30th December

Another lovely day but another limited array of sightings: 3 each of Red-throated Diver and Common Scoter together with a single Brent Goose passed through off the Bill, 2 Goldcrests and a Chiffchaff were at East Weare and 3 Eider were again in Portland Harbour.

Being unable to stick more than a few hours at a time catching up with end of year paperwork/writing the annual report we've taken to having little spells out in the current fine weather meandering around underwatched parts of the island in the hope of bumping into a wintering Wallcreeper/Siberian Accentor/Eastern Black Redstart. Today's excursion took us to East Weare which is about as off the beaten track as you can get - largely because most of it's either out of bounds or tricky to access: after the Royal Navy departed the island the whole of their land holding was sold off for a song to Portland Port who have to this day retained the boundary fences they inherited hundreds of metres to the south of the active harbour facilities...

...aside from some limited light industrial use the area within this fence looks to have some cracking habitat including what by Portland standards qualifies of extensive woodland - goodness knows what must turn up in here at migration times:

Today we didn't manage any better than tape-luring a Long-tailed Tit flock - together with 2 Goldcrests and a Chiffchaff - out of the private area and left rather frustrated at not having been able to get nearer to the best looking spots. On getting back to the clifftop the group of introduced British Primitive goats were visible far below: