23rd October

A pretty testing day with the always brisk easterly freshening to well beyond gale force after midday ahead of rain approaching across the Channel. Although it looked to be relatively quiet on the ground the rewards for sticking with it came during the afternoon when a Pallas's Warbler dropped in at the Obs; a Long-eared Owl that had been seen several times in flight there during the morning was also finally pinned down during the afternoon as it moved between increasingly wind-swept roosting spots. The day's only other scarcities were the long-staying Hen Harrier at the Bill and a Yellow-browed Warbler at Blacknor. Most of the day's routine passage was overhead, with Wood Pigeons, Starlings, Jackdaws and a variety of thrushes and finches through in some quantity at the Bill.

The Pallas's Warbler was the rarity highlight of the day...

...although for looks the Long-eared Owl ran it a pretty close second:

Visible passage wasn't easy to census with a steady passage of mainly small flocks of Wood Pigeons, Starlings and Jackdaws scooting through low and on a broadish front into the blasting easterly:

Goldfinches, Linnets and Chaffinches accounted for most of the day's finch movement; Redpolls have been almost absent this autumn, whilst in marked contrast to last autumn Siskins haven't been at all plentiful - and they've as often been represented by singletons as they have the more usual small flocks: