Monday, 21 February 2011

Not A Lot Doing Today

On yet another dank and dreary day the prospect of rain seemed high so an early start was thought best, but passing through an equally dreary cemetery the drizzle was already starting. At Radipole things were little better and even these single

Great Crested Grebe and

Black-tailed Godwit looked bedraggled.

Through the gloom that was Weymouth Bay this morning, the former Royal Navy Mine Countermeasures vessel HMS Dulverton could be seen approaching Portland Harbour. Having recently undergone a refurbishment and refit she is now ready for transfer to the Lithuanian Navy under the name of M54 Kurvis.

Further on at Greenhill

c20 Turnstones were seen in the beach

but there was little, or no chance of seeing anything further afield as that is when the rain started in earnest.

On the first pass I had to ignore these Sweet Violets for fear of getting the camera wet, but at the Lodmoor shelter at least the

Long-billed Dowitcher, recently returned from Poole Park, was showing albeit head under wing. With a lull in the precipitation, it was time to head for Ferrybridge where the only change from Saturday was the arrival of

130+ Dunlin

which were perpetually flighty, and the absence of any Black Brant or Pale-bellied Brent Geese.

The only contenders in the Goose department were about 100 Dark-bellied Brent which were either nervy and mobile or distant. There were also the same combination of Gulls including Great Black-backed, Herring, Common, Mediterranean plus

these 2 Black-headed Gulls which were posing so well

it would have been a shame not to 'click' away!

Just an hour after the tide turned there were a few common birds to see, but on the way home

this male Red-breasted Merganser seemed content perched on the sea wall.

That was before it saw me showing interest, after which it quickly took to the sea

and then to flight, and was then gone.

Leaving the bus for the short walk home, I lingered to view the progress of the new road system which now seems to be close to being finished????

This shot shows the Boot Hill roundabout as it was on 6th June last year, since when

a lot of work has been undertaken to get it looking like this. If it all works then Weymouth will have benefited from some of the Olympic cash 'swilling around' at the moment.

finally today I can end on a real 'high' by copying this note from the Portland Bird Observatory web-site:-

We understand that planning application for helicopter pleasure flights over the Bill area has now been withdrawn by the applicant. Many thanks to the considerable number of Obs members and others who've taken the trouble to object to this proposal in recent days.

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