Kayakers disturb nesting gannets at RSPB Bempton Cliffs - police warn to stay away

Police have warned visitors to keep a safe distance from nesting seabirds after reports of disturbances on the Yorkshire Coast.

Friday, 9th July 2021, 10:30 am
Updated Friday, 9th July 2021, 11:03 am
Two kayakers were spotted venturing too close to the base of the cliffs.
Two kayakers were spotted venturing too close to the base of the cliffs.

Humberside Police's Rural Task Force received a report from RSPB Bempton Cliffs of kayakers venturing too close to the cliff edges and disturbing nesting gannets on Monday.

The disturbance caused the gannets to flee, exposing their nests.

Gannets are the UK's largest seabird and rear just one chick a year and are the last to leave the colony at the end of the breeding season.

Disturbances can cause chicks to leave the cliff face before they are ready, reducing their chances of survival and impacting on successful breeding seasons for the protected seabirds.

A police spokesperson said: "All seabirds are sensitive to disturbance. Please keep a safe distance from the base of the cliffs (more than 100 metres) and if any seabirds respond to your presence move away quietly."