Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Puffin & Blowin'

Early morning looked set fair for another nice day, with just a little more cloud and the wind speed increased by a dozen knots or so. Swifts still prevailed at Radipole, as did the vocal Blackcap but in addition there were also a singing Lesser Whitethroat and Bullfinch. As it was low water, spring tide it was thought the investment of a bus fare (the 'free' service doesn't start until 09-00) to get me to Ferry Bridge to look for Waders. It didn't take long to establish there were few, namely a couple of distant Dunlin, but it was good to confirm that the unseasonable pair of Red-breasted Merganser were still there along with a number of Little Tern, while the human vigil continued to guard their nest site.

Onward to Portland, where Barleycrates Lane produced nothing, it was a full hour before there was something notable. At the Admiralty compound, I met a fellow birder from Central London looking for Puffin, and much more by luck than judgment I was able to point to one sat on the sea at the bottom of the cliff. Leaving him to it I continued to the fence, where there were c2 more, but the count could also have included the original bird.

Puffins, at some distance hence the poor picture but nonetheless the first I have ever managed in Dorset.

At the Bird Observatory someone arrived with this young, exhausted House Sparrow which the Warden will doubtless nurse back to recovery.

In one of the Moth Traps was this little beauty a Small Elephant Hawk-moth, a great favourite of mine regardless of its common status.

The ancient profession of 'farrier' still finds much work on Portland. Here the Exmoor Pony man 'shoes' one of the large Island population.

and more from South America.

Rufous Antpitta

Rusty-breasted Antpitta

Tody Motmot