30th March

Such as been the snail's pace of this spring's early passage that today's pretty modest little arrival seemed like a bit of a season's opener - at least in terms of getting amongst some birds on the ground. In pleasant conditions coverage extended to some fairly off the beaten track areas where finds largely reflected numbers from the day's census at the Bill that had come up with 100 Chiffchaffs, 15 Wheatears, 8 Firecrests, 2 each of Short-eared Owl, White Wagtail, Blackcap and Willow Warbler, and singles of Redwing and Long-tailed Tit; elsewhere, the first 2 Sanderlings of the year were at Ferrybridge. Visible passage was patchy but included a peak of 300 Meadow Pipits per hour north along West Cliffs and 3 House Martins - another first for the year - over the Bill. Seawatching was scarcely worth the effort, with singles of Red-throated Diver off the Bill and Great Skua off Chesil the best of a bad job.

Sanderling and Little Egrets - Ferrybridge, 30th March 2016  © Martin Cade