22nd May

The Great Spotted Cuckoo has been proving trickier to catch up with in recent days, but it continued to surface in a seemingly ever more unpredictable fashion anywhere between the Obs and Reap Lane. Another little arrival of tardy migrants included 5 Chiffchaffs, 3 Reed Warblers, 2 Spotted Flycatchers and singles of Turtle Dove, Yellow Wagtail, Whitethroat, Blackcap and Siskin at the Bill, whilst odds and ends still on the move out to sea there included 9 Common Scoter, 3 each of Arctic Skua and Great Skua, and a single Great Northern Diver.

Turtle Dove - Portland Bill, 22nd May 2016 © Martin Cade

And when we downloaded this Turtle Dove sequence we realised there was quite a bit of video we hadn't even got round to looking at of the Great Spotted Cuckoo on its first visit to the Obs garden last Sunday so we've edited together a bit of that as a little memory of the event:

...as this was an Obs garden tick we thought that for a bit of fun we ought to tot up the all-time 'in and from' the Obs list. There are a few records from before our time that we're not sure about - we'll have to check with old-stagers like Beryl Clafton and Grahame Walbridge to ascertain whether the likes of Rough-legged Buzzard and Upland Sandpiper were actually seen from the Obs - and we haven't included a few dodgy 'imports/relocateds' such as Scops Owl and Desert Warbler, but it seems like the total's currently on at least 304. We can't think where in the UK there'd be a garden with a total to match that but we're sure someone will let us know pretty sharpish if there is.