18th March

Seemingly propitious fall conditions - a heavy cloud cover and a light offshore breeze - delivered the first good arrival of the spring although such was the speed with which the migrants touched down and then moved straight off that it necessitated an early start to fully appreciate just how many had made landfall. Chiffchaffs made up the bulk of the numbers on the ground, with 300 through at the Bill and a good spread elsewhere; amongst the also-rans, 23 Redwings and 10 Blackbirds pitched in briefly at the Bill, whilst the tally of oddities around the south of the island included 5 White Wagtails, 3 new Black Redstarts, 3 Firecrests, a Merlin, a Fieldfare and a Corn Bunting. If there was a loser in the numbers stakes it was most certainly Wheatear: a grand total of just one was all that could be found at the Bill where many dozens might have been expected given the prevailing conditions; no more than half a dozen were reported throughout the rest of the island. As the morning went on Meadow Pipits in particular were arriving in off the sea in quantity but coverage of visible passage was patchy at best and no meaningful totals been received thus far; a curiosity amongst the other visible migrants were another 9 Ravens arriving from the south at the Bill - the third such event so far this spring.