25th April

Not the sort that day that had been hoped for with the break down in the weather producing no surprises at all and considerably fewer migrants than we'd got used to through the week. What small arrival there was consisted largely of a sprinkle of Willow Warblers and Blackcaps, together with ones and twos of a fair range of typical fare amongst which singles of Turtle Dove and Grasshopper Warbler at the Bill were about the best on offer. Wader numbers did receive quite a boost, with the 56 Dunlin, 12 Ringed Plover, 4 Whimbrel and 3 Sanderling at Ferrybridge hopefully the beginning of the build-up toward the customary May rush. Rewards were still hard to come by on the sea, with passing waders and terns in conspicuously short supply; 100 Manx Shearwaters, 8 Great Skuas, 3 Arctic Skuas and singles of Red-throated Diver, Black-throated Diver and Great Northern Diver provided the best of the interest at the Bill.

An arrival of immigrant lepidoptera seems to be gathering pace, with 5 Silver Ys caught overnight at the Obs and the Grove, and at least 6 Painted Ladys and several Red Admirals and Clouded Yellows by day at sites throughout the island.

Whitethroat and Clouded Yellow - Southwell and Portland Bill, 25th April 2015 © Pete Saunders (Whitethroat) and Phyl England (Clouded Yellow)

Wader passage is beginning to feature both by day and at night, with Nick Hopper's most recent nocturnal recording session at the Obs a couple of nights ago coming up with 5 batches of Whimbrel calls, 4 Common Sandpipers, 3 batches of Dunlin calls and 1 Ringed Plover (as well as 2 quite late Song Thrushes); Nick's sent us through a nice recording from the early hours of both Whimbrel and Common Sandpiper calling overhead: