20th September

We don't doubt that eventually our day will come, but for the time being there's many a UK bird observatory doing an awful lot better than Portland! Our contribution to the burgeoning list of rarities filling the country could hardly have been more insignificant: a solitary Wryneck new in at the Bill being the sum total; at a more local level interest came in the form of a Black Guillemot (re)appearing in Portland Harbour, 2 Little Stints still at Ferrybridge, a Great Spotted Woodpecker at Pennsylvania Castle, an Osprey heading off south over the Bill and single Firecrests at the Bill and Broadcroft. A small arrival of Chiffchaffs - numbering maybe 100 over the island as a whole - was of note on the ground, where Meadow Pipits were liberally scattered - upwards of 1000 - everywhere, whilst overhead hirundines numbered well into the umpteen thousands but were impossible to quantify in full given the limited visibility in the murky, very humid conditions. The day's totals of some routine migrants, whilst hardly constituting a fall, showed a slight improvement on recent days and included the likes of 9 Goldcrests and 8 Spotted Flycatchers at the Bill.

Moth immigration remained at a low ebb, with singles of Olive-tree Pearl at Sweethill and European Corn-borer at the Obs the best of offer from overnight trapping.

Wryneck - Portland Bill, 20th September 2104 © Joe Stockwell