18th April

Advances in our fortunes have been incremental to say the least but today's subtle shift in wind direction from northeast to northwest brought with it a small improvement in migrant numbers and variety. Single Cuckoos singing at Southwell and heading north at the Bill were the first this year, whilst single Pied Flycatchers - at Thumb Lane and Portland Castle - were popular; numbers included 50 each of Wheatear and Willow Warbler on the ground at the Bill and Swallows passing through at a rate of a few dozen per hour by the afternoon. Also worth a mention were at least one Red Kite that did a tour of the island, 3 Whinchats at the Bill, 2 Yellow Wagtails and a Tree Pipit overhead at Fancy's Farm and 4 Arctic Skuas, 2 Red-throated Divers and a single Great Skua through off the Bill.

The odd single Pied Flycatchers that have popped up here and there so far this spring have been very good at passing over the Bill and successfully finding the little patches of habitat that most match their ultimate destinations - this one was in the tiny but ever-reliable clump of trees at Thumb Lane © Duncan Walbridge:

The day's 'blink and you nearly missed it' Kite was of the Red variety © Martin Cade: