Sunday, 29 December 2013

Sunday 29th December 2013

Our visit to the Weymouth area today proved to be pretty good not surprising really with the quality birds that were around.  We started at Lodmoor as planned and checked off most of the common waterfowl our highlight here was Marsh Harrier and views of Cetti's Warbler.  There was good numbers of wintering Lapwing and Snipe scattered around the reserve.

In the end all the group wanted to do was go to Portland Harbour not surprising, so off we went.  On arrival it was obvious that the bird was on view by the gathered crowd of birders intently watching the water in the marina.  Stopping at a convenient spot we scanned the water but it had gone in behind the boats.  Whilst we waited for it to reappear I found the white blob that was the wintering Black Guillemot out in the harbour and got everyone on to it, one down.  Then the Brunnich's came out and slowly dived and surfaced and dived it's way towards us.  It performed better than it had for Jackie and I just two days ago.  We had fabulous views and were able to compare it with a couple of Razorbills feeding in the same area.  Other species seen out in the harbour of note were a single Black-throated Diver and Great Northern Diver.

We finished the day again having a quick look at the Glossy Ibis and Radipole Park which was still feeding on the football pitch.  We said goodby to everyone and on the way to drop Jess off popped into Radipole car park and had a look through the gulls.  We found a number of Black-headed and Mediterranean Gulls with rings so had a ring reading session so hopefully will get some news back soon on where they came from and where they have been.  

I've added a couple of my shot of the Brunnich's can't have too many of a good bird can you?

BrĂ¼nnich's Guillemot - Portland Harbour © Nick Hull

BrĂ¼nnich's Guillemot - Portland Harbour © Nick Hull

Saturday, 28 December 2013

Saturday 28th December 2013

I thought I would delve into the records and see how rare Brunnich's Guillemot is, well there has been 43 accepted records up till the end of 2012.  All but one of these records have been from Scotland and the northern isles. The only English record came from Lancashire of a bird found dead near Morcombe in 1960, and a bird on the Farnes Islands in 1977, so other than these and a very brief sighting from Filey Brigg in East Yorkshire this Autumn which didn't stay very long, this Portland bird is the only mainland English bird to really be twitchable.  Estimates are that over a thousand birders have visited so far and I'm sure that this is under the true number. As we are leading a group in Weymouth tomorrow I'm sure there will be a few more having a look at this high arctic vagrant.

Friday, 27 December 2013

Friday 27th December 2013

After the news breaking yesterday when Debbie & Pete Saunders posted on twitter that they had what they thought was a Brunnich's Guillemot at Osprey Quay Portland Harbour and Jackie and I were stuck entertaining family. We had a suprisingly good nights rest and this morning whilst having breakfast Sean Foote posted that it was still present, we couldn't exit the door fast enough.

On arriving not surprising there were a good few birders already present stretched from the Marina along to Portland Castle.  We started by the castle and shortly after picked up the Black Guillemot out amongst the bouys off the Mulberry Cassons.   
Winer plumaged Black Guillemot Portland Harbour











All the Birders stretched all the way to the marina viewing the Brunnich's




















After sometime we decided to move towards the Marina to get a different view over the harbour, after scanning from here for sometime a guy came running up and said the Brunnich's had just flown in and landed over by the cassons.  Quickly scoping the area I had a brief view of a Guillemot but it dived almost as soon as I got on to it.  This was what happened for the next ten minutes with the bird diving and popping up further away.  Then as quickly as it moved away it appeared right in front of us maybe sixty metres away giving great views it then moved along the breakwater towards the marina.  Where it gave really close views before settling in sheltered water to the rear of a boat and started to preen. 

Brunnich's Guillemot Portland Harbour
















After having our fill of the Brunnich's we popped down to Radipole Park and found the Glossy Ibis feeding on the football pitch giving good views.

Glossy Ibis - Radipole Park, Weymouth


Thursday, 26 December 2013

Thursday 26th December 2013

Well just had to the a message via twitter that a Brunnich's Guilemot can be seen off of Osprey Quay Portland Harbour, It has been showing very well.  This is a Dorset first a real Mega bird and we cannot go until tomorrow. Hope it stays. 

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Tuesday 24th December 2013

All at TwO Owls Birding would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a very successful birding New Year.


Sunday, 22 December 2013

Sunday 22nd December 2013

Leading up to the festive season Dorset birding has been fairly good for the time of year. With the immature Surf Scoter still being seen in Brand's Bay and the two juvenile Common Cranes are still being seen near Cheselbourne though they seem to go missing at times.  A Ring-billed Gull has been putting in appearances at various locations around Poole Harbour and there has been sightings at Radipole which was probably a different bird. The Black Brant remains on the Fleet with it's Northern European counterparts and also being joined with a couple of Pale-bellied Brent as well.  There has been several records of Great Grey Shrike, two around the Morden Bog area with sightings at Hartland Moor, Middlebere and another on private land at Milborne St Andrew.  There has been good numbers of Divers being recorded passing Hengistbury and Portland, all three species visiting Poole harbour.  There has been good numbers of birds of prey being recorded around the Poole harbour, Merlin, Peregrine, Marsh and Hen Harriers all being represented.

As the weather became stormy recently this brought sightings of Little Auk of Hengistbury and Black Guillimot at Portland in the last couple of days.  There has been up to four Snow Bunting being seen at West Bexington though the last report there was only two seen. Also in the west a small flock of Barnacle Geese have arrived in the Rodden Hive area of the Fleet, hard to tell if these are genuine wild birds or from a British feral population but they are still nice birds to see.  Bittern have been seen on and off at both Radipole and Lodmoor so there is plenty of variety out there to be seen so get out there over the holiday period and work that Christmas dinner off,  you could join us at Lodmoor on the 29th there are still a couple of places availible.

Great Northern Diver - Poole Harbour © Nick Hull

Saturday, 14 December 2013

Saturday 14th December 2013

Today Jackie and led a group from the local Poole RSPB group around Longham Lakes.  After we gathered at the Bridge house hotel  we headed off to the lakes.  At this time of year waterfowl and gulls are the main species to look at and of course there was always the chance that the Penduline Tit may be still hanging around.  

As we had a large group we split into two Jackie headed off counterclockwise I went clockwise.  I started with looking through the closest group of duck Wigeon, Teal, Mallard and Gadwall.  Moving on and scanning as we go we added many of the more common species like Robin, Blackbird and Dunnock.  Looking back over the south lake Black-headed, Common and Herrings were also present and someone picked up a small group of four Little Grebe.  Further round Tufted Duck, Shoveler a couple of Grey Heron and a single Little Egret and a few Blue Tits and a Meadow Pipit or two over.  We had a good look around the two small ponds at the south end but found little then a small flock of small finch's with yellow wing bars flew across the high pitched calls identified them as Siskin.  Half way around we met up the Jackie and her group and found they had seen much the same as we had but had found one or two that we hadn't so game on.  I concentrated on the gulls and found the first of these a smart winter plumaged adult Mediterranean Gull in fact I'm pretty sure there were two everyone had good views and we moved on.  On the North lake another we hadn't seen a small group of Pochard and better views of Great Crested Grebes.

We also had good views of Reed Bunting, Buzzard and when we met up with Jackie's group again they added Long-tailed Tits and Green Woodpecker to the list.

Our return to the Bridge House only produced Starlings and the common corvid's but by now we were all looking forward to our Christmas lunch in the restaurant.  In fact we had a side room and a very nice meal a fitting end to a very nice morning.  

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Sunday 8th December 2013

After putting the moth trap out last night (7th) and checking it this morning hoping for a December Moth and drawing a blank, I was thinking I hope the RSPB BirdBoat wouldn't be the same.  Well I have to say that we had lovely weather and a super cruise up the Wareham Channel and back around the harbour's island finishing with views over Brownsea Lagoon.  

As we left Poole Quay and headed towards the Wareham channel amongst the gulls roosting on the marina pontoons were a handful of Turnstone.  There was very little else to see other than a few Cormorants and occasional Brent along the shoreline until we were well up channel.  Here I spotted a distant Marsh Harrier soaring over the forest towards Arne and within minutes a Peregrine came on the scene and then a pair of Raven.  The Peregrine took a dislike to the Harrier and we saw an aerial scrap with full tallons drawn before the harrier moved off.  The Peregrine then made a move on one of the Raven before soaring off high.  Wareham meadows held Lapwing, Greylag Geese, Mute Swan and a few Little Grebe popped up along the reed bed edge, even Bearded Tit appeared for a few flitting across the reedbeds.

Our return back to the harbour added another two Marsh Harrier, a small flock of Black-tailed Godwit, a few Mallard and Wigeon and several flocks of Curlew flew overhead.  As we passed Gold Point and entered the harbour our fourth Marsh Harrier crossed the channel behind and the peacefully roosting Oystercatchers decided to take evasive action and took flight.  Mark called "diver" which turned out to be a Great Northern our only one of the trip.  We crossed what is known to the local fisherman as Balls Lake towards the central harbour.  Here we found Goldeneye, Great Crested and Black-necked Grebe and our first real numbers of Red-breasted Mergansers.

Around the back Green Island we had a large flock of Mergansers and more Goldeneye.  Brand's Bay produced Grebes and at least three Eider but no one found the Surf Scoter so it was around to Brownsea Lagoon it  was crammed full of birds, with over a 1000 Avocets, hundreds of Black-tailed Godwit, Dunlin, Grey Plover and Bar-tailed Godwits.  Stonechat was on the wall, and much further round on the lagoon were 8 Spoonbill and several Grey Herons a great end to the trip and it was back to the Quay.

After a spot of late lunch we headed off towards Cheselbourne to look for the 2 juvenile Common Cranes that have been spending time in a stubble field for a few days.  We found them quite easily in the end as there were a few birders already watching them.  Such beautiful and graceful birds they were delightful to watch, at one time standing together like two very smart garden ornaments!  A brilliant way to finish our day's birding.

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Tuesday 3rd December 2013

Great start to a superb day's birding today, taking Tom and Lynfa around the Poole Harbour and ending at Blashford.  Starting at Studland we walked out to Jerry's Point and scoped across the harbour mouth and Brand's Bay.   Here we had good numbers of Red-breasted Mergansers, Goldeneye and Great Crested Grebe and in mid-harbour were five Eider one at least was an immature drake.  Searching the water off Goathorn I found the immature Surf Scoter our target here and a lifer for our guests, though distant you could see the whitish patches on the face.  Our next location was Knoll beach, scanning the bay we found several groups of Black-necked Grebe counting forty in all, also a couple of Common Scoter.  Then it was off to Middlebere with a leisurely lunch at Corfe Castle on the way.  

Middlebere produced the goods with excellent views of an immature ringtail Hen Harrier quartering the marsh then descending into the cord grass not to reapear again, well at least while we were there.  Just before the hide three male Bullfinch brightened a grey day as they fed together in the thorn bush.  A Stonechat also put in an appearance along the same hedgeline and several Little Egrets were moving around the marsh.  From the hide a male Kestrel was acting as sentinel on a hawthorn out to the left.   Shortly after while we were watching the Avocets, Teal and Wigeon out in the channel a large raptor flew in from the left, this time it was a female Marsh Harrier.   Not long after we had a second bird this time an immature off to the right which crossed heading towards Arne.  During the short time we were in the hide we watched large numbers of Black-tailed Godwits flying over towards the Frome. The usual Yellow-legged Gull sat out on the mud, also a single Grey Plover.  Walking back to the car we had our fourth raptor for the day with a Buzzard.

Time was moving on and we had planed to finish the day at Blashford Lakes and what a good decision    this turned out to be.  Jackie and Lynfa reached the Ivy north hide before myself and Tom and as we arrived they were at the door saying hurry up there's a Bittern showing.  In a channel to the right of the hide was indeed a Bittern looking for it's evening meal and it was on view for maybe fifteen minutes, and it turn out to be another lifer for Tom and Lynfa, a great way to finish a day's birding.

I apologies for the poor photographs but I didn't want to use flash and I couldn't get the speed in the dull light conditions.

Bittern swaying body keeping head motionless














Bittern sneaking away into the reeds

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Sunday 1st december 2013

The start of a new month saw us leading a group around Upton Country Park this afternoon. We knew we wouldn't see anything scarce or rare but it was just nice to get out and see what was around locally.  Walking through the park down to the bay we saw many of the usual parkland birds, Robin, Dunnock, Blackbird, Coal Tit and Goldcrest.  Approaching the site of the old hide we had a Jay one of five seen in the park all very busy burying acorns for the harder months to come. Over the north west part of Holes Bay there were good numbers of waterfowl the most common were Teal and Wigeon with fewer Mallard, Pintail. A single Avocet, several Black-tailed Godwit, Redshank, Curlew, Little Egret and Grey Heron. 

Moving on we passed the pond, where we had close views of an immature drake Shoveler.  From the stone bench we had closer views of the Teal, with a few Pintail.  Following the woodland path through to the north east section of Holes Bay, despite the very low tide we found plenty more waterfowl.  In the distance we could see some white backs moving back and forth in the main channel, Spoonbills.  We moved further round to gain better views and to our surprise there were eleven of them, not just the usual heads tucked under wing motionless, they were actively feeding and preening. On the mud were a large number of Common Redshanks, with a fewer number of Dunlin and Black-tailed Godwits.

On the way back along the path a few Starlings caught our attention, then we found a few Redwings nearby as two Mistle Thrush flew noisly over us.  

Immature drake Shoveler on the park Pond

Lucky to get a digi shot of these three Spoonbill they were so distant

Friday, 29 November 2013

Friday 29th November 2013

There have been few good photographs of the Penduline Tit but Sean Foote has managed some pretty good video, though not in the best light condition but well worth a look at this super little bird feeding on a bullrush head. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WWd9Z-WBxuQ&sns=em

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Wednesday 27th November 2013

Well what a nice find, Jackie though rather unwell took a group around Longham Lakes yesterday (26th) during their walk they came across a small bird in one of the reed beds which was thought to have been a Bearded Tit at first, but unfortunately it disappeared not to be seen again and Jackie only had a brief view. Jackie had doubts about the id it looked to small and short tailed to be a Reedling and after consulted a reference at home she realised and confirmed what she had thought that it was a first winter Penduline Tit.  We put the news out to the local birding community with the proviso that it was only a tentative identification.

Unfortunately Jackie was to unwell to go this morning, so off I went to try and confirm her sighting.  When I arrived there were very few people present but I ran into Chris Parnell who watches the patch regularly and he said he'd found it in the bullrushes by the pond at the south end of the south lake, and it was a Penduline Tit.  

When I arrived at the location Kevin Lane the County Recorder was already in situ and hadn't seen it.  So we started checking out all the stands of bullrush and as we were doing so Liz, Rick, Jackie and Kit Ellis arrived.  With so many eye's looking every movement was seen and investigated and after a little while Kevin called and said it just flew over his head and landed into the reeds in the corner of the pond and within seconds we were all on this super little bird and it gave good views as it flitting and fed from reed heads.

This is the only shot I managed to get


Sunday, 24 November 2013

Sunday 24th November 2013

Spent the morning leading a group at Normandy Marsh, Lymington, a rather pleasant walk though nothing too much out of the ordinary, but then thats not what it's all about.  Though as we were waiting for our last member to arrive I noticed seven white swans flying pretty high going over south towards the Isle of Wight.  I can only put them down as being probably Whooper Swan as their structure wasn't right for Mute or Bewick's unfortunately they didn't stop and were soon out of view.  Well we couldn't stand and worry about what we may have missed.  So we headed off, first we stopped to look over the main channel towards Inchmary.   Here we found many of the common waterfowl one would expect in this saltmarsh habitat, Brent Goose, Shelduck, Teal, Wigeon, Ringed Plover, Turnstone, Curlew and Redshank.  We hadn't gone far when Fran said "I've a Kingfisher" then "oh its gone" but it soon reappeared see distant photograph below.

Looking over Normandy lagoon there were much the same species either feeding or roosting.  We still managed to add a few more to the day list with Greenshank, Spotted Redshank, Little Grebe and Tufted Duck.  We had twelve Skylark then a handful of Meadow Pipits lifted of the marsh and headed over us climbing alway towards the south.  We assumed these birds were migrants that had dropped in earlier in the morning and had just set off again after a feed and rest. Bob found a Sparrowhawk that posed long enough for us all to have excellent scope views, and our second raptor was found shortly after this time a female Kestrel came in and rested on a post. 

There was little out on the Solent other than a couple of Red-breasted Mergansers and a Great Crested Grebe, though there were lots of small sailing dingys which probably moved the seaduck further down the Solent. There was nothing new on Oxey Lake so we headed inland along the footpath to Normandy Lane where we usually find some winter thrushes but not today.  We had a large flock of Curlew with a few Black-tailed Godwit and a large Starling flock feeding in the back fields.  I managed to put my Audubon birdcall to good use bringing out a beautiful Goldcrest, to see who was making this high pitched squeak, giving excellent close views.  With a group of Dunnock a couple of Jays and we had now completed out circuit  

We might not have had anything scarce or rare but what we had was nice assortment of all the common wintering species and very good views of all and a super walk with good company. Thanks to all and hope to see you all soon. 

One of possibly 3 Kingfisher seen this morning

A few of the many grazing Wigeon on the marsh this morning

Friday, 22 November 2013

Friday 22nd November 2013

It appears the autumn vis mig is now over, and as the winds this year never really blew from the right direction for the Poole Harbour area meant this was one of the poorest years for visual migration for many years.  On a brighter side the immature Surf Scoter can still be found in Brand's Bay along with up to three Great Northern Divers and a Black-throated Diver.  There is now twenty seven Spoonbill wintering and this morning fifteen were seen in Lytchett Bay but later after being disturbed joined twelve others in Holes Bay.  On Wednesday (20th) a Great White Egret was reported at Middlebere and over Wareham Moors this is a species we would like on our harbour list but keeps eluding us.

Shaun Robson managed today to get a photograph or two of a group of Eleven Spoonbill in Lytchett Bay before they were disturbed by Wildfowlers shooting duck.

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Sunday 17th November 2013

Out this morning with the Sunday monthly group on Studland starting at South Haven then at Redhorn Quay finishing with a walk down to Greenlands Farm.

There was little out in Poole Bay mainly Cormorants and Shags though we did have eleven Sanderling fly out of the harbour and land on the beach. Viewing into the harbour we were put onto a diver by Steve Smith which turned out to be a Black-throated Diver.  A migrating flock of Goldfinch went over as did a single Grey Wagtail though the latter returned a little later and landed on the beach. Off Goathorn there was another diver this time a Great Northern also just to its left were four Black-necked Grebe.  Scanning the area with scopes we soon added Red-breasted Mergansers, Goldeneye, Little Egret, Dark-bellied Brents, Oystercatchers and Curlew. 

Moving on to Redhorn Quay and viewing over Brand's Bay towards Goathorn we quickly found the immature Surf Scoter.  Unfortunately just as I was getting my digiscoping kit out it decided to fly off  across to the South Deep just off Brownsea, which was a bit too far away for a few to see it in detail.  Shortly after Jackie called "Great Northern Diver, just there, just off the point" (photo below), it dived so I quickly moved with the camera in hand to the end of the point, took a low profile and waited for it to surface and managed a few reasonable shots. It was still present when we left so nobody in our group should miss id this species again.  Scanning the bay there were good numbers of waterfowl with Goldeneye, Red-breasted Merganser, Brent, Shelduck, Pintail, Wigeon, Teal. there was a scattering of waders too with Redshank, Curlew, Black-tailed Godwit and a few Turnstone.  Liz found some Grey Plover and in with them, on a small spartina islet, were a few Dunlin and half dozen Knot.  We were just thinking of moving on when a chuckle from a Fieldfare was heard, looking up there was fifty-one flying over towards Greenlands where we headed off next.

Walking along the towards Greenland Farm we came across many of the usual common species Dunnock, Robin a mixed flock of feeding corvids, a small tit flock, Goldcrest or two calling and a couple of distant Buzzard.  A little ways further on Liz picked up a handfull of Fieldfare in the top of an Oak which promptly  flew off.  Though a little further on we had a Song Thrush then more Fieldfare, then a single Redwing put in an appearance.  On the fields there were good numbers of Meadow Pipit, Pied Wagtails and a single Mistle Thrush.

Great Northern Diver - Brand's Bay Poole Harbour


Friday, 15 November 2013

Wednesday 13th November 2013

Out at 07:00 this morning hoping for a little vismig, for the first three quarters of an hour it was just a case of recording the local birds. Then around 07:40 three flocks of Woodpigeon moved south toward Rockley and Purbeck I then spotted a flock moving west. Like on Sunday I stood on the bench to give me a better northerly view, and almost immediately saw another large flock moving west and others followed until it petered out around 08:30. Again as with Sunday they were passing in a line north of Upton over Limberlost heading towards Lytchett Minster there were flocks further north too far away to count.
Nick

07:00-08:30hrs
Vis Mig
Woodpigeon - 3800+ (106 of which went going South) 
Stock Dove - 72 west
Starling - 45+ west
Song Thrush - 4 west
Fieldfare - 1 north
Redwing - 16 west
Siskin - 3 west
Chaffinch - 10 west
Skylark - 1 pos 2 heard going over.
thrush sp. 12 (prob Redwing)
Finch sp. 20 (prob Siskin)

Local Birds
Robin - 6
Blackbird - 5
Cetti's - 3
Water Rail - 5 calling.
Wigeon - 33
Teal - 91+
Black-tailed Godwit - 24
Raven - 2

Sunday, 10 November 2013

a.m. Sunday 10th November 2013

Well this morning Jackie and I was out at 07:00hrs standing in the cold at Border Road just down the road.  As this area is the best on the patch for vis mig and this morning proved just that.  It started slow with the odd Chaffich, Goldfinch a Reed Bunting or two a Bullfinch a few Meadow Pipits a flock of Starlings and a few Woodpigeon moving over.  About 07:30 the Woodpigeon flocks started to get bigger from small flocks of 10-20 to flocks of 80-100 then Jackie said "oh well look at that" and looking north there was a flock of around 1000+ birds moving west.  For the next half and hour or so large flocks were moving over on a pretty broad front that was in our view from over Rockly Point to Limberlost flocks were moving west.  Our largest flock we estimated at around 2500-3000 the movement was almost continuous for that half hour.  It started to ease around 08:00hrs so we gave it another 15 minutes then went home for breakfast.

Sorry the photograph isn't very good digi shot but it should give you an idea of the flock sizes as they passed us.




  

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Thursday 7th November 2013

Got the message that a Surf Scoter had been found by Paul Morton in Brands Bay, Studland, threw birding gear into the car and set off as quickly as speed limits and traffic allowed.  Zoomed past the viewpoint on the Studland road and saw Paul getting out his car, quick turnaround to have a word to make sure we were going to right spot.

We arrived at 11.30, perfect as we had a lunch date in Poole at 12.30, then just a walk down to meet Steve Smith and Graham Armstrong who were already watching the bird.  And what a bird, a great Poole Harbour tick for us, and though fairly distant in the scope on 60x we had very good views.   A Black-necked Grebe appeared just in front of it, then a Great Northern Diver not far behind it.  Soon after Nick picked up a Red-throated Diver flying towards the harbour entrance but it flew round and landed in Bramble Bush Bay.  Also a few Red-breasted Mergansers and Goldeneye, and bizarrely a pair of Great Crested Grebe displaying!

On the heath while walking to and from the viewpoint we had Dartford Warbler, Stonechats and Meadow Pipits but we had no time to stop and stare, we had to get that 12.10 ferry.

To a few photographs of this bird go to Steve Smiths blog:-
 http://birdingpooleharbourandbeyond.blogspot.co.uk

p.m. Saturday 2nd November 2013

After have a pretty successful morning and having nothing planned for the afternoon Jackie and I decided to head off after the juvenile Sabine's Gull that had been frequenting the area of Cogden Beach west of Abbotsbury.  Along with Jess, who decided to accompany us, we arrived at Cogden around 13.00hrs and walked down to the beach. We ran into James Phillips who kindly directed us to where we needed to be.  A few minutes later we joined a handful of birders trying to locate it as it had just flown off with some Black-headed Gulls over the sea.  It wasn't a long wait before it flew back over the recently cultivated field and excellent views were had of this pelagic gull. 

Local birder and photographer Peter Moore took some excellent photograph of this bird the one below being just a single example, for more shots of this gull go to Peter's own blog where you can see more excellent shots of this bird. http://petermooreblog.blogspot.co.uk/ 

Sabine's Gull- Cogden Beach © Peter Moore

a.m. Saturday 2nd November 2013

For our visit to Durlston Country Park we arrived at 7.10hrs with birds already passing over, by  07.30hrs everyone was assembled at the end of Long Meadow for an introduction to Vis Mig the birders shortened version of visual migration.  This is something that can be very addictive to many birders in the autumn and there are few places that do as well as Durlston on a good day when the weather condition are right.  Unfortunately though we had nice weather the wind direction wasn't perfect but for the beginner starting out it was ideal, it wasn't too manic with thousands of birds passing over.  In fact it turned out to be a finch morning and ended with a scarce warbler, a Yellow-browed Warbler.  Thanks to Jess who spoke to a friend of ours, Ian Lewis, who was ringing there that morning, he kindly waited an extra couple of minutes so everyone could have a view of this little eastern gem.

Yellow-browed Warbler - Durlston CP. © Nick Hull




















For an hour and a half we listened and watched and counted the following:-
Goldfinch- 360
Meadow Pipit - 11
Pied Wagtail - 29
Redpoll - 4
Linnet - 85
Chaffinch - 88
Siskin - 75
Swallow - 6
Song Thrush - 2
Redwing - 1
Blackbird - 1
Starling - 11
Skylark - 1+
Greenfinch - 4
Great Spotted Woodpecker - 1

Other plus grounded species
Common Buzzard
Sparrowhawk - 1+
Peregrine - 1 pair
Kestrel - 2
Green Woodpecker - 2
Yellow-browed Warbler - 1 in the hand
Goldcrest - several
Firecrest - 1 heard
Bullfinch - 3
Wren, Dunnock, Robin, House Sparrow, Blue & Great Tit.

Out to Sea
There was very little usual Black-headed, Herring Gulls, Great Black-back Gulls, a distant Kittiwake and a very distant Gannet, two Razorbills on the sea close inshore.