3rd February

With the best part of the day a wash-out the only reports were of 5 Red-throated Divers through off the Bill, 11 Purple Sandpipers, 2 Short-eared Owls and a Firecrest still at the Bill, the Blackcap still at Wakeham and 11 Black-necked Grebes, 7 Razorbills and a Black-throated Diver in Portland Harbour.

Black-throated Diver and Razorbill in Portland Harbour this morning © Pete Saunders (BtDiver) and Debby Saunders (Razorbill): 

And from a couple of evenings ago the Southwell Barn Owl © Pete Saunders: 

And back to yesterday for an event that we've only got round to sorting out today. Around midday we were roped into running an errand at St Peter's Church at the Grove and whilst there a sudden commotion developed amongst the local gulls and crows; the source of alarm materialised as a large-ish raptor but with no binoculars to hand and the bird largely obscured behind trees we couldn't resolve much more than it looked to be an accipiter; by the time we'd run back to the car for some optics the bird had gained height and was already getting pretty distant but we did snatch a very brief bit of video of it. The clip was so short and the bird so small on the screen that on review we more or less dismissed it as unidentifiable and got back to what we were doing at the church. It wasn't until this morning that we remembered the episode and took a look at the video on a proper screen - to which the immediate reaction was 'blimey, it's a Goshawk!' The sequence below starts with the few seconds that the bird was in view at normal speed, followed by a quarter speed slow-motion of the same clip: