27th April

On a cool but not nearly so unpleasant day as yesterday there was slightly more about on the ground and, even though hirundines in particular were poorly represented, more on the move overhead. At the Bill both Blackcap and Willow Warbler got up to or beyond 50 but there was little else in quantity; 4 Redstarts, 3 Common Sandpipers, 2 each of WhinchatReed Warbler and Lesser Whitethroat and singles of Snipe, Black RedstartGrasshopper Warbler and Firecrest were the pick of the less common migrants there, with the likes of a Cuckoo at Southwell and singles of Grey Plover and Common Sandpiper at Ferrybridge of note elsewhere. Overhead, a sample one hour count on West Cliffs came up with 80 Goldfinches, 6 Yellow Wagtails and 2 Swifts but many other expected species barely featured; elsewhere, a Little Ringed Plover headed north over Blacknor and singles of Hobby and Short-eared Owl arrived in-off at the Bill. The sea was still quiet, with no more than 30 commic terns, 17 Whimbrel, 2 Red-throated Divers and an Arctic Skua through off the Bill; singles of Black-throated Diver and Great Northern Diver remained in Portland Harbour.

Common Sandpipers and Wheatear - Portland Bill and Ferrybridge, 27th April 2016 © Richard Phillips (Common Sands settled at the Bill), Pete Saunders (Common Sand flying at Ferrybridge) and Debby Saunders (Wheatear)

...and thanks to Martin King for his quick-fire shots of our all too regularly visiting Sparrowhawk stealing away another hapless migrant: