6th August

A constantly gloriously sunny day spoilt only by the near gale force strength of the westerlies; however, it was certainly a day to forget on the birding front with 2 Balearic Shearwaters through off the Bill and a Great Skua over Ferrybridge the sum total of interest.

The out of context Bonxie over Ferrybridge was getting a bit of its own medicine from one of the local Great Black-backs © Debby Saunders:

Having had such a good run of island firsts and interesting immigrants and dispersers we thought we'd more or less run out of superlatives for this summer's mothing happenings. However, nothing had prepared us for the unmistakable sight of the hugely engorged Y-mark of a Stephens' Gem in one of this morning's Obs moth-traps - not only a first for Portland and Dorset but also just the fifth record for Britain. To boot, this is a moth with a home range confined to the Americas which makes it an all the more staggering occurrence: hitherto, our highlight of the year had been the sight of a much-wanted Rose Plume in one of the traps a couple of weekends ago but we're guessing that had only strayed a couple of hundred miles from northern France to get here - Stephens' Gem really is in an entirely different league! © Martin Cade: