24th February

Today's keen easterly breeze didn't deter a few more early movers from putting in appearances, with 64 Black-headed Gulls, 3 Shelduck and 2 Common Scoter through off Chesil, a Mistle Thrush at Blacknor, a Meadow Pipit in off the sea at the Bill, 7 Long-tailed Tits at the Obs and a Red-throated Diver through off the Bill. Long-stayers showing off under the sunny skies included 2 Short-eared Owls and 2 Firecrests at the Bill and 2 Great Northern Divers at Ferrybridge.

Long-tailed Tit - Portland Bill, 24th February 2016 © Martin Cade

Ken Dolbear was also on patrol today and reported that the Widow Iris at Broadcroft BC reserve is already in flower:

...as a sign of how advanced the season is this plant was first in full flower on 12th March in both of the last two years, whilst in the late, cold spring of 2013 it wasn't in flower until late April.