Poole Harbour sightings blog

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

Latest Sightings

Archive for September, 2019

Harbour Update – posted 30/09/19

Posted on: September 30th, 2019 by Birds of Poole Harbour

Today started fine and ended not so fine…torrid in fact. Still, there’s still a good suit of birds across the harbour. Ospreys are clinging on perhaps into October with 1 at Lytchett Fields, 1 at Middlebere and 1 in Holes Bay NE. The Brownsea Lagoon looked prime for a rarity but sadly it wasn’t to be but there was still a great range of species with 2 Curlew Sandpiper, 916 Oystercatcher, 1 Spotted Redshank, 9 Greenshank, 4 Grey Plover, 4 Ringed Plover, 113 Avocet, 336 Black-tailed Godwit, 7 Bar-tailed Godwit, 121 Redshank, 4 Knot, 1 Kingfisher and 1 Peregrine. From dawn there was another big push of Swallow, House Martin and Chiffchaff with a good number of Blackcap on the move too. At Middlebere/Hartland there were 12 Wheatear. In the Wareham Channel 3 Marsh Harrier were active flushing the masses of gulls that were out feeding on the flooded fields and 36 Spoonbill were feeding there too and a Cattle Egret was on the Swineham floods again. Marsh Harrier were also at Middlebere and Lytchett Fields. Kingfishers are putting on a good show at Sunnyside and Holton Pools currently and tomorrows forecast looks as if it could bring the first Redwing of the autumn with northerly winds late tomorrow night.

Curlew – Middlebere – Simon Kidner


Harbour Update – posted 30/09/19

Posted on: September 30th, 2019 by Birds of Poole Harbour

oday started fine and ended not so fine….torrid in fact. Still, there’s still a good suit of birds across the harbour. Ospreys are clinging on perhaps into October with 1 at Lytchett Fields, 1 at Middlebere and 1 in Holes Bay NE. The Brownsea Lagoon looked prime for a rarity but sadly it wasn’t to be but there was still a great range of species with 2 Curlew Sandpiper, 916 Oystercatcher, 1 Spotted Redshank, 9 Greenshank, 4 Grey Plover, 4 Ringed Plover, 113 Avocet, 336 Black-tailed Godwit, 7 Bar-tailed Godwit, 121 Redshank, 4 Knot, 1 Kingfisher and 1 Peregrine. From dawn there was another big push of Swallow, House Martin and Chiffchaff with a good number of Blackcap on the move too. At Middlebere/Hartland there were 12 Wheatear.In the Wareham Channel 3 Marsh Harrier were active flushing the masses of gulls that were out feeding on the flooded fields and 36 Spoonbill were feeding there too and a Cattle Egret was on the Swineham floods again. Marsh Harrier were also at Middlebere and Lytchett Fields. Kingfishers are putting on a good show at Sunnyside and Holton Pools currently and tomorrows forecast looks as if it could bring the first Redwing of the autumn with northerly winds late tomorrow night.

Curlew – Middlebere – Simon Kidner


Harbour Update – posted 29/09/19

Posted on: September 29th, 2019 by Birds of Poole Harbour

The recent heavy rain led to very high water levels observed across the Harbour. The ephemeral water bodies can draw in large numbers of wildfowl and waders, making for great birding spectacles. Sunnyside attracted 42 Mallard and 9 Gadwall, 1 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Sedge Warbler and a Kestrel. Swineham and Bestwall also experienced flooding and new Swineham scrapes along the Two-Rivers walk look fantastic with a pair of Wheatear, 6 Cetti’s Warbler, 17 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Peregrine, 1 Hobby and a passage of SwallowSand Martin and House Martin all observed. The gravel pit featured 130 Coot, 20 Gadwall, 70 Cormorant. Numerous Black-headed & Lesser Black-backed Gulls, c50 Black-tailed Godwit, 8 Curlew and c40 Lapwingfrequented Lower Piddle flood fields.

At least one Cattle Egret was present in the flooded fields between River Frome and Bog Lane along with abundant hirundine movement, 15 Lapwing and 12 Mute Swan. 2 Marsh Harrier were spotted at Holton Pools this afternoon. Lytchett Fields harboured great species diversity racking up totals of 2 Osprey, c150 Black-tailed Godwit, c120 Redshank, 26 Dunlin, 6+ Greenshank, 4 Green Sandpiper, 2 Spotted Redshank, 1 Curlew Sandpiper and a single Ruff.


Harbour Update – posted 29/09/19

Posted on: September 29th, 2019 by Birds of Poole Harbour

The recent heavy rain led to very high water levels observed across the Harbour. The ephemeral water bodies can draw in large numbers of wildfowl and waders, making for great birding spectacles. Sunnyside attracted 42 Mallard and 9 Gadwall, 1 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Sedge Warbler and a Kestrel. Swineham and Bestwall also experienced flooding and new Swineham scrapes along the Two-Rivers walk look fantastic with a pair of Wheatear, 6 Cetti’s Warbler, 17 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Peregrine, 1 Hobby and a passage of Swallow, Sand Martin and House Martin all observed. The gravel pit featured 130 Coot, 20 Gadwall, 70 Cormorant. Numerous Black-headed & Lesser Black-backed Gulls, c50 Black-tailed Godwit, 8 Curlew and c40 Lapwing frequented Lower Piddle flood fields.

At least one Cattle Egret was present in the flooded fields between River Frome and Bog Lane along with abundant hirundine movement, 15 Lapwing and 12 Mute Swan. 2 Marsh Harrier were spotted at Holton Pools this afternoon. Lytchett Fields harboured great species diversity racking up totals of 2 Osprey, c150 Black-tailed Godwit, c120 Redshank, 26 Dunlin, 6+ Greenshank, 4 Green Sandpiper, 2 Spotted Redshank, 1 Curlew Sandpiper and a single Ruff.


Harbour Update – posted 28/09/19

Posted on: September 28th, 2019 by Birds of Poole Harbour

Middlebere Channel was bustling with activity today, clocking up totals of c300 Avocet, c50 Black-tailed Godwit, 58 Shelduck, 6 Curlew, 2 Common Tern, 1 Whimbrel, Kingfisher, 2 Buzzard and a Peregrine. A Hobby was seen over Hartland Moor and an unringed adult Osprey was also spotted fishing over the channel before heading towards the Wareham Channel. A second unringed Osprey (juvenile) was observed around in Brands Bay and showed to within 40m of the hide.

Large mobile flock of Avocet and Black-tailed Godwit flying up from the salt marsh at Middlebere today. Disturbed by a raptor- Marsh Harrier, Buzzard, Sparrowhawk and Hobby were hunting along the channel. A large Swallow and House Martin passage was recorded through Sunnyside this morning.

Lytchett Fields featured 12 Dunlin, 9 Greenshank, 2 Spotted Redshank, 1 Green Sandpiper, numerous Redshank and several Black-tailed Godwit. A Common Crane was also seen over the Fields, along with 2 Osprey and singles of Peregrine and Marsh Harrier. An unusual visitor to Brownsea Lagoon was captured on our webcam – 4 Peacock spent the morning roaming around.

Peacock – Brownsea Island


Harbour Update – posted 28/09/19

Posted on: September 28th, 2019 by Birds of Poole Harbour

Middlebere Channel was bustling with activity today, clocking up totals of c300 Avocet, c50 Black-tailed Godwit, 58 Shelduck, 6 Curlew, 2 Common Tern, 1 WhimbrelKingfisher, 2 Buzzard and a Peregrine. A Hobby was seen over Hartland Moor and an unringed adult Osprey was also spotted fishing over the channel before heading towards the Wareham Channel. A second unringed Osprey (juvenile) was observed around in Brands Bay and showed to within 40m of the hide.

Large mobile flock of Avocet and Black-tailed Godwit flying up from the salt marsh at Middlebere today. Disturbed by a raptor- Marsh HarrierBuzzardSparrowhawk and Hobby were hunting along the channel. A large Swallow and House Martin passage was recorded through Sunnyside this morning.

Lytchett Fields featured 12 Dunlin, 9 Greenshank, 2 Spotted Redshank, 1 Green Sandpiper, numerous Redshank and several Black-tailed Godwit. A Common Crane was also seen over the Fields, along with 2 Osprey and singles of Peregrine and Marsh Harrier. An unusual visitor to Brownsea Lagoon was captured on our webcam – 4 Peacock spent the morning roaming around.

Peacock ‘flock’ – Brownsea Lagoon


Harbour Update – posted 27/09/19

Posted on: September 27th, 2019 by Birds of Poole Harbour

The strong westerlies today may seem a little disruptive (with boat trips to Brownsea Island cancelled) but the conditions also make for excellent birding opportunities. Outside of the Harbour’s recording area a Sabine’s Gull was observed off Hengistbury Head and a Long-tailed Skua from Mudeford, Christchurch.

Scarce migrants are certainly passing through the harbour, so now’s a great time to check a local patch! Osprey continue to pass through the Harbour with sightings coming in from Lytchett Bay, Holton Pools and Shiptal point, Arne. The individual at Lytchett was first spotted in a dead tree opposite French’s Viewpoint. Other notable sightings at the site included 2 Spotted Redshank, 1 Ruff, 4 Green Sandpiper, 4 Greenshank, 1 Marsh Harrier and 1 Sparrowhawk.

5 Turnstone and a single Swallow was recorded at Sandbanks while a Marsh harrier was seen hunting over Slepe Moor this morning. The Poole Harbour Spoonbill flock continues to build, today recorded the highest count of the autumn with 50 individuals logged at Shipstal, Arne.

Marsh Harrier – Slepe Moor – Simon Kidner


Harbour Update – posted 27/09/19

Posted on: September 27th, 2019 by Birds of Poole Harbour

The strong westerlies today may seem a little disruptive (with boat trips to Brownsea Island cancelled) but the conditions also make for excellent birding opportunities. Outside of the Harbour’s recording area a Sabine’s Gull was observed off Hengistbury Head and a Long-tailed Skua from Mudeford, Christchurch.

Scarce migrants are certainly passing through the harbour, so now’s a great time to check a local patch! Ospreycontinue to pass through the Harbour with sightings coming in from Lytchett Bay, Holton Pools and Shiptal point, Arne. The individual at Lytchett was first spotted in a dead tree opposite French’s Viewpoint. Other notable sightings at the site included 2 Spotted Redshank, 1 Ruff, 4 Green Sandpiper, 4 Greenshank, 1 Marsh Harrier and 1 Sparrowhawk.

Turnstone and a single Swallow was recorded at Sandbanks while a Marsh harrier was seen hunting over Slepe Moor this morning. The Poole Harbour Spoonbill flock continues to build, today recorded the highest count of the autumn with 50 individuals logged at Shipstal, Arne.

Marsh Harrier – Slepe Moor – Simon Kidner


Harbour Update – posted 26/09/19

Posted on: September 26th, 2019 by Birds of Poole Harbour

A blustery day in the harbour again today but not much rain so conditions were a little better for birding. Over on the Brownsea Lagoon c100 Redshank, 14 Curlew, 2 Avocet, 2 Swallow, 1 Chiffchaff, 4 BlacktailedGodwit, 2 Greenshank, 1 Peregrine, 4 Ringed Plover, 4 Dunlin, c10 Pied Wagtail, c200 Teal and 1 BrentGoose were recorded along with c40 Cormorants .

With a very high tide 1 un-ringed Osprey was seen over at Lytchett Fields and another at Holton Pools, likely the same late migratory individual that was there yesterday. Also at Lytchett Fields was a late Juvenile CommonTern, 1 Ruff, 4 Green Sandpiper, 2 Greenshank, many Meadow Pipits, a lone Lapwing and a Grey Wagtail.

There were 2 Hobby around Middlebere plus single a Spoonbill and Whimbrel together with 250+ Avocet. And also 3 Hobby, a single Woodlark and 1 Marsh Harrier from Hyde’s Heath.

It seemed there was a massive Meadow Pipit movemnet going on this morning with parties overhead and out on short pasture across the whole harbour.

Over at Swineham a Female Merlin was seen chasing down Meadow Pipits and Starlings. 5 Yellow Wagtail and c50 Black-tailed Godwit were also logged. Movements of c40 Meadow Pipits were also coming in off of Branksome Chine.

The birds are starting to get more confident with the bird feeders at Holten Lee after being absent for a few weeks.  A male Great Spotted Woodpecker, a Robin, a Blue Tit, several Goldfinch and a Chaffinch have been seen on the Holton Lee Webcam.

 Osprey – Lytchett Fields

 Common Tern – Lytchett Fields


Harbour Update – posted 26/09/19

Posted on: September 26th, 2019 by Birds of Poole Harbour

A blustery day in the harbour again today but not much rain so conditions were a little better for birding. Over on the Brownsea Lagoon c100 Redshank, 14 Curlew, 2 Avocet, 2 Swallow, 1 Chiffchaff, 4 Blacktailed Godwit, 2 Greenshank, 1 Peregrine, 4 Ringed Plover, 4 Dunlin, c10 Pied Wagtail, c200 Teal and 1 Brent Goose were recorded along with c40 Cormorants .

With a very high tide 1 un-ringed Osprey was seen over at Lytchett Fields and another at Holton Pools, likely the same late migratory individual that was there yesterday. Also at Lytchett Fields was a late Juvenile Common Tern, 1 Ruff, 4 Green Sandpiper, 2 Greenshank, many Meadow Pipits, a lone Lapwing and a Grey Wagtail.

There were 2 Hobby around Middlebere plus single a Spoonbill and Whimbrel together with 250+ Avocet. And also 3 Hobby, a single Woodlark and 1 Marsh Harrier from Hyde’s Heath.

It seemed there was a massive Meadow Pipit movemnet going on this morning with parties overhead and out on short pasture across the whole harbour.

Over at Swineham a Female Merlin was seen chasing down Meadow Pipits and Starlings. 5 Yellow Wagtail and c50 Black-tailed Godwit were also logged. Movements of c40 Meadow Pipits were also coming in off of Branksome Chine.

The birds are starting to get more confident with the bird feeders at Holten Lee after being absent for a few weeks.  A male Great Spotted Woodpecker, a Robin, a Blue Tit, several Goldfinch and a Chaffinch have been seen on the Holton Lee Webcam.

 Osprey – Lytchett Fields

 Common Tern – Lytchett Fields


Call 01202 641 003