24th March

A fair bit more interest today although you had to be on your toes to catch up with any of real quality. With the conditions getting more summer-like by the day it was no surprise when a Hoopoe was called in, although it proved to be no more than an almost subliminal fly-by at Verne Common; 3 Red Kites should have proved more visible but even they passed straight through over the centre of the island and escaped the attention of almost everyone, as did the Corn Bunting overflying at Weston. On the common migrant front there was a slight improvement in numbers on the ground, with 25 Wheatears, 15 Chiffchaffs, 5 Black Redstarts and a Bullfinch new at the Bill, another 3 Black Redstarts at Tout Quarry and a Brambling dropped in at Easton; 8 Purple Sandpipers and 3 Short-eared Owls were also lingerers worth a mention at the Bill. Overhead passage continued apace, with 700 more Meadow Pipits through along West Cliffs where the first House Martin of the season was the best of the rest. Red-throated Diver was the feature bird on the sea, with 40 through off the Bill where passage was otherwise very uneventful.

We've had active Badger setts in the Obs garden for several years but this often escapes the attention of visitors since the animals are invariably strictly nocturnal, only venturing out in twilight once the nights shorten as summer approaches © Jodie Henderson: