Back to Blog

1st March 2020

Wildlife Watching North Yorkshire Coast

We love to champion the diversity of our region’s natural environments in of all their many and unique forms and work hard to showcase just how vital it is for us to protect local wildlife.

At Cottage Escapes, we incorporate environmental management into everyday business and our team seek the highest standard of excellence in environmental practice. We have always placed an emphasis on making positive changes where possible in respect to energy, waste, environment and conservation and leave areas of Thirley Cotes Farm ‘rough and wild’ to welcome woolly, winged and furry friends, as well plant trees, shrubs and flowers that provide food and shelter.

There’s also plenty of places perfect for wildlife watching dotted along the North Yorkshire Coast.

RSPB Bempton Cliffs

The neighbouring shoreline is home to the UK’s largest mainland seabird colony and the Seabird Centre at RSPB Bempton Cliffs is the gateway to this incredible wildlife spectacle. Each year, around half a million seabirds nest here, including the locally-loved gannet and puffin, with their smart black and white plumage, comical walk and bright orange beaks. The quantity and diversity of species labels the colony of international importance, however they are at risk due climate change, the demise of the fishing industry and pollution (all thought to be contributing to a decline in numbers). It is hoped that RSPB monitoring over the past decade will identify trends and help conservation organisations protect precious seabirds for future generations.

RSPB Bempton is home to puffins and a fantastic place for wildlife watching along the North Yorkshire Coast. Look down on the nests from atop of the chalk cliffs or take a boat ride from Bridlington and watch them dive into the water beside you as they hunt for sand eels to feed to their pufflings. Plan your trip between March and July when the birds are breeding, as after this, they fly out to sea, where they remain for the rest of the year. It is also one of the very few sites that gannets can be spotted during breeding season. When at sea, these large long-necked white birds often travel in small groups and feed by plunging into the depths. Boat trips to see both puffins and gannets run from May – July.

Harwood Dale

There’s nothing more awe inspiring than watching a barn owl silently glide across the darkening sky and they are prevalent across the North Yorkshire countryside. August is the best time to spot our resident Barn Owls at Thirley Cotes Farm. Look on evenings or after heavy rain when they hunt.

North Yorks Moors

Roe Deer are the smallest native deer in Europe and are so well camouflaged that often, you will only catch a quick flash of a white rump as their rust-red coat blends into the wilderness. The forests that flank the Cleveland Hills and North York Moors are good places for wildlife watching close to the North Yorkshire Coast and the best time to spot Roe Deer is early morning in the autumn and winter.

North Yorkshire Coast

The shorelines of Whitby and Saltburn are great for whale and sea life spotting and home to minke, fin, sei, pilot, humpbacks, porpoise and dolphins. From June until October/November, white-beaked dolphins and minke whales follow the shoals of North Sea mackerel and herring swimming south from the Arctic and make a spectacular sight. While at Ravenscar, the colony of around 300 seals will be nourishing their pups throughout June and July and you can spot grey seals in November.

As our guest you have a very important role to play in helping us support our wild residents and surroundings and become a more sustainable destination. Please enjoy and respect our areas of natural beauty and neighbouring grounds and scenery.

Related Articles