Monday, 10 October 2011

Holy Diver - Ronnie James Dio

A note for any readers visiting this site via the links on the
Portland Bird Observatory website.
As 'birders' you may find interest in the posts of Tuesday 4th October and 14th July 2011 ref
'dark phase' Long-tailed Skua!

Another great start to the day, as not only did a Grey Wagtail fly overhead at the exact same spot as yesterday but a Firecrest was also letting out its gentle call from the bushes at the north end of the Rodwell Trail.

This, the smallest of all Great Britain's breeding birds, surely has to be in the Top 5 of every bird watcher in the land. Photo from the archive.

A close relative is the same size, Goldcrest which was also represented by about half a dozen along the full length if the trail. Another reasonable day weather wise still on the mild side, with short bursts of sunshine breaking through an otherwise overcast sky while the fresh breeze still lingers in the westerly quarter.

As stated before the Rodwell Trail follows the course of the now (unfortunately) redundant Weymouth to Portland railway line along which rail workers must have grown a variety of fruit trees plus other plants. This example, loaded with fine fruits, is inaccessible so should provide a good supply of food for Redwing and Fieldfare when they arrive from their northerly breeding grounds.

In addition there were a couple of Bullfinches, always a treat to clap eyes on, small parties if Long-tailed Tit, while on the wing and seemingly migrating south were Swallows, Meadow Pipits, Pied Wagtails and

good numbers of Siskin unfortunately too high to see let alone photograph.

At Ferry Bridge, for the third day running, I was greeted by a small skein of Brent Geese, this time 7 and a little further on

19 Mediterranean Gulls in a feeding frenzy, catching I know not but there was a good deal of squabbling going on over whatever it was.

Portland was once again very quiet, but this Kestrel did pose for a couple of shots, while down at

the Bill both Turnstone and

Rock Pipit were also content to linger.

The report of Condor around here only ever refers to the Cross Channel Ferries which ply the route from Weymouth to the Channel Islands on a daily basis.

On the way home I once again called in to see my mate The Secret Lemonade Drinker, who allowed me to liberate this Hummingbird Hawk-moth from his garage. Unfortunately, before I had time to photograph this extraordinary 'flier' it succumbed to a severe case of death - Amen!

Before leaving, Gary showed me this fine 'resin cast' of this Hard Hat Diver meticulously correct in every detail.

Of mutual interest to us both, as at one time or another we have both been professional divers ourselves, although neither of us ever used this equipment known as Standard Diving.

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