22nd November

A reminder that the next In Focus field event at the Obs takes place between 10am and 4pm this Tuesday, 24th November 2015.

A perfect late autumn birding day with plenty of variety making the most of crisp, clear and still conditions. As might have been expected not a great deal was grounded, with 50 new Blackbirds the most noteworthy arrivals at the Bill; ringing evidence also indicated that a few of the Chiffchaffs and Goldcrests that were present in small numbers in all the areas of cover that were visited were also new in. Lingerers on the ground included 3 Short-eared Owls and 2 Firecrests at the Bill and 2 Black Redstarts at Blacknor. Overhead, Wood Pigeons fizzled out as quickly as they'd started, with 3800 over the middle of the island and just 300 at the Bill, whilst Starlings included 500 over Blacknor, but it was really variety that was the feature, with most of the thrushes, finches and other typical late migrants represented; a sample one hour count from the middle of the island that came up with the likes of 62 Redwings, 50 Chaffinches, 33 Linnets, 11 Goldfinches, 8 Fieldfares, 5 Meadow Pipits, 4 Bramblings and ones and twos of other expected fare was typical of the situation everywhere. Sea passage perked up just a little, with 45 Common Scoter, 14 Red-throated Divers, 10 Brent Geese, a Teal and a Curlew through off the Bill; 7 Black-necked Grebes were also still in Portland Harbour.