24th March

Today's chilly headwind, sunny skies and bank of towering shower clouds to the north created perfect 'fair weather fall' conditions at the Bill, where Chiffchaffs in particular were moving through in some quantity for a few hours after dawn; the logged total of c200 looked likely to have been very much a minimum, with many birds barely touching down as they hurried through. Variety was otherwise still pretty limited, with 35 Wheatears, 15 Wood Pigeons, 6 Song Thrushes, 4 Firecrests (including 2 new arrivals), 3 Purple Sandpipers, 2 Black Redstarts, 2 Blackcaps and singles of Sand Martin, Redwing, Goldcrest and Bullfinch the best on offer at the Bill; additions elsewhere included 2 Black Redstarts at Blacknor, a Firecrest at Barleycrates Lane and a Sanderling at Ferrybridge. On the water there was a surprise reappearance by the Black Guillemot off Portland Castle (it's been looked for but not seen quite often in recent days) but conditions were again far from favourable for the seawatchers, with 23 Common Scoter through off the Bill and 9 Brent Geese, 3 Red-throated Divers and 2 each of Common Scoter, Tufted Duck and Red-breasted Merganser passing Chesil.