26th March

Overnight rain cleared through soon after dawn to leave of day of clear skies and a brisk north-westerly. Hopes for the rain dropping a few birds largely came to nothing, although the small arrival of 25 Chiffchaffs and 10 Wheatears at the Bill were accompanied by the spring's first 2 Willow Warblers (although see below for an earlier record that escaped human consciousness), 2 new Firecrests (2 lingerers were also still present there), a Lapwing and a Blackcap. The Bill's first Sandwich Tern of the year was the pick of the morning's sea passage, which otherwise included little more than 10 Brent Geese and 6 Red-throated Divers. The only news from elsewhere was of a Black Redstart at Penn's Weare.

Stonechat - Portland Bill, 26th March 2015 © Martin Cade

...our breeding male rubicola-ish Stonechat is now back on territory for his fourth successive year.

And further to yesterday's nocturnal sounds update, Nick Hopper's been back in touch with some news from his scrutiny of the sound files for the rest of the night before last, which came up with a real surprise in the form of a pre-dawn (5.20am) Spotted Redshank:

...as we mentioned above, there was another worthwhile addition to the night's events when a passing Willow Warbler was recorded a few minutes before the Spotted Redshank.