14th October

The forecast chill that set in after yesterday's rain had cleared through was nowhere near as brutal as anticipated, in fact by the middle of the day in pretty well unbroken sunshine it felt pleasantly warm. The change in the weather didn't produce anything like the arrival of grounded migrants that might have been hoped but a Little Bunting trapped in the Crown Estate Field was another welcome scarcity and in tandem with the recapture of the Radde's Warbler from a couple of days ago - along with sightings of a Monarch butterfly and a Vagrant Emperor dragonfly at the Bill and a Crimson Speckled moth at Church Ope Cove - certainly added some sparkle to proceedings. The day's numbers were all overhead, where a strong passage of seasonable regulars over the Bill included 1200 Meadow Pipits, 430 Siskins, 385 Linnets, 330 Goldfinches, 285 Pied Wagtails, 72 Redpolls, 64 Chaffinches, 36 Skylarks, 25 Reed Buntings, 15 Greenfinches and singles of Merlin, Woodlark and Tree Pipit amongst others. It was far and away quieter on the ground but the light spread of new arrivals at the Bill did include 3 Golden Plovers, a Short-eared Owl and a late Reed Warbler. The sea returned to normal with a tally of 850 Mediterranean Gulls, 320 Kittiwakes, 288 Great Black-backed Gulls (another 250 were settled ashore), 5 Balearic Shearwaters, a Sooty Shearwater and an Arctic Skua through off the Bill.

Portland's got a pretty good track record with Little Buntings, today's bird being the 24th for the island © Martin Cade:

One of the three Golden Plovers that dropped in late in the day at the Bill © Steve Mansfield:

What with all yesterday's sea events we didn't get round to an 'out-of-pot' photograph of the Crimson Speckled but it sat nicely today © Martin Cade...

...and per a Facebook posting, another was found today at Church Ope Cove: