2nd November

Although the sound of the raging wind overnight and the sight of mountainous seas at dawn suggested Storm Ciarán was throwing everything possible at us its slightly unconventional track delivered the bulk of its accompanying wrecked seabirds further east up the Channel, with Portland not living up to its usual billing as one of the country's best sites for storm-driven Leach's Petrels. That's not to say that the stalwarts braving the elements went entirely unrewarded, but 5 Leach's through at Ferrybridge, 2 at Chesil Cove and a single off the Bill represented a poorer than expected return from a 70+ mph gale in early November. In fact, displaced seabirds hardly featured, with a rather lame back-up tally of just a Storm Petrel at Chesil Cove, single Arctic Skuas at the Cove and Portland Harbour and precious few Kittiwakes anywhere. The day's only other reports were of a Merlin at the Bill, 3 Great Northern Divers in Portland Harbour and 12 Pintail through at Ferrybridge.

Bird-wise, Storm Ciarán didn't really produce the goods even if the wild seascape might have suggested otherwise © Nick Hopper:

Ferrybridge and Portland Harbour usually provide the best of the Leach's Petrel photo opportunities during wild weather and today the former obliged © Pete Saunders:

This summer-plumaged Great Northern Diver was an unexpected sight at Portland Harbour © Nick Hopper...

...where an Arctic Skua and a Kittiwake were wrecked © Joe Stockwell:

This flock of Pintail passed over at Ferrybridge © Pete Saunders: