27th October

Another incursion of very mild air made for pleasant birding and, with persistence, some decent rewards today; the list of oddities was more varied than of late but once again didn't reflect a general increase in numbers, for it remained quiet on the ground. Long-stayers still on view included the Black Guillemot off Portland Castle and the Yellow-browed Warbler at Avalanche Road, another Yellow-browed Warbler - together with a presumed Siberian Chiffchaff - was at Tilleycombe and a likely 'eastern' Lesser Whitethroat at the former Weston Craft Centre, whilst late in the day a Red-breasted Flycatcher popped up briefly in a private garden at Weston; a Dartford Warbler trapped and ringed in the Crown Estate Field and a Long-tailed Skua through on the sea were the day's best offerings at the Bill. Grounded arrivals were only very thinly spread, with little worth remarking on bar a Firecrest and the lingering Reed Warbler at the Bill, a Great Spotted Woodpecker at Pennsylvania Castle and 2 Black Redstarts at Castletown. It was busier overhead where there was initial southbound passage at the Bill, where a sample count came up with 570 Goldfinches, 350 Linnets, 70 Chaffinches, 29 alba wagtails, 2 Siskins and a Merlin, before some later passage in the opposite direction included several sizeable groups of Jackdaws. Ferrybridge goose numbers continued to increase, with 2260 Dark-bellied Brents counted today; the lingering Common Tern also remained there and 32 Common Scoter, 2 Arctic Skuas, a Great Skua and a Pomarine Skua passed though off the Bill.

Whilst no more numerous than on other recent sunny days, Red Admirals, Painted Ladys and Clouded Yellows were all on the wing in small numbers at the Bill. Overnight moth-trapping revealed a small increase in immigrant numbers, with 19 Rusty-dot Pearl, 2 each of Pearly Underwing and Silver Y, and singles of Diamond-back Moth, Rush Veneer, Olive-tree Pearl, Delicate and Flame Brocade at the Obs.

Common Tern - Ferrybridge, 27th October 2104 © Pete Saunders