10th October

Lovely birding conditions - heavily overcast skies and a gentle northwesterly through the morning giving way to blazing sunshine and warmth by the afternoon - and a nicely varied selection of typical mid-October migrants today. Overdue newcomers included two firsts for the season - a Yellow-browed Warbler at Tout Quarry and a Dartford Warbler at the Bill - whilst the likes of three Bramblings, two each of Short-eared Owl and Mistle Thrush and singles of Merlin, Great Spotted Woodpecker and Ring Ouzel at the Bill were all nice list-fillers. Among the commoner migrants there was a good totals of at least 500 alba wagtails and 42 Siskins overhead at the Bill, where 120 Wood Pigeons and 22 Stock Doves were surprise early movers and off-passage Linnets totalled more than 700; not before time, the odd few single Goldcrests begun to show up around and about, whilst a couple of late single Redstarts were of note. Despite seemingly unhelpful conditions the sea continued to produced, with 16 Balearic Shearwaters and an Arctic Skua through off the Bill where the Little Gull lingered for another day.

The first Dartford Warbler of the autumn in that most predicable spot for them at the bottom of the Slopes © Roger Hewitt:

Another little spread of Wheatears featured amongst the day's commoner migrants © Martin King (top) and James Phillips (bottom):

The beautifully millpond calm and cloudless late afternoon gradually gave way to a lovely multi-layered dusk this evening © Martin King: