Latest Sightings

Harbour Update - posted 18/10/18

Well, we thought the vis-mig would pick up and it certainly did. The main area watched/counted this morning was South Haven, Studland which logged 88 Song Thrush, 13 Redwing and 39 Meadow Pipit as well as many hundreds of Chaffinch, Linnet, Siskin and Goldfinch with singles of Yellowhammer and Woodlark too. Amazingly 66 Spoonbill were counted on Shipstal Point, Arne. Where another 11 have turned up from is anyone’s guess but with 75 logged on Oct 19th last year, will we see a late surge and yet another record-breaking year for Spoonbill? Yet again the 2 Cattle Egret were on the west side of the Wareham to Stoborough causeway. At Lytchett Fields 45 Skylark migrated over the site during the morning and there were 2 Spotted Redshank, 8 Greenshank, 120+ Redshank and c50 Black-tailed Godwit on the fields. At Holton Pools a flock of 11 Crossbill flew low across in front of the hide and a Peregrine and a Marsh Harrier had a bit of a tussle too. At Middlebere the autumns first Fieldfare were seen with 15 along the lane also 11 Mistle Thrush, 6 Bullfinch, 73 Wigeon, 4 Greenshank, 4 Knot, 1 White Wagtail and a Merlin was on Hartland again.

Peregrine - Holton Pools - John Pick

Harbour Update - posted 17/10/18

The forecast looks good for some visible migration at coastal watch points over the next week or so. With thrush’s, finches, wagtails, pipits and larks on the move, a watch at dawn can be quite spectacular especially at places like South Haven or Ballard Down. Today the first Red-breasted Mergansers were also looked with 5 out in South Deep, off the south shore of Brownsea along with 3 Black-necked Grebe. A Great White Egret was seen on Little Sea, Studland mid afternoon.  From Poole Quay the Kingfisher was seen again near our HQ and 3 Swallow passed over. At Hatch Pond another Kingfisher was seen and a Cetti’s Warbler was heard. Between the harbour mouth and Brownsea 20+ Swallow and 16+ House Martin flew through. And at Baiter there were 11 Turnstone and a Carrion Crow doing its best to disguise its self as a Magpie. On Hartland a female Merlin was in the centre of the moor at dawn, and just 1 Marsh Harrier came out of the roost.

Turnstone - Baiter - John Pick

Carrion Crow - Baiter - John Pick

Harbour Update - posted 16/10/18

The forecast yesterday looked good for a vis-mig session, but at the last minuet the temperature rose quite substantially, enough so that a thick blanket of fog descended up the harbour by late evening. However all was not lost as another Yellow-browed Warbler was found along the coast path from South Beach at Ballard Down and in the gloom a Hawfinch passed over heading NE. There were also some other finches on the move with c30 Siskin, c50 Goldfinch, c30 Linnet, 4 Greenfinch and 2 Chaffinch over along with 5 Skylark, 9 Blackcap, 7 Chiffchaff, c40 Meadow Pipit, 3 Yellowhammer and 1 Reed Bunting passing through and over the area. Several good contenders for freshly arrived Continental Robin were also ringed at our ringing site during the morning too. A moth trapping session as part of our two-year Moths of Poole Harbour study caught the projects first Clifden Nonpareil. On Hartland the Cuckoo that was found on Saturday was still hanging about on SW corner of the moor where there was also a late Common Redstart. On Shipstal Point, a high count for this autumn/winter of 45 Spoonbill were counted. It seems the female Merlin on Hartland is pretty settled and has been seen out in the centre of the moor for almost a week now. A Woodlark passed over Sunnyside at dawn and in the Frome Valley 3 Cattle Egret were next to the railway line up near Holmebridge. 

Continental Robin - Ballard Down 

Clifden Nonpareil - Ballard Down

Harbour Update - posted 15/10/18

With the large number of Yellow-browed Warbler arriving into the UK last week its no surprise that they’re now beginning to trickle in to Dorset and today another was found in the harbour, this time in the PC World drain, next to KFC at Wessex Gate retail park. Not necessarily the first place you’d think of to look for a rare/scarce bird but amazingly today’s was actually the 5th Yellow-browed Warbler to be found at this funny/weird little site in just three years! There were also 3 Blackcap, 3 Common Chiffchaff, 1 Siberian Chiffchaff, 1 Kingfisher and 1 Grey Wagtail there today too. Up on Hartland a Firecrest was in a Long-tailed Tit flock which has prompted us to acknowledge that this autumn Goldcrest are virtually nowhere to be seen. Is anyone else seeing any? The harbour’s first Ring Ouzel of the autumn was seen along the track of Middlebere and Marsh Harriers were at Middlebere, Lytchett Bay and Swineham (all possibly the same birds).  At Lytchett Fields another Firecrest was near the waterworks and out on the fields were c150 Black-tailed Godwit, c40 Dunlin and 60 Meadow Pipit.

Yellow-browed Warbler - PCW Drain - Ian Ballam

Harbour Update - posted 14/10/18

A fairly grim start to the day which eventually cleared thankfully, but there wasn’t much reported over the course of the day. At Middlebere there were 105 Avocet, c200 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Spotted Redshank, 35 Lapwing, 21 Curlew and a Wheatear. In Upton CP there were 2 Firecrest and in both Holes Bay and Lytchett Bay drake pintail were logged arriving in. On and around Hartland Moor there was still 1 female Merlin and a Peregrine with still only 2 Marsh Harrier coming out of the west Poole Harbour roost. At Lytchett Fields there were 2 Spotted Redshank and along Soldiers Road 3 tardy Swallow. On the Wareham to Stoborough causeway the 2 Cattle Egret were again feeding in amongst the cows on the west side of the road.

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