This blog is about my birding exploits, which mainly take place in the Weymouth/Portland area, in Dorset. Will also include stuff from elsewhere, plus some other critters too. Hope you enjoy. All photographs are © Brett Spencer, unless indicated otherwise. The above image is of a Siberian Rubythroat, taken in Holland in 2016.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

So, I've Decided To Blog Again

Sure, this is gonna please some people and also, it may exasperate others. Thing is, you can't please everyone all of the time. I hope to make this blog more informative in some way, don't really know how quite yet, so, a work in progress kind of thing.

Anyway, I'd better catch up on a few things.

2nd August

Red-necked Grebe in Portland Harbour.

9th August

Female Map butterfly in Dorset. The fat abdomen sexes this individual. Strange story behind these, with someone claiming to have released them. If true, this is very sad, as when they do colonise naturally, we will always question their authenticity. A real shame.

Adult female Scaup at Abbotsbury Swannery.

Male Beautiful Demoiselle at Abbotsbury Swannery. A stunning insect. One of my favourites.

11th August

1st-calender year Yellow-legged Gull at Radipole Lake. Note the pattern of the greater coverts and the extent of new 1st-winter feathers in the scapulars. Herring and Lesser Black-backs should still be, basically, in juvenile plumage at this time.

Same individual as above. Note the wing and tail pattern. The inner primary pattern is like a halfway house between Herring and Lesser Black-backed Gulls.

Juvenile Common Gull at Radipole Lake. We don't get to see them in this plumage down here that often.

24th August

More on the gull theme at Radipole Lake and interesting to compare with the Yellow-legged Gull above.

Herring Gull that is just starting it's moult into 1st-winter plumage. Note the inner primary and tail pattern and pale notching in the median coverts. The latter like miniature versions of the rear scapulars.

Juvenile Lesser Black-backed Gull. Note the petite structure and long rear ended look. Note the less notch appearance of the median/lesser coverts, compared with Herring Gull. 

The above two photos show the variation in 1st-year Lesser Black-backed Gull tail patterns.

30th August

Balearic Shearwaters off Portland Bill. Part of a good movement off the Bill that day. Also saw a single Sooty Shearwater.

31st August

Juvenile Spotted Redshank on Lodmoor. A surprisingly scarce bird in the Weymouth/Portland area.

A gorgeous Clouded Yellow on Lodmoor.

Redstart on Lodmoor.

6th September

Nightingale in the Obs quarry at Portland Bill.

Osprey over Portland. One of three I saw that day.

White Wagtail at Portland Bill. Note the grey rump and overall clean look of this bird.

Kingfisher at Radipole Lake.

7th September

Juvenile Red-backed Shrike at Radipole Lake.

A ridiculously confiding 1st-year Yellow-legged Gull at Radipole Lake. Photo taken with camera phone. 

13th September

Juvenile Little Stint at Radipole Lake.

Spotted Redshank moulting from juvenile to 1st-winter plumage. How startling is that gleaming white underwing?

20th September

Atrocious record shot of the juv/1st-winter Masked Shrike at Spurn. Seen much better through a telescope, of course. A lifer for me and obviously, a very educational bird. Also saw a Red-breasted Flycatcher up the road from this bird.

21st September

A very confiding Wryneck at Portland Bill.

Yellow-browed Warbler at Portland Bill. Check out the streaking on the breast of this bird, not something I've noticed before.

Tree Pipit at Portland Bill.

27th September

A very skulky Barred Warbler at Portland Bill.

28th September

Wryneck in the hand at Portland Bird Observatory. I never get bored with seeing these beauties.

29th September

1st-year Siberian Lesser Whitethroat at Portland Bill. More on this bird in the previous post.

2nd October

Female Bearded Reedling at Littlesea, The Fleet. One of two at this site and a Littlesea tick for me.

A gorgeous male Bearded Reedling in the hand at Radipole Lake.

3rd October

Avocet at Radipole Lake. A good bird for this site. Saw a Bittern whilst watching this bird.

4th October

1st-winter Turtle Dove on Portland. Travel safely my friend.

And finally, the juvenile Rose-coloured Starling on Portland.

Note the slightly darker wings and tail and paler rump.

With friends.

Note the distinctive gait, with it's wings slightly drooped and tail slightly cocked.

Oh, mustn't forget the Western Bonelli's Warbler at Portland Bill on 16th August that was a lifer for me, but unfortunately, didn't manage to photograph it. 

Hope I haven't bored you too much, but there was a lot to catch up on.


Bomber said...


Steve Smith said...

Welcome back. Nice photos. Looking forward to educational posts, good photos and pics of the Phoenix rising from the ashes
Steve S

Steve Groves said...