Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Portland Bill....Dorset Part I !

Last weekend 13th & 14th July was my ex neighbours 60th birthday surprise gathering & the party was in Dorset. I could not stay with them as the game would be given away so I opted for the Portland Bird Observatory option! Life can be tough!

The traffic Saturday morning was typical for a steamy hot summer day but I arrived safely after a 4hr journey. I have not stayed at the Observatory before but I must say the facilities were perfect and good value for money.
(White Horse)
My first port of call was to stop at The White Horse Osmington Hill which was created in the Limestone in 1808 and depicts King George III riding his horse. A buzzard also made an appearance during my brief stay at this icon on the landscape.  

(Portland Bird Observatory)
Next stop was at the Portland Bird Observatory having seen the number of people & lack of birds at The Ferrybridge Inn at Chesil Beach. I dropped my bag off at the observatory & took a walk to the lighthouse & cast my eye over the Bill & the calm sea. I am not a great sea watcher but a bit of practice wouldn’t do any harm. Gannets, Razorbill & Guillemot were the order of the afternoon.
A Whimbrel flew past the Bill early evening turning inland past the lighthouse.
(Portland Lighthouse)
The evening was spent in the pub practicing Spanish of all things! By 9.30pm I was finished & turned in with an early start in the morning in mind.

Sunday morning soon appeared & so did I but not as early as I had planned!! But the Bill was about a 5min walk away so all was not lost! The weather was calm and surprisingly warm for 6am!
(Northern Gannet)
I settled on the boulders by the Bill setting up my telescope for the distant birds. The sea was almost like a Mill pond visibility would not be an issue here! But would there be birds?! Razorbill were more numerous than Guillemot & Gannet were surprisingly few in numbers compared to the previous day anyway.
Single Shag passed close to the rocks total count 4 birds. I don’t get to see them that often so they are always worth a mention.
(Common Scoter)
Two groups of Common Scoter were also seen flying out to sea. The total count reached 18 birds. Once movements had died down I returned to the observatory & settled up...

Next stop Ferrybridge,  Radipole RSPB & Lodmoore RSPB.....to be continued

No comments:

Post a Comment