12th March

Clearer, chillier conditions overnight weren't conducive to dropping a great deal in the way of newcomers, and weekend visitors were reduced to scratching around for scraps rather than wading though a carpet of migrants. The mix of old and new at the Bill included 7 Redwings, 3 Black Redstarts, 3 Chiffchaffs, 2 Short-eared Owls, 2 Firecrests and singles of Golden Plover, Grey Wagtail, Dartford Warbler and Goldcrest, with an unquantified dribble of mainly Meadow Pipits and alba wagtails on the move overhead. Sea passage included 54 Black-headed Gulls off Chesil and 2 Red-throated Divers off both Chesil and the Bill; a Slavonian Grebe settled off Chesil was different to yesterday's individual there, whilst singles of Black-throated Diver and Common Scoter were still in Portland Harbour.

Peregrine - Portland Bill, 12th March 2016 © Roger Hewitt

As might be expected at this time of year, it's been pretty quiet on the ringing front; however, today did see the first 'control' of the year: a Goldfinch which a quick check revealed had first been ringed in Weymouth - by Ian Dodd in his garden at Littlesea - on 15th October last year:

...fortunately, our ageing of this individual concurred with Ian's: it was a first-year last October and was a second-year today (such things aren't necessarily a given, since ageing isn't always the exact science that some folk would like you to believe - we have plenty of cases amongst the recoveries and controls on our books of birds that have apparently exhibited a peculiar Benjamin Button-esque trait of ageing in reverse!):