Poole Harbour sightings blog

A record of all interesting and notable sightings from around the harbour throughout the year.

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Archive for July, 2014

Harbour Update – posted 15/08/14

Posted on: July 15th, 2014 by Birds of Poole Harbour

Few reports today but 5 Common Sandpiper under the Holes Bay railway bridge was notable. Also in Holes Bay 14 Black-tailed Godwit, 11 Redshank and 8 Curlew.  A handful of Yellow Wagtail at Lytchett Bay are a sign of things to come over the next month or so.

Harbour Update – posted13/07/14

Posted on: July 13th, 2014 by Birds of Poole Harbour

Despite the forecast the rain managed to avoid us (well, it missed me anyway) and it turned out to be stunning weekend in the end. Another ringing session in the north of the harbour saw the first returning Sedge Warblers ringed with 3 in total, also a juvenile Kingfisher, plenty of Reed Warbler, a Cetti’s Warbler and several Reed Bunting. The Brownsea Lagoon is starting to get busy as there were 305 Oystercatcher, 47 Redshank, 9 Greenshank, 2 Common Sandpiper (plus an early morning count of 16!), 13 Little Egret and 15 Mediterranean Gull. Up on Hartland/Soldiers Road Woodlark were scattered in small feeding flocks with a total of 9 seen by Steve Smith along Soldiers Road and another 3 up on Hartland. Lytchett Bay is seeing good numbers of waders with 7 Greenshank, 4 Common Sandpiper, 2 Whimbrel, 1 Spotted Redshank, 1 Dunlin, 4 Snipe, 4 Green Sandpiper, 2 Little Ringed Plover and 24 Lapwing.  

Harbour Update – posted 10/07/14

Posted on: July 10th, 2014 by Birds of Poole Harbour

I received an excited text yesterday morning from one of the regulars on our ‘BoPH’ guided walks Barbara Bissett, explaining she was currently on the weekly Arne Wednesday walk and their group was watching an Osprey out in the Wareham Channel as another possible was drifting high overhead. This timing is pretty much spot on as we tend to start seeing the first autumn birds from mid July onwards. Its hard to say where these birds are coming from as they could either be failed breeders from further north already heading south, early fledged young looking for a decent place to feed for the next few weeks, or possibly a bird that’s not even attempted to breed and has just been touring the country all summer. We should hopefully see Osprey numbers steadily rise over the next six weeks with the Wareham and Middlebere Channel being the best places to look. I was also informed that on the same-guided walk, a Red Kite drifted low over Middlebere and good numbers of Dartford Warbler are still about with 6 Woodlark also seen feeding on a footpath. If you’ve never been on one of the FREE Arne Wednesday walks I can highly recommend them, they start at 10am every week rain or shine! Talking of texts, as I type I’ve just received news that the first glimpse of a Marsh Harrier chick has been noted off Swineham. Local Harrier water Peter Hadrill has been carefully monitoring both nests all summer and has been patiently waiting for fledging to take place. Now the first has been seen, activity should really increase over the coming weeks with hopefully the second nest showing signs of fledging soon too. There were 5 Spoonbill in the Middlebere Channel along with 100 Black-tailed Godwit and 50 Curlew. At Lytchett Bay there are still 3 Little Ringed Plover present, also 1 Spotted Redshank, 5 Green Sandpiper and two very funky looking Water Rail chicks. Autumn ringing has now got underway in the harbour with several sites up and running and it obvious already that local birds have had a good breeding year with good numbers of young birds about. You can read about this morning’s session HERE.


Harbour Update – posted 08/07/14

Posted on: July 8th, 2014 by Birds of Poole Harbour

It won’t be long now until we start seeing the first returning Willow Warblers, Garden Warblers, Pied Flycatchers and Whitethroats of the autumn with birds beginning to head south from late July and early august onwards. There are already signs of passage with a mixed tit flock at Upton country park this morning containing around 10 Long-tailed Tit, 7+ Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcap as-well as numerous Great and Blue Tit. Waders continue to arrive with 5 Little Ringed Plover, 2 Dunlin, 8 Green Sandpiper and 100+ Black-tailed Godwit at Lytchett Bay. Nightjars were observed at Holton Lee where Tree Pipit have managed to fledge young.  On Brownsea the majority of Sandwich Terns have now fledged with just a handful left feeding young, also some Common Terns are still sitting.  

Harbour Update – posted 06/07/14

Posted on: July 6th, 2014 by Birds of Poole Harbour

A Hoopoe was discovered along Sandford Lane industrial estate in Wareham yesterday which is quite unusual for the time of year as you tend to expect to find them either in spring or less so in autumn. At Lytchett Bay there was 11 Green Sandpiper, 1 Little Ringed Plover, 2 Greenshank and 2 Spotted Redshank. On Brownsea a Spoonbill was feeding, also there 2 Spotted Redshank, 1 Greenshank and 12 Black-tailed Godwit.

Harbour Update – posted 04/07/14

Posted on: July 4th, 2014 by Birds of Poole Harbour

The Bar-headed Goose remains at Poole Park and despite its origin has attracted a small inquisitive number of people wanting to see one in Dorset! On the Brownsea Lagoon 3 Spotted Redshank, 2 Greenshank, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 135 Black-tailed Godwit and 1 Brent Goose were present. At Lytchett Bay there were 3 Little Ringed Plover, 2 Spotted Redshank, 5 Greenshank, 17 Lapwing, 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Snipe and 16 Teal. It seems both Dartford Warbler and Woodlark have had good breeding seasons with double figure counts of the former and high single figure counts of the latter on many of the Poole Harbour heathlands. Hobby have been confirmed nesting at an undisclosed site and Spoonbills have been moving between Brownsea and Middlebere. 

Harbour Update – posted02/07/14

Posted on: July 2nd, 2014 by Birds of Poole Harbour

This morning started off with a strange sighting reported to me of a Bar-headed Goose that appeared in Poole Park. These stunning birds are a central Asian species often found at high altitude. However right across Europe, including the UK there are numerous feral populations that have developed from birds escaping/ being released from private collections, none the less still rare in Dorset, wild or not! At Lytchett Bay there were 2 Little Ringed Plover, 2 Spotted Redshank, 33 Black-tailed Godwit, 11 Lapwing, 16 Teal, 3 Gadwall and 4 Green Sandpiper. Its now been discovered that 2 of the 7 Spoonbill present are newly arrived adult birds, showing that even Spoonbill are now on the move for the autumn. A Turtle Dove was reported over Holes Bay. 


Harbour Update – posted 01/07/14

Posted on: July 1st, 2014 by Birds of Poole Harbour

Wader species continue to arrive in the harbour on their way south. An RSPB survey at Lytchett Bay produced the following – 1 Little Ringed Plover, 12 Green Sandpiper, 120+ Black-tailed Godwit, 19 Lapwing, 8 Redshank, 2 Greenshank, 1 Spotted Redshank, 1 Snipe and 21 Curlew, along with 1 Shoveler and plenty of juvenile Black-headed Gulls. In Holes Bay north-east there were 26 Black-tailed Godwit, 11 Curlew, 37 Canada Geese, 1 Common Tern, 2 Redshank and 8 Shelduck. On Brownsea 2 Avocet, 16 Redshank and 100+ Canada Geese.

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