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 June, 2023

Harbour Update – posted 30/06/23

Posted on: June 30th, 2023 by Birds of Poole Harbour

Despite the foul weather there were a few decent birds from todays Osprey viewing sessions including distant fly by of White-tailed Eagle, fly over Red Kite, 17 Mistle Thrush and 3 Woodlark. At Lytchett Fields the first 2 Greenshank of the autumn arrived and there were still 4 Little Ringed Plover. There was a decent wader arrival in Brands Bay too with 6 Grey Plover, 34 Eurasian Curlew, 5 Black-tailed Godwit, 3 Dunlin and 8 Common Redshank. 

We also had a repeat visit today from our new male Osprey ‘374’ who’s been traveling the south coast far and wide since his arrival earlier in May. We’re pretty sure he visited our nest site on May 12th before then being photographed in Wiltshire the following day. Then, on June 8th he was photographed in Wareham Forest before then disappearing off and being photographed in East Sussex five days later on June 13th. Then, today, we got an exciting photo from one of our other nest cam traps which showed ‘374’ settled on another of our harbour platforms briefly. He could well have left again already and be in Devon, Hampshire or Wales. However, this is classic behaviour of 2-year old males, spending the summer exploring and then regularly returning to his natal area. No doubt we’ll see him on other nest platforms over the next few months. We just need him to cross paths with the un-ringed female that was around earlier this spring.

Male Osprey ‘374’ – Ardingly Reservoir, East Sussex, June 13th – Tony Titchmarsh

Male Osprey ‘374”s brief visit to a harbour nest platform today

Harbour Update – posted 29/06/23

Posted on: June 29th, 2023 by Birds of Poole Harbour

There was more signs of return autumn passage today with 5 Little Ringed Plover at Lytchett Fields, an early Whimbrel in Lytchett Bay and a Common Sandpiper at Holme Lane GP. Plus, 10 Curlew and 8 Common Redshank are now already beginning to be seen in Holes Bay. In Upton CP last night 2 juvenile Tawny Owl were calling. At the Osprey nest yesterday evening the first post-breeding flock of Mistle Thrush was seen with a group of 24 feeding togther. White-tailed Eagle pair G466 and G463 were viewable from the Ham Common viewpoint on and off throughout the day, to the far right looking out towards the gull islands. A Red Kite drifted over Wareham meadows and the Mediterranean Gulls on Poole Quay continue to impress.

Mediterranean Gull – Poole Quay – Christopher Teague

Harbour Update – posted 28/06/23

Posted on: June 28th, 2023 by Birds of Poole Harbour

There was another Osprey at the nest site briefly this afternoon. We’re not sure if it was ringed or not, but thats the third or fourth visit of a passing Osprey in the last couple of weeks, which we know consists of at least 2 different individuals. One that was ringed and one that wasn’t. There were a minimum of 3 White-tailed Eagle out in the Wareham Channel along with 2 Marsh Harrier and a Hobby off Slepe Heath. There was some good news yesterday with all 3 juvenile Peregrines at Barclays seen in the air together for the first time in a few weeks.

Finally, big thanks to everyone who kindly donated towards our Birthday fundraiser. After just 24 hours we hit 10% of our target which is great. If you’d like to help us achieve our target then you can DONATE HERE

Harbour Update – posted 27/06/23

Posted on: June 27th, 2023 by Birds of Poole Harbour

Today we’re 10 years old! Can you believe it. It only feels like yesterday we built our first website and were starting to promote Poole Harbour as an exciting place to come and watch birds. How the landscape has changed over the last 10 years with new, thriving species back in the landscape, and a whole new audience enjoying this amazing place. It’s been a real rollercoaster, with multiple challenges and experiences along the way, but at the very heart of all we’ve achieved has been the support we’ve had from everyone who believed in us and were keen to see us succeed. With that belief, we hope we’ve built a charity that people can trust and follow, knowing we’ll always do all we can to help support Poole Harbour’s bird life. For that, we’d like to thank everyone who’s supported us in any capacity. To celebrate our 10th birthday we’ve launched our ’10 for 10 campaign’ where we’re trying to run £10k over 10 weeks. If you’d like to help us achieve our target then you can DONATE HERE

To celebrate our birthday we also hosted an evening cruise tonight and were rewarded with a phenomenal fish catch from male Osprey 022 in the Wareham Channel off the side of the boat. We also managed to jam in on the White-tailed Eagle pair G466 and G463, along with the first 5 Common Sandpiper of the autumn in the mouth of the Frome. Plus 1 Marsh Harrier over Giggers Island, c200 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Peregrine over Poole Quay, 4 Avocet and 1 dark-bellied Brent Goose on the Brownsea Lagoon and 2 (moulting) Eider off Furzey Island. This morning the White-tailed Eagle pair were viewable from the Ham Common viewpoint and were witnessed hunting Black-headed Gull chicks off the gull island where a rough count 546 chicks were counted.

Male Osprey 022 – Wareham Channel – Clare Slade

Harbour Update – posted 26/06/23

Posted on: June 26th, 2023 by Birds of Poole Harbour

All quiet across the harbour today, although Spotted Flycatcher were confirmed to be breeding in Upton CP which is a decent recent record. There were 4 White-tailed Eagle in the harbour at dawn, until 2 ventured off towards the coast but the pair G466 and G463 were viewable off Ham Common viewpoint mid-morning. There’s been a stunning adult Mediterranean Gull hanging around outside the cafes of Poole Quay which is an unusual record as they’re not often viewed as ‘street gulls’ despite their regular occurrence  further along the quay at Baiter in the early spring. They tend to be a bit shyer than their Black-headed Gull relatives but todays bird was quite happily feeding just yards from lunch goers outside Deli on the Quay!

Harbour Update – posted 25/06/23

Posted on: June 25th, 2023 by Birds of Poole Harbour

With July arriving at the end of the week and the temperature forecast to drop, a short break from the summer heat wouldn’t go a miss, especially if some rain can be provided too. We’re already seeing some more autumn movers with more Green Sandpipers turning up today with 1 at Coombe Heath, Arne and another at Swineham. Also at Coombe Heath a Hobby drifted over, spooking a roosting Nightjar on the heath. At Swineham a territorial Redshank pair were active and vocal near the footpath, suggesting they had young near by. An Osprey drifted north over Sandy Lane, Upton this morning and there are still 4 White-tailed Eagle in the Wareham Channel area, with several sightings from the Ham Common viewpoint throughout the day.

Common Redshank – Swineham – Peter Moore

Common Redshank – Swineham – Peter Moore

Green Sandpiper – Swineham – Peter Moore

Marsh Harrier – Swineham – Peter Moore

Harbour Update – posted 24/06/23

Posted on: June 24th, 2023 by Birds of Poole Harbour

There were more signs of autumn migration getting underway today with a mighty fine full summer plumaged Spotted Redshank in Middlebere. These early Spotted Redshank tend to be females which leave the breeding grounds in the north earlier than the males, leaving them behind to raise the chicks. Middlebere, Lytchett Fields and (when it’s open) the Brownsea Lagoon are often the best places to try and see full breeding plumaged Spotted Redshank this time of year. There was also 44 Curlew and a Greenshank in Middlebere which would also suggest a possible early returners. The same 4 White-tailed Eagle were in and around the Wareham Channel area today with birds coming and going across the area with individuals seen in Lytchett Bay, over Middlebere and at Morden Bog.

Spotted Redshank – Middlebere – Garry Hayman

Harbour Update – posted 23/06/23

Posted on: June 23rd, 2023 by Birds of Poole Harbour

Having been rare in the harbour in recent years, a Quail singing out on Wareham Common was a welcome sound early this morning. It also sang briefly this evening too. Hobby were thinly spread with 1 over the Piddle valley and Wareham Common, 1 over Hydes Heath and another in the Frome Valley. There were 3 White-tailed Eagle in the Wareham Channel area and an Osprey in Morden Bog this AM seemed to be ‘a visitor’ as it was seen when both CJ7 and 022 were on the nest.

Harbour Update – posted 22/06/23

Posted on: June 23rd, 2023 by Birds of Poole Harbour

It’s getting very warm again! Perfect for Nightjar watching, which is why it was no surprise that they were incredibly active on our Nightjar walk at Slepe Heath last night. A minimum of 8 were seen, but there was lots of territorial chasing, wing clapping, singing and calling going on. Just spectacular to watch against a warm, glowing sunset over Poole Harbour. Also on Slepe Heath was 1 Cuckoo, 3-4 Dartford Warbler, a Kestrel family in a box and a Glow Worm to top off the walk. The 2 over-summering Eider were in Poole harbour entrance, 3 White-tailed Eagle were ‘loitering’ around the Wareham Channel area and there were 2 Hobby high over the Piddle Valley.

Nightjar walk on Slepe Heath last night

Sunset over Slepe Heath

Harbour Update – posted 21/06/23

Posted on: June 21st, 2023 by Birds of Poole Harbour

Of all places, it was Sainsbury’s car park in Wareham as to where it was all happening today. Well, for 30 seconds at least with a lunch run around midday resulting in an Osprey carrying a fish flying over the car park heading towards the nest site, then no less than 10 seconds later a White-tailed Eagle flew in the opposite direction heading towards Swineham. There were actially 4 White-tailed Eagle in the Wareham Channel today, G466, G463, G801 and G416. There was also another intruder Osprey at the nest site today, this time around 09:25, but only a brief sighting by our team meant we couldn’t sex it, or see if it was ringed.

Female Osprey CJ7 mantling over the nest this AM when the intruder passed high overhead 


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