28th December

With the strength of the wind having put a constant spoiler on mothing opportunities in recent nights there was considerable anticipation for what was forecast to be a quieter night; in the event the window of opportunity was fairly brief - but just enough for the Obs moth-traps to strike with some decent quality of presumably far-flung African origin: the chief prize was the island's fifth - and Britain's ca24th - Levant Blackneck, with back-up in the form of 2 Eyed Veneer Euchromius ocellea (taking the island total of the latter to 33); commoner immigrants included 4 Rush Veneer, 3 Rusty-dot Pearl, 2 Small Mottled Willows and a Silver Y at the Obs and singles of Diamond-back Moth and Rusty-dot Pearl at the Grove. Additional to the moths, a Red Admiral butterfly was on the wing at Blacknor.

Bird-wise, the best of the bunch was a reported Black Guillemot off Portland Castle. Two Razorbills, a Great Northern Diver and a Kittiwake were at Ferrybridge, winterers included a Black Redstart at Portland Castle, 2 Goldcrests at Southwell and a Firecrest at the Obs, whilst 6 Common Scoter, 3 Brent Geese and a Red-throated Diver passed through off the Bill.

Levant Blackneck, Eyed Veneer and Razorbills - Portland Bill and Ferrybridge, 28th December 2015 © Martin Cade (the moths), Debby Saunders (settled Razorbills) and Pete Saunders (flying Razorbill)
Also thanks to Nick Stantiford for a photo of one of yesterday's Short-eared Owls over his garden at Southwell: