Film ID:
YFA 98



Visitor Tabs


Made in October, 1950, this film features the Bird Observatory at Spurn Point.  Members of the working party examine and ring many of the birds as well as record their observations. 

Title – The Spurn Bird Observatory October 22nd 1950
Filmed by Charles J. Chislett
Spurn Peninsula is over three miles in length and often less than a hundred yards in breadth.   

The film begins with long shots of Spurn Point and the sea.  Fishermen are on beach, and the lighthouse can also be seen.  

Title – The Cottage:  Headquarters of the working party which on this occasion consisted of R. Chislett, H.G. Brownlow, K.E.L. Simmons, J.B. Nelson, J. Leadall and Mrs. Chislett 

Sign – Spurn Ringing Station Committee for Ornithology 

The members of the party pose at the side of the building before they head off.   

Title – The ‘Heligoland’ trap, into which birds are driven, was built by G.H. Ainsworth (Hon. Sec.) 

The working party trap birds in Heligoland traps.  The birds fly in one end and are removed at the other, ringed and released.   

Title – The trap leads to a trapping box from which birds are extracted through a stocking top 

There are shots of the ringing hut.  

Title – In the ringing-hut British Museum Rings are used and recorded 

Details of the birds are recorded and entered into a ledger. 

Title – Wing Formula Examination 

The wings of a bird are examined and results compared to a reference book.   

Title – Removing a tick from side of blackbird’s eye for scientific examination  

The tick is carefully removed from the bird’s eye with a set of tweezers.  The bird is then released from the examiner’s hand.  The working party make their way back up to the hut to examine other birds.   

Title – Ring-ousel 

Title – Chaffinch 

The working party holds up different types of birds which are identified by the titles.  They then set them free again after they’ve been tagged.   

Title – An unusual Exhibit! 

Jokingly, one of the working party appears to take the head off a bird.  However, it’s only a trick of the camera, and the bird is unharmed. 

Title – A Goldcrest which feinted but flew.  (Considered too small for ringing) 

Title – Black-Redstart 

Title – At high tide ducks and waders gather on the sheltered shore of the peninsula 

With the shore at high tide, the working party watches the birds with telescopes and binoculars. 

Title – 44 Starlings in at once! 

One of the working party members is back at the hut with the Starlings flying around.   

Title – This catch calls fore the black box and collecting cage.  In all 92 birds were ringed in the day 

Title – Preparations for the evening meal are in the safe hands of Miss Carrie Leonard 

A Carrie Leonard is shown feeding some hens. 

Title – The end of the day. 

The film ends with sunset over the sea