2nd – 3rd May – Durlston and Portland   Leave a comment

With a northerly breeze and cloud moving in overnight it looked perfect for a ringing session at Durlston, so I made the effort to get up at 0430. Four of us met an hour later but the wind was quite strong and coast was covered with fog and we were only rewarded with 12 new birds and 5 retraps. Whitethroat was the most numerous bird and we trapped another two that we ringed last year. On a walk around the site I flushed a Ring Ousel, quite a late date for this early migrant.

Although not all can be sexed and many cannot be aged, a Common Whitethroat with as grey a head as this must be a male.

Lesser Whitethroats migrate from east Africa via the Levant and then north-west across Turkey and Europe rather than cross the Sahara.

Late on the 2nd I heard about a Kentish Plover at Ferrybridge adjacent to Portland Harbour. As it is now a scarce visitor to the UK, but up to 1931 the species bred in Kent and Sussex but egg and specimen collectors caused a massive decline and tourist development finished them off.

I have seen 7 KPs in the UK, 5 of them in Dorset but this is my first since 1992.

A record digiscoped shot of a Turtle Dove. Since I started birding this species has declined by 94% in the UK.

Migrant Wheatears numbered at least 50 ……

… whilst the resident Little Owl was in its usual crevice.

Posted May 3, 2012 by gryllosblog in Uncategorized

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