15th March

The Alpine Swifts still weren't flying for us but in most other respects the outlook suddenly looked a lot rosier as a little flurry of early migrants hinted at passage at last gathering some momentum. Wheatear was the feature bird of the day with a good 50 at the Bill and a likely three figure total for the island as a whole; an overflying Iceland Gull provided some overdue quality at the Bill, where 2 Black Redstarts, 2 Firecrests and a handful of Chiffchaffs were scattered on the ground. Visible passage was far from heavy but did include amongst the trickle of Meadow Pipits and alba wagtails singles of Skylark, Sand Martin and Brambling at the Bill and a Bullfinch at Easton. Despite a promising waft of southeastly the sea was the poor relation with little more than 10 Red-throated Divers through off the Bill; additionally, several Sandwich Terns were dotted about Portland Harbour and Ferrybridge, and the 4 Eider were still in residence at the former.