Sunday, 29 May 2016

NGB Spurn Weekend Day 4

Oh boy, was today hard work. Birds on the sea were reduced to a limited stream of Auks, and the highlights were five Eider that settled and then headed south. With news of a nightjar at the obs the enduring watchers all gave up and headed up, but there was no sign of the bird when I arrived. Since I was back, I settled in to wait for the weather to warm up in the hope that something would pop out of the bushes.
By 11.00 in the morning I decided to go to Wetlands to have a look at the Little Terns again. For unclear reasons I decided to head up by Beacon Lane, probably so I could check the Triangle again for anything. Of course, there was nothing. Wandering up Beacon Lane I had spoken to a few birders about how hard the days birding had been, and that nobody had gotten much at all. I was just thinking about going home that evening whilst walking up Beacon Lane when I glanced left and there, right there, sat next to me was a male Red-backed Shrike. I was stunned, the canal bird was still present so far a I knew, so this had to be a new bird. I diddnt have time to process these thoughts as the bird saw me the moment I saw it, and in a flash it was gone behind the bushes.
It took 20 mins before I managed to relocate it, but the sheer sense of relief when I did. I managed to get a text to Tim Jones that I had an RB Shrike but I had lost it. Now I had it again all I had to do was check for rings. It was unringed, and this was seconded by Tim Sexey who joined me as he had walked down Beacon Lane birding. This must be a new shrike then, and as such is my first ever self found scarce drift migrant. What a moment, and a stunning bird too.
Sadly only Tim and I saw it, as it dropped into bushes not long after and was not seen again on Beacon Lane, although I read on the website that it moved to Rose Cottage in the late afternoon. Really brought the best out of the day.
-Red-backed Shrike (Self found)
The ponds were quiet, only 10 Little Terns present, and no waders of any note. On Wetlands there was a White Wagtail which was a nice addition to the weekend list. There were also three very young Avocet chicks along the edge of the shoreline quite close, allowing me to get fantastic views of them. What little cuties.
Despite the Shrike, it could not persuade me to stay, especially with the northerlies set to continue and get stronger, meaning even fewer birds around. I decided to head home that evening, to spend my last few days at uni actually at uni. Especially since now I will be working at Spurn again for the next three months on little tern wardening as a result of the current warden getting a job at Blacktoft. Excited would be an understatement. 

Sightings List:
Spurn: Canal and Warren: Eider, Common Teal, Gannet, Linnet, Mallard, Meadow Pipit, Blackbird, Herring Gull, Swallow, House Martin, Blue Tit, Dunnock, Common Scoter, Guillemot, Razorbill, Sanderling, Kittiwake, Oystercatcher, Cuckoo, Yellow Wagtail, Greenfinch, Sedge Warbler, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Shelduck, House Sparrow,
Spurn: Beacon Lane, Beacon Ponds and Kilnsea Wetlands: Chaffinch, Starling, Blackbird, House Sparrow, Woodpigeon, Swallow, Lesser Whitethroat, Red-backed Shrike. Avocet, Little Egret, Carrion Crow, Linnet, Whitethroat, Shelduck, Skylark, Reed Bunting, Dunlin, Gadwall, Meadow Pipit, Sand Martin, Ringed Plover, Little Tern, Pied Wagtail, White Wagtail, Oystercatcher, Sandwich Tern, 

Saturday, 28 May 2016

NGB Spurn Weekend Day 3

The first day with any NGBs actually on site. Of course I headed up to numpties first. The sea was like a millpond, incredibly flat. the only time that changed was when a Porpoise breached the surface, which they frequently did. The total count at the evening log was of 12 individuals roaming around offshore. For birds moving on the sea, not so many. Auks were moving in a few good numbers, including my first Puffins of the year, MY 200th SPECIES OF 2016 (!!!), and a Red-breasted Merganser going North. So there was some variety, just not very many species. Bizarrely for May there had been 700 Brent Geese still on the Humber as of Friday, but there was something of a clear-out this morning, as at least 200 birds headed off out to sea.
-Brent Geese
Perhaps one of the highlights of the weekend was the stunning male Grey Wagtail that was caught whilst we were up at Numpties. In the hand you really got a different perspective on this really beautiful species, for example I never noticed the white markings around the face. What a beautiful bird.
-Grey Wagtail
Yesterdays Red-backed Shrike continued to perform along the canal, but the rarest new birds were a pair of Turtle Dove that Steve found behind the Crown. I jumped in Tims car and we raced up but we had only just left the Warren when news changed that they were now heading south. We swiftly pulled up in time for the doves to fly straight over out heads. We thought that was that but they then circled round and landed on the wires above the Warren before continuing south towards Lincolnshire.
-Turtle Dove
Considering how badly I wanted this species at the start of the year, to have seen four individuals at different points has really been something. These were probably the best view I have had so far, such lovely birds.
Without a radio it was less tempting to go out hunting for birds on the off chance something rare turned up and I ended up missing it. As a result I stayed around the Warren for most of the morning, and this reaped rewards when a dark headed Yellow Wagtail went overhead. I can't claim to know much about Yellow Wagtail subspecies, but this was clearly something. Tim managed to get a good shot of it in flight, but thats when the real problems started. It obviously lacks a Supercillum, seemingly ruling out flava. However, the sub-moustachial stripe seems to rule out thunbergi, and then there is the issue of its apparent chest band. The popular school of thought seems to be a flava x thunbergi hybrid type, but in reality we will never really know the birds ancestors. Also at the Warren was a very smart micro moth chilling on my scope. If anyone has any suggestions to its identification that would be appreciated.
-Probable flava x thunbergi
-Micro-moth sp. 
The winds had looked good, but the bushes were very quiet. The only birds in any real numbers were Spotted Flycatchers, with 18 seen over the day. My wanderings around the canal were fruitless, and with nothing seeming to happen I went for a nap. Not long after I had re-awoken I received a text about 2 Crossbill heading north, so rushed outside on the off chance that they might go over the obs. I yelled to Sims, who was also in the Obs, that they were coming and we waited outside. As soon as we were outside Ollie started about how there was zero chance we were going to see them, and that they could be anywhere. I told him in no uncertain terms, to hush up so I could hear, and that he clearly did not know Spurn well enough. I wish I could have appreciated the dead silence when one Crossbill came over the Obs not 60 seconds later, calling frantically. It then looped and landed in the tree at the back of the Obs, for a short time before it flew off North again. More interestingly was that this was a different bird to the two that had been reported. Still, another yeartick for me. What a result that was. 

Sightings List:
Spurn: Canal and Warren: Swallow, House Sparrow, Great Tit, Carrion Crow, Spotted Flycatcher, Greylag Goose, Little Tern, Sandwich Tern, Bar-tailed Godwit, Gannet, Gadwall, Mallard, Mute Swan, Meadow Pipit, Collard Dove, Magpie, Cormorant, Avocet, Oystercatcher, Kittiwake, Starling, Fulmar, Brent Goose, Common Scoter, Little Egret, Red-breasted Merganser, Goldfinch, Feral Pigeon, Tufted Duck, Sanderling, Skylark, Yellow Wagtail, Swift, Linnet, Red-throated Diver, House Martin, Razorbill, Black-headed Gull, Common Teal, Chaffinch, Puffin, Black Tern, Common Tern, Turtle Dove, Barn Owl, Crossbill

Friday, 27 May 2016

NGB Spurn Weekend Day 2

My first full day at Spurn. It started steady, dipping the black brant, but then got to see a Garden Warbler in the hand as compensation. A few birds moving on the sea, including my first Arctic Tern on the year, bringing me so close to 200. Then the radio crackled into life and the morning really kicked off. It happened that a Red-breasted Flycatcher had been found in the Crown car park, so I piled into Steves car and we raced up. There was a feeling of deja vu as I arrived to the news that it had just gone, flown across into Cliff Farm. A similar story to the one I missed at mig-fest. Whilst everyone else tried to find it from the road, I wandered down the canal and after waiting it did finally sit out. I whilstled the others but by the time they arrived the bird, which proved tricky all day, dived back into the bushes. It was some time before it remerged too, leaving me hoping I had not cocked it up. Thankfully it did come out and when it sat out I was able to get some record shots. However, the early morning gloom made it diffiuclt, and the bird was very tricky, and hard to follow. It continued to show all day but the first views in Cliff Farm sound like the best of it. Another lifer for the weekend for me.
-Red-breasted Flycatcher
I could have watched it longer, but the time was cut short by news a male Red-backed Shrike had been caught at the Warren. Once again I piled into Steves car and we raced down. In the hand the shrike was absolutely stunning, obviously. An adult male shrike is always fantastic but to see it up close you could really appreciate it, an incredibly handsome bird to say the least. Undoubtedly one of the many highlights of the week. I mean, what more can I say. Awesome...
-Red backed Shrike
After release the bird continued to show nicely along the canal. The day was warming up, so I decided to make a move up to the ponds via beacon lane to see if there was anything up there. I got very little on the way up, but once at ponds and wetlands there was a few things about, including Tufted Duck, Knot, Black and Bar-tailed Godwit flybys. Obviously the Little Terns were still there, with 12 sitting out on the shoreline. But the real highlight, and the best bird I found up until the Sunday was a flyby Velvet Scoter. I picked up a duck at sea, mid distance, but from long bank it was quite far away and the haze was making it difficult. However, it was clearly a Scoter, even from a long way out. It was only when I got to see its wings clearly that the White really stood out. I tried to get a photo but once I took my eyes off the scope I lost it. Still, a smashing Spurn and Year-tick for me.
As the afternoon wore on, the weather continued to be incredibly warm, so I decided to head on down to Clubleys to see if any Red-veined Darters were out and showing. I was in luck. I had four male and one female showing very well along the edge of the scrapes. I finally got the shots and views of the species that I had wanted since I first came to spurn almost two years ago.
-Red-veined Darter
I finished the day with a short trip to Sammies, but there was nothing much going on up that way. A couple of Grey Partridge gave me a fright when the erupted from the grass in front of me, and a tatty cream-crowned Marsh Harrier flew over. In the evening the NGBs started to arrive, allowing me to see old friends and make new ones. Despite there not being the numbers of birds around, it was a fantastic days birding.

Sightings List:
Spurn: Canal and Warren: Woodpigeon, House Sparrow, Swallow, Shelduck, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Chiffchaff, Feral Pigeon, Starling, Wren, Blackbird, Carrion Crow, Pheasant, Curlew, Greylag Goose, Dunnock, Whimbrel, Reed Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Mallard, Magpie, Reed Bunting, House Martin, Black-tailed Godwit, Canada Goose, Gannet, Sandwich Tern, Common Scoter, Brent Goose, Whitethroat, Dunlin, Grey Plover, Ringed Plover, Common Gull, Garden Warbler, Little Tern, Arctic Tern, Red-throated Diver, Fulmar, Kittiwake, Grey Wagtail, Red-breasted Flycatcher, Willow Warbler, Spotted Flycatcher, Red-backed Shrike, Oystercatcher, Skylark, Meadow Pipit,
Spurn: Beacon Lane and Holderness Field: House Martin, House Sparrow, Blackbird, Greenfinch, Robin, Woodpigeon, Goldfinch, Meadow Pipit, Chaffinch, Great Tit, Dunnock, Magpie, Swallow, Moorhen, Sedge Warbler, Carrion Crow, Shelduck, Little Egret, Avocet, Skylark, Yellow Wagtail, Black-headed Gull, Reed Bunting, 
Spurn: Kilnsea Wetlands and Beacon Ponds: Tufted Duck, Ringed Plover, Little Egret, Avocet, Oystercatcher, Mallard, Mute Swan, Little Tern, Swallow, Cormorant, Black-tailed Godwit, Common Teal, Knot, Shelduck, Woodpigeon, Meadow Pipit, Herring Gull, Greylag Goose, Sandwich Tern, Skylark, Redshank, Pheasant, Bar-tailed Godwit, House Martin, Carrion Crow, Black-headed Gull, Dunlin, Reed Bunting, Velvet Scoter, Turnstone, Stock Dove, Four-spot Chaser, Orange Tip, Red Admiral
Spurn: Triangle: Blackbird, Woodpigeon, House Martin, Goldfinch, Swallow, Dunnock, Greenfinch, Whitethroat, Carrion Crow, House Sparrow, Meadow Pipit, Starling, Pied Wagtail, Reed Bunting, Sedge Warbler, Skylark, Moorhen, Linnet, Cuckoo, Peregrine, Grey Partridge, Marsh Harrier, Lapwing, Common Blue-tailed Damselfly, Common Blue Damselfly, Red-veined Darter, Black-tailed Skimmer, Orange Tip, Wall Brown, Common Blue

Thursday, 26 May 2016

NGB Spurn Weekend day 1

I had not decided when I was going to head over to Spurn for the NGB weekend, but as little seemed to be happening elsewhere I decided to make my move late Thursday morning to arrive on site around mid afternoon. News had broken during the day of a couple of Icterine Warblers on site, the second of which was at Sammies Point. With that in mind thats where I headed first.
Once at Sammies there was very little on offer so I headed off down the canal to the original Icterine Warbler that had been showing again. On the way down to the canal Paul collard me, telling me that Adam had just caught a Bluethroat at the warren. Without a radio I was oblivious and had missed it by the time I knew about it. This was a bit gutting but decided to make my way down that way on the off chance that it was still showing after its release. On the way down I picked up one of my tartiest year-ticks in the form of a Barn Owl gracefully hunting along the top of the Canal. I managed a few nice shots, of what was undoubtedly the best views I have ever had of this species. Also down the canal were a couple of very showy Cuckoos, which it would have been rude not to take a photo of.
-Barn Owl
I continued on my way, past the Icterine bushes. I had a quick look but the bird was not currently showing so opted to carry on down to the Warren. Once there I could see an assembled crowd where I was informed the bird (a female) had been showing after release in the lower branches of a tree. However, after a while waiting the bird did not show again, and it looked likely that it had gone. The crowd disbanded until there were only a few of us left. It was then that Adam came round from checking the nets to reveal he had re-caught the Bluethroat. To prevent the bird becoming unsettled he did not show it, as it had been flicky before, but did allow me me to have a brief view in the hand before he released it. Once it had been let go it entered a dark dell, where it sat for some time, but in especially gloomy conditions so I was unable to get a good photo. However, the shots I got of the bird in the hand were nice, showing the strong facial markings and even a hint of colour on the throat. A superb lifer and a great start to the weekend.
After a while of sitting in the dell the bird did drop in, never to be seen again. Once it left I headed back up to where the Icterine Warbler was being viewed from in Canal Hedge. To describe it as distant would be an understatement but the bird did show, allowing me to get a view of my first of this species for over a year. I also sang intermittently too, which was something of a novelty. Obviously the light and the distance meant my photos are not particularly good, but its a record shot at least...
-Icterine Warbler
So despite only having half a day I did manage to pick up a lifer, a couple of year-ticks and have a swell time doing it. What a great start to the weekend.

Sightings List:
Spurn: Sammies Point: Greenfinch, Pied Wagtail, Blackbird, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon, Collard Dove, Chaffinch, House Sparrow, Swallow, House Martin, Starling, Meadow Pipit, Reed Bunting, Greylag Goose, Oystercatcher, Mallard, Redshank, Whitethroat, Wren, Great Tit, Dunnock, Dunlin, Sedge Warbler, Linnet, Avocet,
Spurn: Canal and Warren: Swift, Barn Owl, Mallard, Woodpigeon, Swallow, Shelduck, Magpie, Meadow Pipit, Cuckoo, Mute Swan, House Martin, Skylark, Kestrel, Great Tit, Spotted Flycatcher, Chiffchaff, Blue Tit, Bluethroat, Herring Gull, Whitethroat, Sedge Warbler, Reed Warbler, Icterine Warbler, Brent Goose, Curlew, Whimbrel,

Monday, 23 May 2016

Paxton Pits NR

Having got back from Wembley late yesterday evening today, I had a late start today. The suited a trip down to Cambridgeshire for the Great Reed Warbler nicely, as it showed best in the evening. With nothing else to twitch on the cards I decided to make my move over that way, arriving on site at around 13.30.
I was very impressed with the reserve. Once on site I was surrounded by migrants singing, all properly going for it and blasting out their calls. Of course the real songsters were the Nightingales that this reserve is famous for, but I only saw one of about ten that I heard. That being said, I did not really stop and look hard for them, desperate to make my way to where the Great Reed Warbler was singing from.
I did stop though when I heard a Garden Warbler singing from behind me. This is one of the most difficult species for me to ever get on my yearlist for some reason. I heard the call but it took a moment to click that actually that probably wasn't a Blackcap but a Garden Warbler. Typically it was elusive but I did get nice views through the bins before it flew into a bramble patch. Thats a real yearlisting weight off my shoulders.
There were so many other birds around, including a handful of Hobby, Cuckoo, Common Tern and then my first Dragonflies and Damselflies of the year. The dragonflies looked like hairy dragonflies but they did not land so I could not say for certain. Overall, I was extremely impressed with the reserve, so much so a part of me wished I had set off earlier to I could have had more time to look around.
As it turns out I did have time to look around, but that I spent it at the reedbed where the Great Reed Warbler was supposed to be. Four and a half hours in fact was the time that I waited for the bird to show itself. All the while it spluttered elements of its call out from the base of the reeds. After about two and a half hours wait it did eventually start to sing properly, followed by almost continual singing. The main problem was that it was quite breezy and the moving reeds would have made the bird disinclined to sit up. Also the positioning of us, in a small window surrounded by trees made it very difficult to judge where the bird was actually singing from.
Time passed and my optimism for seeing the bird began to drop, knowing that it probably would not be coming out in the wind. Then, as I was browsing through the reeds, by some miracle, I got it, sat up among the reeds. It was not at the top but was in the open. I gave the other birders the directions for it, and then began to try and get some photos. It was quite distant but the view through the scope was fantastic. You were able to watch it sing, and observe the mouth movements for each individual call element. It was really something to watch.
I must say though that I was really quite underwhelmed by the birds size, I had imagined something more like a starling or thrush, but (Possibly because it was sat on its own, all other Reed Warblers had hunkered down) it just did not seem that big. But the call was fantastic and it was awesome to be able to watch it out in the open at last. However it only sat up for around 10 minuets before it dropped down again. Given how long I had already waited I did not fancy waiting any longer.
-Great Reed Warbler
After so long it was an incredible relief to have finally seen it. And it was worth the wait, only problem was the new digiscoping method I had trailed on it, which seemed to have worked in the field was badly overexposed when I returned home. Possibly due to it being early evening (18.50ish) so the light had all but failed for photography. Still, I managed to get a few record shots which I am pleased with, to some degree...

Species List:
Paxton Pits NR: Chaffinch, Robin, Mute Swan, Coot, Woodpigeon, Carrion Crow, Cormorant, Greylag Goose, Garden Warbler, Dunnock, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Wren, Hobby, Jackdaw, Cuckoo, Common Tern, Nightingale, Tufted Duck, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Reed Warbler, Reed Bunting, Common Buzzard, Chiffchaff, Grey Heron, Grey Wagtail, Swift, Swallow, House Martin, Kingfisher, Blackbird, Moorhen, Willow Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Yellowhammer, Herring Gull, 

Friday, 20 May 2016

Blacktoft Sands RSPB

With nothing else on the cards I decided to go and get the Monties at Blacktoft for my yearlist. That plan failed as the bird did not show in the two hours I waited. The staff member present said it had been seen up river and there had flown south, maybe she had given up waiting for the male. Either way, I diddnt see it...
Birds I did see more than made up for it though. The Bittern put on quite a show, more so that the photo would suggest. Through the scope I got great views, but was more content to watch it rather than photograph it. I at least have a record shot for the year now...
There were so many Bearded Tits. Obviously this is the site where they are well known, but in the past I have hardly seen any. Today they were flying everywhere. Whilst scanning the reedbed they would frequently fly across the view. A Cuckoo flew close past the hide, and a Peregrine flew over. But perhaps the best bird was a self found Hobby. Sadly it did not come close and I quickly lost it, although other birders were able to stay on it for much longer. Overall a very enjoyable days birding despite the obvious miss. 
Species List:
Blacktoft Sands RSPB: Bittern, Bearded Tit, Swift, Tufted Duck, Little Grebe, Great-crested Grebe, Greylag Goose, Shelduck, Woodpigeon, Little Egret, Black-headed Gull, Herring Gull, Sedge Warbler, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Marsh Harrier, Gadwall, Coot, Reed Bunting, Avocet, Mallard, Tree Sparrow, Cuckoo, Grey Heron, Pochard, Mute Swan, Peregrine, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Stock Dove, Jackdaw, Hobby, Cormorant, Sparrowhawk,

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Old Moor RSPB

With nothing worth twitching turned up around I decided to make my first trip to Old Moor of the year, in the hope of seeing a Bittern. As a result, as soon as I arrived I headed to the Bittern Hide. I had not waited long when the Bittern, which had obviously been somewhere behind the hide, flew round right in front of us, giving me one of my best ever views of this species. It had a stream of angry gulls following its tail until it dropped down in the reeds. I did not have the camera out so I was able to just watch it, but obviously it does mean no photos. I did see the Bittern again when I was in the Wader Scrape Hide, as it flew past more distantly and much higher up, but again no photos. Still, its been over a year since my last Bittern so I was pretty thrilled with that.
I had also got myself a new attachment for my scope to hopefully aid with my digiscoping. Today was its first time out. Its a bit fiddly but helps prevent shaking when trying to take photos and I'm looking forward to taking it with me on twitches. Its fortunate that there were plenty of birds to take photos of today...
-Mediterranean Gull
-Little Ringed Plover 
Overall it was mainly common species on the agenda today but I got a good list gathered and Bittern is my 190th species on the yearlist this year. Its keeping it ticking over very nicely.

Species List:
Old Moor RSPB: Black-headed Gull, Great Tit, Gadwall, Moorhen, Swift, Swallow, Mallard, Kestrel, Woodpigeon, Magpie, Canada Goose, Tufted Duck, Great-crested Grebe, Coot, Stock Dove, Jackdaw, Pochard, Bittern, Robin, House Martin, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Sand Martin, Common Tern, Carrion Crow, Common Buzzard, Redshank, Mute Swan, Pheasant, Lapwing, Linnet, Oystercatcher, Little Grebe, Ringed Plover, Dunlin, Blackbird, Mediterranean Gull, Avocet, Shoveler, Little Ringed Plover, Jay, Grey Heron, Bullfinch, Collard Dove, Tree Sparrow, Greenfinch, Chaffinch, 

Tuesday, 17 May 2016


Great-spotted Cuckoo is one of my most wanted to see birds of all time. With my ample time having finished uni I had planned to twitch one should one come up at any point during the spring. Such as it happened the peak time for one to drop in passed without report until one was found at Portland, about as far away as I could have imagined.
I could not go immediately, the distance meaning it would have to stay a little while to give it some credentials first, plus I had wrapping up the dissertation first. I handed in the dissertation two days early so to justify a possible trip down, but it took some work to convince myself that it would still be there.
I bought a ticket for a coach down at 1.00 in the morning, and then got the train from London Victoria to Weymouth. I did not expect the bird to have stayed overnight, but I was overjoyed to see a 'tweet' at 6.00 in the morning saying that the bird was still present. I finally made it on site at half 11 only to get the news that the bird had not been seen for over two hours. I had hope it would reappear but in two hours of unsuccessful searching the hope soon changed to despair. Signal was patchy and my phone battery was giving up so I decided to head to its favourite spot on the footpath at Reap Lane. Upon arrival I was informed that it was here, and had been showing for some time. Raises the question why news had not been put out. Anyway, it took a short while but the bird soon revealed itself and started to show very well.
It had a pattern of sitting out and feeding for about 10 mins, before flying into a dense thicket for between half and 3/4 of an hour. After a while in the thicket it would move to the back of the thicket where it could be seen, and then stay there until it decided to fly back out to the feeding area.
There were hundreds of Brown-tailed Moth caterpillars for it to feed on, and that is probably the reason it decided to stay, as the weather had turned overnight to looking quite chilly and overcast. The bird frequently sat looking like it would rather be anywhere else in the world than where it was, but when it sat up it was active and a real pleasure to watch. Sadly I labored to get any incredible shots like those that have littered twitter over its stay but I got a few nice record shots. 
-Great-spotted Cuckoo
Once located the Cuckoo stuck to that pattern for the four hours that I stayed to watch it. Well worth the journey down in the end. The only disappointment of the day was really the lack of supporting cast. Nice views of Peregrine on the deck and a few Ravens knocking about were about the best of the other birds on site. The chilly breeze probably tucked any migrants within the hedges and there was nothing moving on the sea, although in searching for the cuckoo I did not stay by the sea for very long.
When I finished watching the Cuckoo it was mid afternoon. Whilst waiting for my train I decided to have a quick look at Radipole Lake. I got fantastic views of Cettis Warbler in the car park, and I finally managed to connect with its famous Hooded Merganser, a bird which I have somehow missed on every over occasion I have been on the site.
-Hooded Merganser
The journey back took its tole, and by the time I got home at 5 in the morning I could not have gone on even if I had wanted to. But it was so worth it, the Cuckoo was something else, one of the best birds I have ever seen.

Species List:
Portland Bill: Peregrine, Herring Gull, Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Starling, House Sparrow, Raven, Goldfinch, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Blackbird, Shag, Carrion Crow, Great-spotted Cuckoo, Woodpigeon, Swift, Swallow, Fulmar, Pied Wagtail, Linnet, Jackdaw,
Radipole Lake RSPB: Swift, Swallow, Mute Swan, Mallard, Cormorant, Hooded Merganser, House Martin, Shelduck, Great-crested Grebe, Herring Gull, Feral Pigeon, Coot, Moorhen, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Greater Black-backed Gull, Grey Heron, House Sparrow, Tufted Duck, Cettis Warbler, Carrion Crow, Oystercatcher, Great Tit, Woodpigeon, Chiffchaff, Gadwall,