Mundane except for Mallard

Monday, 18th March 2013

Well, we managed to bump this morning's Weares' list up to twenty seven. The overall total for last year was ninety-two. The highest day count for 2012 (two observers) was forty-two species on October 11th. Then forty-one on three occasions: July 15th and September 16th and 17th. NB our coverage in the spring was minimal.

We got off to a good start with Great-spotted Woodpecker near the old Mermaid pub. Still nobody has heard any drumming on Portland. After the amazing upsurge of records since last autumn we all remain hopeful.

Continuing on the breeding theme, the pair of Mallard were again present at the 'Bomb Tidal Pool' by Grove Point. We are very excited about this as these are new arrivals this year. Hopefully they too may nest. A little fresh water and plenty of vegetation remains in the old swimming pools nearby. That's Jon's special spot; he has fond memories of tadpoleing there as a child. Let's hope any duck eggs escape the attention of the many foxes there. It would be great to get some ducklings to photograph - and quite a scoop, for Portland!

Tidal pools - left and right, empty at low tide, and Little Beach, far right - Google Earth

Just running my eye up and down my BirdTrack log list for today's Weares' visit reveals nothing else of special note. Greenfinches, Goldfinches and Chaffinches were present and singing in good numbers which added considerably to the enjoyment of the walk. We didn't see Bullfinches or Long-tailed Tits. Both species have the habit of rather 'going to ground' at this time of year as breeding gets underway.

Thinking about it... today's list is worthwhile putting on here as it shows almost exactly the resident species one can 'expect' to see on the Weares. Maybe add Raven and cross off Mallard and the Woodpecker that is. Though don't forget that this being Portland, almost anything is possible!

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