Over recent winters this area, between Rufforth & Acomb, centered on SE5452, has proved to be a leading site for Gulls in the north where experts regularly find Glaucous, Iceland and Caspian Gulls. A visit is worthwhile for the spectacle of some 20,000 Gulls alone.
Possible species in winter include most Gulls as well as chances of Short Eared Owl, Buzzard, Merlin, Peregrine, Green Sandpiper, Wagtails, Lapwing & Golden Plover. The tip is being landscaped and in summer flora is improving on the north side off the cycle track with increasing number of butterflies.
There is NO ACCESS to the Working Tip but Gulls can be seen in the surrounding fields and on parts of the airfield where they rest, preen and loaf about. The sites used can be very fluid depending on the standing water, crops and whims of the birds. The fields used can be on any side of the tip and can be out of sight and reach but with luck either side of the B1224 are favourite as well as west of the tip off the cycle track east of Rufforth (SE534536) and north of the A59 off Newlands Lane (SE544540) where they rest after visiting a local shooting pond to bath.
Parking is not recommended on the busy B1224 but there are lay-bys on either side of the road after the A1237 at (SE552514 & SE548515). Parking is allowed just within the first access to the airfield perimeter road at (SE544513)but do not proceed further than 100 yards or block the access that leads to the farms. There is also a small parking area off the main roadway to the tip from where you can walk 500 yards towards the north on the tarmac road to meet the tarmac cycle track where you bear left back towards Rufforth.
By Peter Watson, March 2016