24th August

A better feel today with the breeze having shifted firmly into the east but the rewards were still very much on the lean side for late August. At the Bill lingering hirundines were still plentiful and a late pulse of 50 Swifts was noteworthy but on the ground only Yellow Wagtail (40), Wheatear and Tree Pipit managed double figure totals of between 10 and 40 apiece; 3 Pied Flycatchers, a Marsh Harrier and a Grasshopper Warbler provided the only minor quality there, with elsewhere singles of Snipe and Pied Flycatcher were at the Grove and singles of Knot and Redshank were amongst the waders at Ferrybridge. Conditions were less than ideal for the seawatchers so 7 Balearic Shearwaters and a Storm Petrel were a bonus off the Bill.

We wouldn't have been surprised to be featuring a photo of something like the year's first Wryneck today but, sadly, it was a struggle to get beyond the likes of Wheatear © Geoff Orton...

...and Redshank © Pete Saunders:

A 'yellow' Clouded Yellow for comparison with yesterday's helice individual © Geoff Orton:

After the influx of Small Marbleds earlier in the summer it's not been a surprise to hear that larvae have been found at several sites in Dorset; we've only had a cursory look at the Fleabane in the Bill area and haven't noticed any feeding signs but the rich, dark colours of the moth trapped overnight at the Obs suggest that it may well have been locally bred  © Martin Cade: