25th April

The unrelenting blasting easterly remained firmly established but, with a bit of searching or perseverance, there were migrants about or on the move and the day's tally eventually had some respectability about it. Wheatear was the most numerous passerine migrant by some margin on the ground, with more than 100 at the Bill alone; Willow Warbler aside, few other species made a double figure total but 7 Whinchats was a worthwhile tally at the Bill where lingering singles of Redstart and Pied Flycatcher were also still about. Downed waders included 78 Bar-tailed Godwits at Ferrybridge. Visible passage was considerably more conspicuous, particuarly along West Cliffs where 13 Yellow Wagtails, 2 Hobbys and a Snipe were the best of it amongst the steady procession of Swifts, hirundines, Meadow Pipits and finches. The sea started very slowly before perking up in the late afternoon/evening, with final totals that included 140 Bar-tailed Godwits, 123 Manx Shearwaters, 5 Arctic Skuas, a Great Northern Diver and a Great Skua off the Bill and 214 Bar-tailed Godwits and 3 Arctic Skuas off Chesil; 3 Little Gulls also passed over at Ferrybridge.

The majority of Gannets as immature as this one remain way south so the odd ones that do venture northwards stand out like a sore thumb amongst the mainly adults and sub-adults in Portland waters at this time of year - this one was off Chesil and the Bill this morning © Pete Saunders:

Two of the Little Gulls over Ferrybridge this morning © Pete Saunders:

The waders on the move over Chesil later in the day were becoming increasing stratospheric as the evening wore on and we wouldn't mind betting we missed a fair few that were just too high to notice - Whimbrels, Bar-tailed Godwits & Grey Plovers and c110 Bar-tailed Godwits (with a couple of smaller waders - maybe Knot?) © Martin Cade