On the 29th September:
A day trip to Weymouth starting at Ferrybridge where we saw 5 Ringed Plovers, 2 Dunlin and a Little Gull. Then we went to Radipole Lake where along Buddleia Walk we saw a warbler that we didn't at first recognise, then it sang, a Cetti's Warbler, a new bird for us and a 1st record for Radipole and only the 2nd one seen in Dorset. We also saw the usual birds for the lake and 4 Little Gulls.
From there we drove to Portland, doing a sea-watch from the bill, seeing a Grey Phalarope, a Red-throated Diver, an Arctic Skua and a Great Skua, all new birds for us. Also seen were 37 Kittiwakes, 9 Razorbills, 2 Common Scoter, 7 Gannets, Sandwich and comic terns. Returning to Radipole Lake there were now 8 Little Gulls.
A helicopter flight from Penzance to St. Mary's, then a boat to Tresco, on the way seeing a Roseate Tern, a new bird for us.
On Tresco we made our way to the east end of the Great Pool, to an area of conifers, willows and beech, where we saw an immature Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, a first British record. The bird had already established a distinct route around the trees and started drilling holes.
A little distance away we saw our third new bird of the day, an immature male Scarlet Tanager, a second British record, it was very active, darting from bushes behind the trees out onto open branches, but most of the time it was high in the trees.
Also on Tresco we saw 4 Snow Buntings.
Above: drawing of Scarlet Tanager by Laurel Tucker.
Left: Bob Richardson on St. Mary's.
An overnight drive to Cornwall, in the morning we saw 2 Ravens in Marazion Car Park, then drove to Penzance to board the Scillonian for our stay on the Isles of Scilly.
During the crossing to St. Mary's we saw 26 Kittiwakes, 55 Gannets, a Sooty Shearwater, a Manx Shearwater, 2 Common Scoter, a Fulmar, 6 Guillemots, 3 Razorbills and a Great Skua.
Then we took the boat across to St. Agnes where we were staying for two weeks.
Later, at low tide, we had a walk across to Gugh seeing an immature American Golden Plover, a new bird for us. Also seen were 10 Sanderling, 2 Dunlin, 6 Ringed Plovers, a Grey Plover, 2 Bar-tailed Godwits, 2 Sandwich Terns, 2 Wheatears and a Peregrine.
American Golden Plover.
A visit to Chew Valley Lake where there were a few waders including a Wood Sandpiper, also a Black and 13 Common Terns. At Cheddar Reservoir there was also a Wood Sandpiper, 2 Black Terns and a Little Gull.
A visit to Chew Valley Lake where there were lots of duck, including 17 Ruddy Ducks, also a Bar-tailed Godwit, a Green Sandpiper and 9 Little Stints.
Watched a female Peregrine chasing a Cockatiel over the garden in Portishead, the Cockatiel calling loudly, it circled and returned over the garden, then the Peregrine took the bird in level flight.
A visit to Chew Valley Lake seeing an Osprey, 18 Great White Egrets, 23 Little Egrets, a Bar-tailed Godwit and a Marsh Harrier.