21st March

Barring a likely Alpine Swift that flew in off the sea at the Bill but couldn't quite be clinched by its sole observer the day again belonged to Firecrests, with at least 5 at the Bill and 4 at Avalanche Road. Other migrants didn't fare too badly, with overnight rain dropping totals of 40 Chiffchaffs, 25 Wheatears, 4 Blackcaps, the season's first Willow Warbler and other singles of Merlin, White Wagtail and Goldcrest at the Bill, along with a good few more of the same elsewhere. The sea belonged to Red-throated Divers, with a decent passage of 35 through off the Bill; considering their good showing more might have been expected from other early movers, but in the event 14 Brent Geese, a trickle of Common Scoter and Kittiwakes, 3 Manx Shearwaters and the first Puffin of the year was all that could be mustered at the Bill.

It looks like there'll be another Barn Owl breeding attempt this year in the traditional spot at the Verne Moat © Andy Luckhurst: