay

North Yorkshire Bird Sightings

North Yorkshire is full of open spaces and rich, vibrant history. Not only are there quaint villages, bustling cities and fantastic walks in the countryside, there’s also lots of wildlife all around.

Particularly, birds. In this blog, we’ll take a look at some of the more popular areas for bird sightings within North Yorkshire. We’ll also show you some places to stay to enjoy a fun-filled trip on the lookout for some feathery friends.

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First stop, Guisborough.

Bird Watching Guisborough 

Guisborough is full of beauty and intrigue, particularly when it comes to wildlife and nature. It’s for this reason that birdwatching and natural photography is so popular in the area, and there are lots of different species you can spot if you know where to look.

Depending on the season, Guisborough forest and the urban areas offer a wide variety of bird watching opportunities. In Spring and Summer there are an abundance of Swifts, Swallows, and Martins on the hunt for flies to eat. They migrate to Africa in Autumn, settling for warmer clients over the winter.

Finches and Tits are in abundance within the town and wooded areas throughout the year, as well as birds of prey such as Sparrowhawks. Tawny Owls are often heard but rarely seen, due to the fact they predominantly come out at night. However, you can sometimes spot a Short Owl flying over urban areas of Guisborough, if you get lucky.

Other birds of prey such as the Peregrine Falcon nest in Guisborough on a yearly basis and have been seen to catch local pigeons. These are a rare breed and make Guisborough a special place for bird watching thanks to the rich diversity of nature and wildlife on offer.

If you’re looking for a stay in Guisborough to carry out some bird watching or enjoy many other amenities and attractions, take a look at Lowcross Cottage, available with Stay North Yorkshire. Located in Pinchinthorpe, this luxury bungalow sleeps four and is within walking distance of Guisborough Branch Walkaway, where you’ll find cycling tracks, walking trails, and walks in Guisborough Forest and the woodland areas.

Malton Bird Watching

Malton is a hidden gem of North Yorkshire, and thanks to it’s relatively remote location, is a fantastic place to find some rare species of different breeds across the countryside landscapes.

Recent sightings in the area include the Grey Phalarope, Long-billed Dowitcher, and Dusky Warbler, all of which are fantastic for nature photography. Birds of prey that have been spotted as recently as February 2021 include numerous White-tailed Eagles, which are a regular in this secluded village of North Yorkshire.

The white-tailed eagle is a very large of eagle and is often found at sea, so this is a fantastic opportunity so spot a rare and awe-inspiring bird of prey in the heart of North Yorkshire.

Great Habton Cottage is ideal for birdwatchers and families to spend some time away from it all in Malton. It houses five guests and features two bedrooms, not to mention a homely living room complete with log burner and a spacious, open-plan kitchen full of modern appliances. This is a fantastic place to rest your feet and relax after a long day bird watching.

Bird Watching in Saltburn

Saltburn is one of the most beautiful beaches and seaside villages in England, and rests at the heart of North Yorkshire. With fantastic cliffs and fantastic independent shops and restaurants, it’s the perfect getaway for the family, a couple, or the lone traveller. 

It’s also known for rare bird species thanks to its proximity to both land and sea. The Northern Eider is one of the most popular species found by bird watchers in Saltburn and is a large sea-duck which has a white and black feathered coat. 

Go further inland, and you’re likely to stumble across a Goldcrest or two. These are gorgeous, jittery little creatures and are often found in woodlands and forests over Autumn and Winter. 

The same goes for the Common Redstart, which is a small passerine bird, formerly classed as a member of the thrush family, but is now recognized as an Old-World Flycatcher.

There are lots of species to see at Saltburn, and if you fancy a trip to this fantastic seaside town, we have accommodation to suit you.

From Apartment A, Cornerhouse Apartments that sleeps five, to Burnsyde Beach House which overlooks the cliffs and sleeps six and Emerald Hideaway that sleeps two, there’s something for the entire family, a couple, or even a lone spotter at Saltburn, available for short stays with Stay North Yorkshire.

Harrogate Bird Spotting

Harrogate is one of the most vibrant towns in North Yorkshire, and boasts a range of high-profile shops, restaurants, as well as independent businesses selling local products. 

It’s also fantastic for wildlife photography and spotting, and has a massive selection of walks, viewing locations and attractions within the district.

Birds of prey such as the White-tailed Eagle can be regularly spotted in Harrogate, as well as the Dusky Warbler, Long-billed Dowitcher and Grey Phalarope. Species such as the Blackcap are found all year round, as well as Kingfishers, Marsh Tits, Common Redpolls, Grey Wagtails and even a Mandarin Duck.

These are in addition to Long-tailed Tits and Great Spotted Woodpeckers, as well as lots of different kinds of wildlife that aren’t necessarily animals of flight.

This makes Harrogate one of the most diverse areas for bird spotting in North Yorkshire, and a place with lots to offer budding bird watchers and wildlife enthusiasts. We have lots of accommodation within Harrogate, such as No. 7 Regent House which sleeps two, Ravenstone which sleeps six, and Tithe Cottage which sleeps four.

All of our Harrogate properties to let offer something unique and are perfect for a weekend or short stay birdwatching or simply enjoying everything Harrogate has to offer.

Bird Spotting in Scarborough

Much like Saltburn, there are a range of different species that are commonly found by the sea to be spotted at Scarborough.

The Ruddy Turnstone is a popular seabird that features scruffy brown feathers and a rather rotund aesthetic, and one that can commonly be found by the coast of Scarborough. The Great Northern Diver is another water-friendly bird that can be spotted in Scarborough, as well as the Goosander and Purple Sandpiper, all of which regularly hunt on the sea.

Head further inland to the many woodland walks and cycle trails in Scarborough, and you’re likely to stumble across a Goldcrest or ten, or one of the many finches that are frequently spotted in the area.

This makes Scarborough a fantastic place to visit, whether it’s for some fish and chips by the sea, a stunning view, or the wildlife that is on display. 

We provide a range of accommodation in Scarborough and have something to suit everybody. From Bowler’s Retreat @ North Marine House which is ideal for couples, to Central Retreat, a massive accommodation that sleeps nine guests. There are plenty of in-between options too, such as Cottage By The Sea which sleeps four and Sitwell Cottage which sleeps five and has three bedrooms. 

Osmotherly Bird Watching

Osmotherly is nestled in North Yorkshire and is an area where you can truly get away from it all. 

Surrounded by rolling landscapes, nature and the elements, it’s perfect for a relaxing stay away from the hustle and bustle of city life, and a fantastic area to get lost in the great outdoors and discover some delightful wildlife. 

Bird watching is very popular in Osmotherly, and for good reason. More common birds such as the Long-billed Dowitcher and Grey Phalarope can be found in and around the Osmotherly area, not to mention the Dusky Warbler and bird of prey, the White-tailed Eagle. 

There are also lots of opportunities to find a Red Grouse in the area, as well as smaller, colourful birds such as the Meadow Pipit and Mistle Thrush. This makes Osmotherly a great place to visit if you want to take in some beautiful nature trails and walks, as well as some magnificent, rare wildlife. 

We have brilliant places to stay in Osmotherly, from Hill Top Cottage which sleeps two to The Cobbles, a cottage home that sleeps six and has three bedrooms. Our range of accommodation means there’s something for everyone, whether you’re a large family wanting to get away for a short break, a couple, or a solo traveller looking to take advantage of the nature walks and wildlife on offer.

Staithes Bird Spotting

Staithes is another wonderful seaside town and is much less busy than nearby Whitby and Saltburn. This relative gem along the North Yorkshire coast is fantastic for a range of reasons, and bird watching is a primary motivation for people visiting this wonderful little town. 

There are lots of seabirds on show at Staithes, such as the Great Skua that can be regularly seen swooping along the cost landscapes with it’s domineering, wide wingspan and dark feathers. Glaucous Gulls can also be found in Staithes, as well as Kittiwake Seagull if you look closely enough along the cliffs.

But what really sets Staithes apart when it comes to bird spotting, is one of the more popular birds on the planet, the extremely rare but extraordinary Puffin. 

Puffins are frequently spotted in Staithes feasting on fish and other marine invertebrates. They’re a rare species and a favourite among most, thanks to the shape of their wings which allows them to not only fly in the sky but “fly” under the sea. 

This makes them fantastic predators and absolutely fantastic to look at, too.

To spot yourself a puffin, or one of the many other birds on offer at Scarborough, book yourself a trip away with Stay North Yorkshire. From Brunswick Cottage and Gun Gutter House, both sleeping four, to Gull’s Haven Cottage and Cowbar View Cottage, both sleeping six. 

Get in Touch

We provide the finest in serviced apartments and holiday cottages all around the North of England, with something to suit everybody, from birdwatchers to families and everything in between.

Get in touch with our team today to find the perfect getaway in one of the most brilliant areas in the country on 01287 658 171

You can also drop us an email at or browse our website for more of the properties we have available.

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