8th August

A return to last week's weather - dreary, increasingly windy and occasionally damp - did nothing on the passerine front at the Bill, where 25 Wheatears, single figure totals of Sedge and Willow Warblers, 2 Garden Warblers and singles of Grey Wagtail and Reed Warbler made up the tally of arrivals. The conditions did favour waders, with 160 Ringed Plovers and 86 Dunlin respectable totals from Ferrybridge. Four Storm Petrels through off the Bill were the best from the sea, with 27 Common Scoter, 16 Shoveler, 12 Manx Shearwaters, 5 Arctic Skuas and 3 Balearic Shearwaters also through there.

Last night's moth-trapping did produce a couple of faintly encouraging signs of migratory activity perhaps picking up (see below). Sadly for the stalwarts manning the traps during our absence last week  migrant activity was extremely subdued but one nice find for them was this freakishly dark aberration of Scalloped Oak; we have recorded one or two similar example in the past so this peculiar form isn't entirely unknown at Portland but it's certainly super smart © Martin Cade: