9th October

By the afternoon the intensity of today's warmth and sunshine was such that it didn't seem like there'd been any change in conditions but a bit of murk in the sky at dawn had done the trick and dropped a better arrival of typical October migrants, amongst which at least 17 Ring Ouzels were of particular note; the first handful of Redwings and Fieldfares were also logged, along with a small arrival of Song Thrushes. Stonechats again hovered around the 40 mark at the Bill where an uptick in grounded Blackcaps and Chiffchaffs was also evident but the day's numbers were once again overhead, with Bill totals from the morning that included 1000 Meadow Pipits, 550 Linnets, 380 Pied Wagtails, 175 Siskins, 125 Goldfinches, 94 Wood Pigeons and 20 Greenfinches; elsewhere, 8 Crossbills passed over at Easton, a Tree Sparrow was suspected to be lingering in the Coombefield area, a Firecrest was at Thumb Lane and the Grey Phalarope was still about although had moved back off Chesil. Despite the millpond calm sea there was a fair bit of movement offshore that included 440 Mediterranean Gulls, 116 Kittiwakes, 46 Common Scoter and 3 Balearic Shearwaters through off the Bill.

One of the day's Ring Ouzels at Suckthumb © Roger Hewitt

Whilst the bird vismig has been ticking along nicely in recent days, almost under the radar there have been even greater numbers of Red Admirals on the move. Their inexorable southbound passage has been taking place on such a broad front across the island that it's been impossible to enumerate save to say it must number in the many thousands - we've done a whole series of spot counts both in the Grove/Broadcroft area yesterday and at the Bill today that have varied from fewer than one a minute to more than six a minute; today we even took to scanning skyward (...it was very pleasant - verging on the soporific in fact - doing that up on top of West Cliffs) and regularly spotted single butterflies motoring past so high up that they couldn't be resolved with the naked eye © Martin Cade: