News Article29/05/2019

New Birds of Poole Harbour engagement HQ to open on Poole Quay on March 1st 2018

Local environmental education charity ‘Birds of Poole Harbour’ opens the doors to its new engagement HQ on Poole Quay at midday on March 1st 2018. The new visitor center styled space looks at interpreting the harbour’s rich and varied bird life, as well as offering a range of interactive experiences that showcases the harbour’s ecological importance. The new quay front location will have touch screen maps allowing visitors to plot and plan routes around the harbour, several listening stations so you can familiarise your self with the calls of local birds, several screens streaming exclusive content and local mini documentaries and it even has its own indoor bird hide!

Set up in 2012, the registered charity has spent the last six years working hard to interpret the harbour’s birds by setting up a range of people engagement initiatives that benefit both the environment and the people who wish to enjoy it. In 2017 Birds of Poole Harbour began their flagship project, an Osprey translocation which see’s them try to restore the Osprey as a breeding bird in Poole Harbour after a 200 year absence due to persecution. As well as this, the charity also engages with around 1400 local school children with their popular school bird boat project whilst also investing in habitat improvement and creation work providing new and different places for people to try and connect with wildlife.

Paul Morton, the charities co-founder explained

“this really is a milestone for us, we’ve spent a lot of time figuring out who our audience is and making sure everything we do supports and engages with those people and extends their understanding of Poole Harbour, its beauty and its importance for birds. We’ve seen a huge spike of interest in our work in relation to people wanting to learn more about their local environment as well as birds and with our new HQ opening on March 1st this will hopefully act as a ‘go to’ focal point in which visitors can get a full overview of just how rich and important Poole Harbour is not only birds but wider biodiversity too”

With its prime location on Poole Quay front the charities new visitor center hopes to engage with a whole new audience of visitors and tourists to the area as well as them looking forward to meeting and speaking with locals who also have a keen interest in local environmental and bird related topics.

Paul Morton concluded,

“We’ve met many wonderful people during our first six years as a charity and we can’t thank everyone enough for their support up until now. Our new engagement HQ is now going to provide a focal point for our work allowing us to speak with and enthuse with people whom perhaps hadn’t heard of us before, or who simply just want a bit of advise on where they can see an Avocet or two!

The harbour is recognised as nationally and internationally important area for several different species of bird and is also afforded SPA (Special Protection Area) designation. It is also a specially protected RAMSAR site and has numerous SSSI’s (Sites of Special Scientific Interest) bordering the harbour.

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