3rd September

A reminder for PBO members: this year's Annual General Meeting will take place as a virtual meeting at 7pm on Saturday 12th September 2020; an agenda for the meeting and details of how to attend can be viewed by clicking on the link HERE; supporting documents available to view/download: Accounts for 2019 and Minutes of the 2nd AGM

A day that started out miserably with strong gusts and a heavy fret meant even the most enthusiastic locals found themselves dragging their feet. The discovery of a fresh migrant Reed Warbler in the only remaining Tree Mallow at the Bill Quarry was not quite the catalyst needed to stir the birders from their tea; this came shortly after as the news of two Sabine's Gulls at Ferrybridge broke and birders battled their way over the shingle into the howling salt spray to see the lingering juvenile (the adult was seen disappearing south before the majority of people arrived). Whilst the gull happily lingered around the surf, it was joined by a Storm Petrel skipping lightly over the waves; watchers at Chesil Cove were promptly joined by the same or another close in Storm Petrel being harassed and almost eaten by the local gulls. The excitement continued at the northern end of the island as the afternoon tide exposed the mud outside the Ferrybridge visitor centre luring in an Avocet, closely followed by the first Curlew Sandpiper of the autumn. Grounded passerines hardly featured, with a lone Pied Flycatcher the only migrant ringed at the Obs. News was also received - without a precise location but with a confirmatory photograph - from a member of the public of a juvenile Rosy Starling frequenting gardens in the centre of the island.

A somewhat less dramatic rendition of the opening scene of Saving Private Ryan occurred as a small swarm of birders battled their way over Chesil Beach, laden by binoculars, cameras and telescopes into the teeth of the driving wind and salt spray. Although the Sabine's Gull performed beautifully the real drama came as the Storm Petrel narrowly avoided becoming a lunch time snack ©
Martin Cade

This afternoon's Avocet and Curlew Sandpiper at Ferrybridge © Debby Saunders: