About Birds of Poole Harbour

Welcome to ‘Birds of Poole Harbour’, a charity completely dedicated educating people on the stunning variety of bird life in one of the country’s most picturesque locations, helping you make the most of this truly breath taking natural harbour. From local schools, passionate residents and intrigued tourists 'Birds of Poole Harbour' offers a unique learning opportunity to a large audience with the aim of boosting the profile of bird and wildlife conservation around the harbour.

Our Aspirations

Poole Harbour has been watched, monitored and loved by wildlife enthusiasts since the mid 1700’s. The jewel's in Poole Harbours crown are it’s stunning range of habitats. Rare lowland Dorset heathland borders almost the entire harbour from Canford Heath through to Upton Heath then Holton, Sandford and then on to Wareham when the heathland opens up to vast swathes covering the Arne peninsular, Hartland Moor, Godlingston and Studland, where species like Dartford Warbler, Nightjar and Hobby all thrive.  

With the average depth of Poole Habour being only two feet, vast and complex estuarine systems are created with many creeks and bays, providing excellent feeding areas for over wintering birds. Up to 1500 Avocet over winter plus many thousands of other waders and wintering duck. Dense reed bed’s to the north provide breeding grounds for Bearded Tit and Cetti’s Warbler whilst the Frome Valley offers lush water meadows running down to Bestwall and Swineham. Both coniferous and deciduous woodland offer a nice variation of species from Crossbill and Siskin to Marsh Tit and the scarce Lesser Spotted Woodpecker.

Farmland is prominent to the west and the tall chalk cliffs of Ballard Down give great spring migration opportunities. On a high tide, large open bodies of shallow water offer excellent feeding areas for Divers and Grebes and last but by no means least are the historic islands that stand guard in the centre of the harbour. Brownsea Island, the largest of the islands hosts the vitally important lagoon on it’s eastern shore where up to 10,000 birds can be seen during the colder months on a high tide including up to 20 Spoonbill.

‘Birds of Poole Harbour’ is keen for fellow enthusiasts to learn about the secrets of bird watching in Poole Harbour therefore hosting a wide range of walks and events over the year. Keep an eye out on our events page.

The study of birds and the monitoring of their numbers is vital to the on going conservation efforts that take place, therefor we think it’s only fair to share this information by publishing the data from certain surveys and reports such as WeBS counts (Wetland Bird Surveys).

Finally, ‘Birds of Poole Harbour’ would like to thank you for visiting this website and we look forward to seeing you out in the field. 







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