6th September

A downpour at dawn and its subsequent cloud cover offered optimism without reward today. The day continued to be dominated by high-flying finches, pipits and wagtails, with the Siskin tally just topping triple figures. The main new addition was the first signs of Meadow Pipit passage as small flocks of calling birds were seen heading out to sea, amounting to 52 individuals. Grey and Yellow Wagtails maintained their current form with 30 and 15 respectively overhead. On the ground, a small increase in Chiffchaffs were joined by three Pied Flycatchers and a singles of Sedge and Reed Warbler. The sea was fractionally more entertaining that recent days with 27 Balearic Shearwaters throughout the morning, accompanied by three Guillemots and five Razorbills. Elsewhere on the island, a Little Stint at Ferrybridge provided the island highlight, whilst smatterings of single Pied Flycatchers lurked in the tree-covered recesses of the middle of the island.

It was a fiery dawn but the day's birding was far from red-hot © Peter Morgan:

By this stage in the autumn we really ought to be posting photos of 'proper' migrants - chats, warblers, buntings and the like - so it seems a bit like an admission of defeat to have to post another wader; not that there's anything wrong with a Little Stint - they're great - but juvenile waders are hardly the most challenging of subjects since they invariably do dim things like walk towards you and even kiddie kit like ours can come up with some fair results © Martin Cade:

One of Portland's more painted arachnids, the Wasp Spider had become an expected feature of recent autumns but whether it's the current weather or the wet and windy winter, the spider has been almost entirely absent from its usual haunts around the Obs. This large lady was at Suckthumb Quarry and is the only individual we've managed to find on the island this autumn © Erin Taylor: