25th November

The first frosty dawn of the season gave way to a day of unbroken sunshine and in just the lightest of breezes it was very pleasant to be out birding. Unfortunately, migrant numbers were less than impressive, with 10 Black-tailed Godwits at Ferrybridge and 2 Siskins, a Blackcap and a Brambling at the Bill as good as it got for new arrivals. Wintering fare included singles of Merlin and Short-eared Owl at the Bill, 5 Red-throated Divers through on the sea there, 4 Black-necked Grebes, 2 Great Northern Divers and the Goosander in Portland Harbour and 520 Dark-bellied Brents, 4 Shelduck, 2 Pale-bellied Brents and 2 Bar-tailed Godwits at Ferrybridge. 

Any Black-tailed Godwits are a good record at Portland but these ten turning up in mid-winter at Ferrybridge were quite unexpected © Debby Saunders:

American Golden Plover is a weirdly really rare bird in Dorset - there's only ever been one at Portland and if we remember rightly there hasn't been a see-able bird amongst the handful of other county records - so it was well worth popping over to Lodmoor this afternoon for a look at the one found there today. It was a surprisingly subtle bird - OK if you were specifically looking for it but no doubt very easy to pass over if you only gave a big flock of Golden Plovers a cursory scan; nice to see and a good find by ?Daragh Croxson © Martin Cade: