having just arrived , they were very flighty and keeping a good distance between ourselves , whilst all the time keeping an eye out for a passing meal . There were also good numbers of hirundine feeding along the face of the cliff and Blackcaps , Willow Warblers , Chiffchaffs and Common Whitethroat could be heard in the wooded area further away from the cliff . On my way back to the
car park , a male Linnet was much more approachable as he sang to attract a mate . From there , we made our way to Upton Heath , a Sand Lizard site the other side of Poole , that I had been told about by a volunteer at Arne . Unfortunately , by the time we got to the site after much confusion with Upton Country Park , the cloud had filled in again , with a marked drop in temperature . I had a look around , but it soon became obvious that it was a lost cause , especially with the arrival of many late afternoon dog walkers . I did however find a new , for me , species of Milkwort being Heath /
Polygala serpyllifolia . On the way back to the b&b , we made a stop at the site where I photographed the Sand Lizards the day before , and found the two enthusiasts who told me of the site , doing the same thing , passing and having a look . We had a look around but there was no sign of any reptiles out , so we went on our separate ways . The last full day dawned just grey and cool , so we decided to head down towards Weymouth , where we found low cloud and drizzle , so headed a bit further on to Portland and Chesil Beach . The viewpoint at the top of Portland kept drifting in
and out of the mist and during one clear patch I got my only shot , a Herring Gull at rest . WE headed back to Weymouth and stopped at an open air market , and whilst Carol had a look around that , I went to have a look around an incredible large reedbed alongside the car park , which just happened to be RSPB Radipole Lake . As soon as I got onto the path , Reed Warblers could be heard in large
numbers , with very few being seen . I just about managed a shot of this one , the only one that gave an opportunity . There were also good numbers of Cetti's Warbler , but apart from an occasional glimpse , it was the usual 'heard , rarely seen' . A calling Reed Bunting was seen further down the
path and shortly afterwards , a female collecting nesting materials . Towards the far end of the reedbed , Little and Great Crested Grebe were found , the latter still displaying . The expected Coots , Moorhens , Mallard and Tufted Ducks all put in an appearance , as did a Great Black-backed Gull ,
posing with three Herring Gulls . A lot of noise coming from around a corner , was found to be
coming from two gorky juvenile Carrion Crows , shouting for food from the nearby adults . The low clouds seemed to have kept large numbers of newly arrived hirundines in the area , and they were busily feeding on insects very close to the surface of the water . I spent some time trying to get shots , but the light was very poor , but I managed to get three of the species on camera .
and although a bit distant , was pleased to see a male Bearded Tit emerge and perch on the outside of the reeds . I managed a few shots before he darted back into cover . I could see the other bird still moving within the reeds , and was more than overjoyed when it too came to the front of the reeds , to
reveal itself as a female . She too didn't stay long , and after a few seconds the pair flew across the opening in the reeds and disappeared deep into the other side . If anyone is visiting Weymouth , this reserve , almost in the middle of the town , is well worth a visit . Collecting Carol , we headed up to Lodmoor , another wetland reserve . The reserve has no dedicated car park and an adjacent 'pay and display' did not look the type of one to leave Carol in the car , so driving around , I managed to find a 'back door' to the reserve , in a road with houses alongside . I set off for a look around and was soon in a large reedbed , once again containing lots of hirundines and Warblers , with the addition this time of a Cuckoo in a wood overlooking the reeds . It gave me an opportunity to get a poor shot of the
fourth member of the hirundines , the fast flying Swift , not really a shot for poor light conditions . I had a good look around , but couldn't find the Ibis , but on a very well groomed - by rabbits , area of
grass , I did come across a Whimbrel feeding on insects . It carried on feeding , taking no notice of me , but when a local dog walker appeared , the bird took flight , but it did return when the dog and
walker moved on . By the time I got back to Carol , it was starting to drizzle , so time to head back to the b&b , but as I was putting my gear in the back of the car , Carol spotted a raptor and by the time I
got the camera out again it had been joined by a Carrion Crow . By now the light was grim , and I can't get any markings on the underwing . Probably another Common Buzzard , or maybe ?