4th April

It's been a long time coming but finally there was a coincidence of a pulse of nocturnal migration with suitable weather conditions for a fall that saw the south of the island busy with grounded migrants; the dawn arrival of phylloscs was of fair proportions, with the arrival overhead of heavy cloud cover later in the day downing a secondary flurry of mainly Blackcaps. There was precious little coverage of the centre and north of the island, but the southern third was graced with the totals of 250 Willow Warblers and 75-100 each of both Blackcap and Chiffchaff; Wheatears were again surprisingly thin on the ground, but further variety came in the form of 4 each of Redwing and Redstart, 2 each of Whitethroat and Siskin, and singles of Hobby, Short-eared Owl (an arriving migrant that was additional to 1 or more winterers still about), Grey Wagtail, Garden Warbler, Bullfinch and Reed Bunting. Diurnal migrants weren't so well represented, although the trickle of hirundines was slightly more conspicuous than in recent days. As forecast, after the overnight rain had passed through the light breeze shifted back toward the north which killed off sea passage: 3 Red-throated Divers, a Black-throated Diver and a Manx Shearwater were the only worthwhile sightings off the Bill. Two Mute Swans were new at Ferrybridge.

Two more Dark Sword Grass were the only immigrant moths trapped overnight at the Obs.

Being always sniffy about claims of early Hobbys we were really pleased to be given a photo of the bird that by the look of it only just about managed to make landfall at the Bill this afternoon © Phil and Linda Cooper:

April seems to be one of the best months for wandering Mute Swans at Portland - these two were at Ferrybridge today © Matt Phipps:

The pair of Siskins at Southwell © Nick Stantiford:

And finally, yesterday's Gadwall off Chesil - a species that, hardly surprisingly, is rather camera-shy at Portland © Joe Stockwell: