6th May

The quiet conditions of the last few days continued and, for the first time this month, delivered a nicely varied drop of new arrivals around the centre and south of the island. A Bee-eater that pitched up for a few minutes at the Obs was the highlight, but amongst the commoner migrants a strong showing of 30 Garden Warblers was nice and only topped in the day's tally by the 40 Willow Warblers; other totals included 18 Sedge Warblers, 13 Spotted Flycatchers, 10 Whinchats, 12 Wheatears, 5 Reed Warblers and 2 Little Egrets. The sea had its moments, with 102 commic terns, 4 Red-throated Divers, 2 Great Northern Divers, 2 Arctic Skuas and a Pomarine Skua through off the Bill, but waders were disappointing with little more of interest beyond 4 Sanderling at Ferrybridge and 2 Turnstones and a Common Sandpiper at the Bill.

What a change there's been in the status of Bee-eater at Portland: the first for the island in 1964 was the only one logged during that decade and there followed just one record during the 1970s and three during the 1980s; today's bird, however, takes the island tally to 58 and the species is now an expected annual visitor here © Martin Cade:

The best ringing day for over a week at the Obs and Culverwell - in fact easily the best fall of migrants so far this month: 62 birds of 15 species incl what for spring is an excellent catch of 10 Sedge Warblers

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— Portland Bird Observatory (@portlandbirdobs.bsky.social) May 6, 2024 at 22:50