August 2016

Harbour Update - posted 29/08/16

A stiller, calmer day produced a selection of migrants from various locations. At Swineham 7 Yellow Wagtail were in with the cattle opposite the entrance to Swineham Farm, also 1 Spotted Flycatcher, 2 Whitethroat, 2 Sedge Warbler, 2 Willow Warbler and several Chiffchaff and Reed Warbler still about. At Holton Heath there were still 6+ Spotted Flycatcher about along with a post breeding flock of 11 Mistle Thrush feeding on Rowan Berries. At Middlebere there were 2 Osprey feeding together in the trees at Middlebere, one even looked as if it was going to perch up on the nesting platform opposite the Middlebere hide but at the last minute decided not to. On Lytchett Fields there was an arrival of Ruff with 5 by late evening along side 2 Little Stint still and a nice selection of Common and Green Sandpipers, Common Snipe, Redshank, Black-tailed Godwit and Lapwing. On the Brownsea Lagoon there were 2 Curlew Sandpiper, 10 Spoonbill, 30+ Avocet, 1 Spotted Redshank and 7 Greenshank.

We also placed on social media this evening that after analysing all our night recordings from August 22nd to 26th its likely we may have had a passing of Ortolan Bunting each night over the five nights, including 3 likely pass overs on the night of the 24th.  If you combine this info with the news that Nick Hopper had 4 over Portland on the night of Aug 24th then it seems something very interesting is going on with this species at night during the latter part of August. Our recordings between August 22nd and 26th consist of several different call types ranging from full sequences of flight calls to just singular calls although all are distinct and seem to be consistent with Ortolan Bunting. We’ll continue our night recording sessions throughout the autumn combined with field observation work too to see if we can experience and gain more evidence of this phenomenon.

Spotted Flycatcher - Swineham - Peter Moore

Common Whitethroat - Swineham - Peter Moore

Sedge Warbler - Swineham - Peter Moore

Reed Warbler - Swineham - Peter Moore

Harbour Update - posted 28/08/16

With the SW wind settled for a few days now, migrants are becoming harder to come by. At Lytchett Fields 2 Little Stint, 2 Ringed Plover, 4 Greenshank, 44 Dunlin, 1 Whimbrel and 1 Knot were the pick of the bunch on an early round. A corking adult male Redstart was on Holton Lee heath whilst in Holes Bay there were 204 Black-tailed Godwit, 165 Redshank, 1 Common Sandpiper, 2 Knot, 2 Snipe and 6 Ringed Plover along with 1 Little Grebe back for ‘the winter’ 21 Little Egret, 125 Teal, 2 Raven and a Spotted Flycatcher. Night recording has been very quiet since last weeks bonanza night with just a handful of Tree Pipit, Robin and the odd wader in recent nights, what we really need is another dark, dank and wet still night like last Thursday to bring the birds down to an audible level. The Osprey was feeding on a fish again in the dead trees at Middlebere.

Harbour Updates - posted 27/08/16

Efforts to try and catch Aquatic Warbler this autumn have so far been in vein but today saw an incredible form of compensation when 18 Grasshopper Warbler were ringed during a session at Lytchett Bay in just a few hours, beating the previous highest ever total for the site by ten in a single morning. Also in and around Lytchett Bay/Fields were 2 Redstart, 1 Spotted Flycatcher, 1 Whinchat, only a handful of Yellow Wagtail, 3 juv Little Stint, 1 Curlew Sandpiper, 3 Common Sandpiper, 15+ Green Sandpiper, 3 Knot, 200 Black-tailed Godwit, 30+ Dunlin, 100+ Redshank and 7 Greenshank. Night recording from our listening station was much quieter last night with just 11 Tree Pipit, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Redshank, 2 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Little Ringed Plover and 8 passerine calls. The Brownsea Lagoon today was special and featured 2 juv Little Stint, 10 Curlew Sandpiper, 4 Knot, 1 Sanderling, 1 Grey Plover, 70 Dunlin, 16 Ringed Plover, 86 Redshank, 1 Spotted Redshank, 9 Greenshank, 10 Spoonbill and a Firecrest near the Villa. Osprey sightings came from Lytchett Fields, the Wareham Channel and Middlebere. 

Stonechat - Lytchett Fields

Blackcap - Holes Bay north

Osprey - Middlebere

Common Sandpiper - Lytchett Fields

Harbour Updates - posted 26/08/16

With more night migration research going on we were amazed to find we had another Ortolan Bunting over our listening station in Old town Poole along with 1 Redshank, 1 Ringed Plover, 1 Common Sandpiper, 25-30 Tree Pipit and 22 passerine calls. We understand that the Portland Obs guys have also been encountering Ortolan Bunting over their site at night, which provides a fascinating insight into what’s going on above our heads at night along the south coast. Lytchett Fields seems to have quietened down a bit with only 1 Little Ringed Plover, 6 Curlew Sandpiper, 10+ Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 1 Ruff, 2 Kingfisher, 4 fly-over Yellow Wagtail and 1 Tree Pipit the real birds of note, along with the standard Lapwing, Black-tailed Godwit, Redshank and Snipe. Along Soldiers Road there were 6 Spotted Flycatcher and a Redstart and an Osprey was in the dead trees at Middlebere for most of the day with 1 Grey Plover, 1 Whimbrel, 2 Avocet, 2 Spoonbill in the channel and another Redstart along the lane. At Holton Heath 10 Spotted Flycatcher were feeding on the woodland edge. 

 Ortolan Bunting - Calls of night time migrant - Old Town Poole Listening Station 25/08/16 @ 3:15am

Harbour Updates - posted 25/08/16

A wet muggy night produced a reasonably big Tree Pipit movement with 931 individual calls logged between 21:00 and 04:30 from our night listening station in Old Town Poole. This may seem massive but based on the fact some birds were calling 15-20 times as they passed over then best estimates suggest around 50-75 individuals passed over during the night. Also recorded were 223 passerine calls, all likely to be mostly Robin with a few Pied and Spotted Flycatcher in amongst them, 4 Common Sandpiper, 1 Dunlin, 2 Green Sandpiper, 6 Yellow Wagtail, 2 Ringed Plover, 1 possible Curlew Sandpiper and amazingly what sounds like another Ortolan Bunting!  At Middlebere there was a single Osprey again with 6 Spoonbill and at Lytchett Fields there 1 Little Ringed Plover, 6 Curlew Sandpiper, 2 Ruff and a Wood Sandpiper were logged. On the Brownsea Lagoon a single Curlew Sandpiper was present with 4 Spoonbill. At the Twin Sails site there were singles of Redstart and Whinchat with 2 Wheatear also present and a handful of Yellow Wagtail and Tree Pipit overhead.

Harbour Updates - posted 24/08/16

So far this year we’ve analysed hundreds of hours worth of night recordings from our listening station in Old Town Poole with some fascinating results such as Woodcock, Mandarin Duck, Cuckoo and little Ringed Plover all passing over but the cream of the crop went over last night when an Ortolan Bunting passed over close to the microphone at 2am, this being only the second (possibly third) Poole Harbour record. Apparently they’re a common night migrant down in southern Europe so are we just discovering that actually they’re a regular night migrant here in the UK too with news that one passed over Portland late at night on the same night too! Also recorded this night were 22 Tree Pipit, 4 Robin, 1 Redshank, 2 Oystercatcher, 1 Curlew, 1 Whimbrel and 1 flycatcher sp. On Lytchett Fields there were 8 Curlew Sandpiper, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 1 Little Stint, 2 Ruff, 2 Knot, 3 Yellow Wagtail, 3 Willow Warbler and several Willow Warbler overhead. On the Brownsea Lagoon there were 4 Curlew Sandpiper and 9 Spoonbill. An Osprey was in Middlebere. 

Ortolan Bunting - Calls of a night time migrant - Old Town Poole Listening Station 2am 24/08/16

Harbour Updates - posted 23/08/16

Things seemed to have settled slightly but we’re hoping that the mixture of light SE winds and the forecast rain in the coming days it could all get going again. Ospreys today were seen over Lytchett Bay and 2 over Arne. At Lytchett Fields there were still 8 Curlew Sandpiper, 2 Little Stint, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 1 Little Ringed Plover, 2 Ruff, 10+ Green Sandpiper, 4 Common Sandpiper, 6 Greenshank, 20+ Snipe, 60+ Lapwing and 800+ Black-tailed Godwit. On the Brownsea Lagoon there were 9 Spoonbill and 4 Curlew Sandpiper.

Curlew Sandpiper - Lytchett Fields - Ian Ballam

Harbour Updates - posted 22/08/16

At Middlebere there was 1 Spoonbill, 2 Spotted Redshank, and 3 Greenshank. At Lytchett Fields there were still 8 Curlew Sandpiper, 2 Little Stint, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 2 Spotted Redshank and 1 Ruff.

Ruff - Lytchett Fields - Ian Ballam

Harbour Updates - posted 21/08/16

Record numbers of Black-tailed Godwit were on Lytchett Fields today with a count of 1031 at midday. It was also packed with other species such as 15 Green Sandpiper, 5 Greenshank, 20+ Snipe, 170+ Redshank, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 2 Ruff, 5 Ringed Plover, 1 Little Ringed Plover, 9 Curlew Sandpiper, 60+ Lapwing, 60+ Dunlin, 1 Little Stint, 1 Spotted Redshank, 4 Common Sandpiper, 1 Knot and 200 Teal! An Osprey passed over Arne. 

harbour Updates - posted 20/08/16

Despite yesterdays good run of birds, coverage was at a minimum today with just an Osprey off Swineham Point and one each of Lesser Whitethroat, Redstart and Spotted Flycatcher around the Swineahm pits reported. An Osprey passed over Lytchett Fields briefly and disturbed 6 Curlew Sandpiper, 2 Little Stint, 2 Ruff and 1 Little Ringed Plover.

Osprey - Lytchett Fields - Ian Ballam

Harbour Updates - posted 19/08/16

Amazingly, despite the wader fest at Lytchett Fields it was actually a Wryneck that took centre stage today which darted out of a gorge bush, sat on the viewpoint sign for several seconds and then disappeared! Wader-wise an incredible 6 Curlew Sandpiper, 3 Little Stint, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 2 Ruff, 2 Little Ringed Plover, 10+ Ringed Plover, 90+ Dunlin, 800+ Black-tailed Godwit, 200+ Redshank, 15+ Green Sandpiper, 8 Greenshank and 150+ Teal were counted. On Brownsea there were 6 Spoonbill, 1 Little Stint, 2 Ruff, 2 Spotted Redshank, 6 Greenshank, 1 Knot and 4 Curlew Sandpiper

Harbour Updates - posted 18/08/16

With the wader potential creeping up a notch in the harbour more and more people seem to be visiting Lytchett Fields, with 1 Spoonbill, 2 Ruff, 2 Little Stint, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 2 Little Ringed Plover, 500+ Black-tailed Godwit, 150+ Redshank, 11 Greenshank, 4 Common Sandpiper, 16 Green Sandpiper, 25 Snipe, 10 Ringed Plover and 40+ Dunlin present there today. Just outside the area were 2 Osprey at Morden Bog which will almost certainly be commuting to the harbour and back to feed. 

Harbour Updates - posted 17/08/16

We apologise for the lack of sightings over the last week, just as it seems as the harbour has gone wader crazy! We returned from Birdfair on Monday morning and have been playing catch up ever since. We will update a full list of sightings as of today and we hope that over the last week you’ve been able to catch up with the wealth of bird life the harbour had had to offer! Starting at of course Lytchett Fields where waders were still the order of the day with 2 Little Stint, 1 Ruff, c40 Dunlin, 2 Common Sandpiper, 5 Greenshank, and Redshank, Lapwing and Black-tailed Godwit. Also there a Spotted Flycatcher, 1 Peregrine and a Yellow-legged Gull. Spoonbills were spread between Brownsea and Middlebere with 5 on the lagoon and 3 in the Middlebere Channel.  

Harbour Updates

We apologise for the lack of sightings over the last week, but we were away at the Birdfair from mid-last week and are catching up on sightings now. We aim to have all up to date days and sightings up on the website by Wednesday evening.

In the mean time, if you have any sightings from within the Poole Harbour area please send them to us at


Harbour Update - posted 16/08/16

Lytchett Fields was a real wader fest today with 12 species recorded. Highlights from the site included 2 Little Stint, 1 Ruff, 1 Little Ringed Plover, 5 Ringed Plover, 8 Snipe and several Common Sandpiper as well as Redshank, Dunlin, Black-tailed Godwit, Lapwing, Greenshank and Green Sandpiper. There was also a site rarity as a Yellowhammer pitched down in one of the hedgerows and 2 Yellow Wagtail were out on the fields. A ringing session from Lytchett Bay saw only a small passage of Sedge Warbler and Reed Warbler with Whitethroat and several Willow Warbler also ringed. In scrub at the north end of Holes Bay Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Sedge Warbler, Willow Warbler, Blackcap and Chiffchaff were all noted. On Brownsea up to 9 Spoonbill are back now with numbers likely to increase all the way through September and in to October. Poole Harbour hit a national record of 60 Spoonbill on October 17th 2015….will we exceed that total this year? Also on Brownsea today were 41 Avocet, 20 Ringed Plover, 5 Greenshank, 1 Turnstone, 1 Common Sandpiper and 21 Curlew. At Arne an Osprey was seen several times between the Wareham Channel and Middlebere also a Marsh Harrier there. Our efforts of night migration sound recording are going from bad to worse again with just 2 Tree Pipit recorded. There were several very distant wader calls but none that were really identifiable other than some passing Oystercatcher.

Common Sandpiper - Lytchett Fields - Ian Ballam

Harbour Update - posted 15/08/16

This is nice now, seeing Osprey appear on our sightings page on a daily basis now with one seeing multiple times during the day as it first entered the harbour early morning and was later seen again around the Arne peninsular at 11am and then again at 3pm. Later on in august and by the beginning of September its not unusual to have sightings of two sometimes three together so here’s hoping more arrive over the next couple of weeks. At Lytchett Fields 2 Little Stint arrived and were settled on the fields with 1 Ruff, 500+ Black-tailed Godwit, 4 Common Sandpiper, 6 Green Sandpiper, 10 Snipe, 2 Yellow Wagtail and 2 Stonechat. At South Haven, Studland there was 1 Spotted Flycatcher, 1 Tree Pipit and 2 Garden Warbler. Last nights sound recording session was again fairly quiet but Tree Pipit are now a regular feature (or have been for the last three nights anyway). Also recorded was 1 Green Sandpiper, 1 Redshank, 1 Dunlin, 1 Ringed Plover and a single passerine call. 

 Green Sandpiper - Calls of a night time migrant - Old Town Poole 01:42

Tree Pipit - Calls of a night time migrant - Old Town Poole Listening Station 02:17

Harbour Update - posted 14/08/16

There was another early Merlin that dashed across Arne moors early morning and the third new Marsh Harrier of the week arrived in the Wareham Channel. At Lytchett Fields the juv Ruff was still present with 5 Greenshank, 7 Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 10 Snipe, 20+ Dunlin, 5 Ringed Plover whilst migrants around the fields included a Spotted Flycatcher, 5 Sedge Warbler and 3 Willow Warbler. Night recording from our listening station in Old Town Poole picked up slightly with the first recording of Tree Pipit of the autumn around 1am and two passerine calls, likely to be either Pied or Spotted Flycatcher. Also recorded between 21:30 and 04:30 were a small flock of Common Tern just after midnight, 1 Redshank, 1 Common Sandpiper and 3 Oystercatcher.

Harbour Update - posted 13/08/16

From the Arne/Middlebere area there was late news of a Great White Egret yesterday in Middlebere with 35 Curlew also in the Channel and 1 Redstart on the heath. On Lytchett Fields The Ruff was still present with up to 16 Common Snipe, 1 Little Ringed Plover, 1 Green Sandpiper, 30+ Lapwing, 2 Yellow Wagtail and plenty of Black-tailed Godwit. This morning was also our monthly field trip, this time hosted up on Ballard Down, an area we’ve never visited on one of our trips before and it was absolutely stunning. Migrants were in evidence but slightly thin on the ground as 1-2 Lesser Whitethroat, 5+ Common Whitethroat, 1 Spotted Flycatcher, 5+ Blackcap, Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, a few House Martin and Swallow over plus a big flock of 70+ Linnet moving through along the cliff top. Out in Studland Bay Sandwich Terns and Med Gulls were feeding in a mixed flock and a Gannet was out off Old Harry. Along Soldiers Road, Hartland a Whinchat was on a barbwire fence feeding with 2 Stonechat.  An Osprey passed over/near the northern shores of the harbour. Night recording from our listening station Friday night into Saturday was again very quiet with no sign of night passage. 

Old Harry and Ballard Field Trip - Barbara Bisset


Ruff - Lytchett Fields - Ian Ballam



Harbour Update - posted 12/08/16

Migration is still a bit sluggish at present with little or no sign of any big passage of birds yet. Don’t get us wrong, waders are moving through in small numbers and passerines are now begging to appear but we’re just being impatient! Today 2 Little Tern were out in Shell Bay and a Redstart was at South Haven with a Whitethroat. At Middlebere 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 14 Shelduck, 1 Curlew, 1 Greenshank, 2 Grey Plover, 1 Hobby and 6 Little Egret were recorded with Whitethroat still feeding young along the track. At Lytchett Fields there were 22 Lapwing, 1 Knot, 10 Dunlin, 3 Ringed Plover, 4 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Green Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 3 Snipe, 1 Sparrowhawk and 2 Yellow Wagtail. On Brownsea counts consisted of 6 Curlew, 2 Whimbrel, 4 Spotted Redshank, 9 Greenshank, 216 Redshank, 268 Black-tailed Godwit, 31 Avocet, 71 Oystercatcher, 59 Ringed Plover, 2 Red Knot, 324 Dunlin, 2 Sanderling, 2 Turnstone, 1 Spoonbill, 1 Kingfisher, 48 Teal, 6 Common Sandpiper and a family party of Firecrest near the Mac Hide entrance. In Holes Bay north a Lesser Whitethroat was sin scrub with 10+ Willow Warbler, 5+ Chiffchaff and several Blackcap.

Night recording last night from our listening station in Old Town Poole produced a bit of quality rather than quantity as two (night recording) year ticks were encountered. The first was a Little Ringed Plover that passed over at 23:54 and even more surprisingly an Arctic Tern at 23:07. 

Little Ringed Plover - Calls of a night time migrant 23:54 - Old Town Poole 11/08/16

 Arctic Tern - calls of a night time migrant 23:07 - Old Town Poole 11/08/16

Harbour Update - posted 11/08/16

It seems amazing to think that by this time last year we had already had 2 Osprey in the harbour for almost two weeks, however our first ‘hunting’ Osprey of the autumn didn’t arrive until today with one catching a fish in the Wareham Channel area before making its way over towards Arne. In Middlebere early evening there were 2 Dunlin, 1 Grey Plover, 1 Ringed Plover, 4 Greenshank and 1 Yellow-legged Gull. At Lytchett Fields the Ruff was still present with 25 Dunlin, 1+ Common Sandpiper, 8 Ringed Plover and a large juvenile Peregrine was upsetting all the Black-tailed Godwit. In Holes Bay north a fresh juvenile Sparrowhawk was getting harassed by 10+ Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff. There was also a nice sign of ‘heron’ migration as 2 Little Egret passed Old Harry rocks, presumably to enter the harbour and add to the many hundred that are currently present. Night recording was again pretty fruitless with just one 1 Redshank and a possible Golden Plover sound recorded all night!

Common Sandpiper - Lytchett Fields - Shaun Robson


Juvenile Sparrowhawk - Holes Bay north - Paul Morton

Harbour Update - posted 10/08/16

A fresh juv Ruff at Lytchett Fields was new in which was feeding along side 5 Ringed Plover, 11 Dunlin, 7 Green Sandpiper and 2 Common Sandpiper whilst passerine migrants included 1 Whitethroat and 5 Willow Warbler. In Holes Bay north a big flock of mixed Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff moved through the scrub and out on the mud 2 Common Sandpiper were near the bridge, 200+ Black-tailed Godwit were again feeding in the center of the bay and 3 Yellow-legged Gull were on the mud. There were 2 Spoonbill on the Brownsea Lagoon with 4 also reported at Shipstal Point, Arne.  Night recording was a dead loss with absolutely nothing passing over all night other than just a few distant Oystercatcher.

Ringed Plover - Lytchett Bay - Ian Ballam

Greenshank - Lytchett Bay - Ian Ballam


Ruff - Lytchett Fields - Paul Morton

Harbour Update - posted 09/08/16

Well, you wait so long for a Little Stint then like buses two come along at once. With yesterdays bird at Lytchett Fields another was quickly found today on the Brownsea Lagoon which although seen twice, unfortunately didn’t show for the crowds. There were also 2 Spoonbill on the lagoon and 6 Spotted Redshank. At Lytchett Fields there were 300 Black-tailed Godwit, 22 Dunlin, 4 Common Sandpiper, 4 Green Sandpiper and 2 Bearded Tit. In Holes Bay there were 215 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Common Sandpiper, 4 Redshank and 4 Yellow-legged Gull.

Dunlin - Lytchett Bay - Ian Ballam

Harbour Update - posted 08/08/16

 Whilst it seemed everywhere was getting decent waders apart from Dorset we finally managed to produce some a bit of class when a Little Stint arrived out in Lytchett Bay. This is quite an early record for this species at this site so hopefully more will arrive and stay on the fields over the coming weeks and the Brownsea Lagoon should see some arrive in due course. Also on Lytchett Fields there were a whopping 860 Black-tailed Godwit on the fields including some nice new freshly arrived juveniles plus 11 Greenshank, 2 Common Sandpiper, 10 Common Snipe, 17 Dunlin, 2 Green Sandpiper and the usual Lapwing and Redshank which were then all put up by a Marsh Harrier and Peregrine late afternoon. In the Wareham Channel 2 new adult male Marsh Harrier arrived and played around for a short while. A night recording session from our listening station in Old Town Poole was really productive and produced 2 Green Sandpiper, 6 passing of Dunlin, 1 Whimbrel, 1 Ringed Plover, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Redshank and several Oystercatcher.

In Christchurch a White Stork and Great White Egret arrived early evening on Cowards Marsh so its well worth keeping your eye’s to the sky looking out for species like Storks, Osprey and other birds of prey as august progresses and eventually gives way to September. 

 Dunlin - Calls of a night time migrant - Old town Poole 08/08/16

Ringed Plover - Calls of a night time migrant - Old town Poole 08/08/16

Black-tailed Godwits - Lytchett Fields - Ian Ballam

Harbour Update - posted 07/08/16

Today saw Arne host its second ever Hen Harrier Day, a demonstration that saw around 300 people rally together and voice their anger at the illegal persecution of Hen Harriers and other raptors on the hills of northern England and in Scotland. Birds of prey are killed in these areas to protect the grouse that rich folk then come and shoot. This year in England only THREE pairs of Hen Harrier bred…there is enough suitable habitat to maintain 320+ pairs. Speakers included us (Birds of Poole Harbour), Mark Thomas from the RSPB investigations team, Nick Bruce-Write the RSPB SW regional director and TV presenter and naturalist Lolo Williams. Each speaker spoke with passion and heart about different aspects of their work that sees them combat this issue. There is currently a petition to Ban Driven Grouse Shooting, the supposed main cause of raptor decline across the UK. If you want to see this illegal activity stopped you may like to sign the petition HERE.

Bird news, at Swineham the first 3 Lesser Whitethroat of the autumn were seen is scrub around the pits with a Spotted Flycatcher, 7 Willow Warbler, plenty of Chiffchaff, 1 Hobby, 1 Marsh Harrier, 2 Cetti’s Warbler and a Stonechat. At Lytchett Fields there were 28 Dunlin, the first 3 Ringed Plover of the autumn, a Marsh Harrier passed over and 500+ Black-tailed Godwit. At Middlebere a winter plumage Grey Plover was in front of the hide with 2 Yellow-legged Gull and the Barn Owl passed early evening and a Redstart was along the track. On Upton Heath a Spotted Flycatcher was near the Old Railway. At Slepe Heath a Hobby was hunting over the ridge. 

Hen Harrier Day at Arne


Harbour Update - posted 06/08/16

Another Osprey made its way towards the harbour mid afternoon as it approached from Stoborough direction. At Holton Heath 2 Spotted Flycatcher were feeding on the edge of the wood. On Brownsea 3 Spotted Redshank remained with 1 Knot, 8 Ringed Plover and good numbers of Dunlin and Redshank. At Middlebere a Barn Owl has been active again near the hide and a juvenile Cuckoo was along the approach track to Middlebere Farm. 

Harbour Update - posted 05/08/16

Another busy day with a good range of species encountered. On the Brownsea Lagoon totals included 297 Oystercatcher, 16 Ringed Plover, 1 Turnstone, 1 Sanderling, 152 Dunlin, 2 Knot, 2 Common Sandpiper, 5 Spotted Redshank, 14 Greenshank, 188 Redshank, 14 Curlew 16 Avocet, 1 Yellow-legged Gull, 8 Med Gull and 3-4 Firecrest near the Mac Hide entrance. At Lytchett Heath 10+ Bearded Tit were in the reedbed along with 2 Grasshopper Warbler, 1 Garden Warbler, 20+ Willow Warbler and 5+ Chiffchaff were in the scrub around the fringes of the heath. Out on Lytchett Fields 22 Green Sandpiper were recorded with 4 Common Sandpiper, 14 Dunlin, 1 Whimbrel and 8 Greenshank. A night sound recording session from our listening station in Old Town Poole produced 5 Dunlin, 4 Ringed Plover and 1 Water Rail.

Bearded Tit - Lytchett Heath

Knot - Brownsea Lagoon via webcam

Harbour Update - posted 04/08/16

Again Brownsea held some nice birds as the Black Tern remained moving from one resting spot to another for most of the day. 2 Knot, 2 Spotted Redshank and the Ruff were all viewable from the lower hide on the lagoon too. At Lytchett Fields a Yellow Wagtail passed over and an early male Merlin dashed through with other falcons including a Hobby and a Peregrine passing over too also 17 Green Sandpiper, 53 Lapwing, 8 Greenshank, 17 Dunlin, 668 Black-tailed Godwit and the usual Redshank, Black-headed Gulls. At Arne a Marsh Tit has been visiting the feeders for the last few days, which is nowadays quite a rare occurrence! 

Harbour Update - posted 03/08/16

The Brownsea Lagoon catered for nice range of species today which were all at some point over the course of the day viewable on our Lagoon Webcam. The Black Tern was settled on ‘The Boomerang’ sand bar in the center of the lagoon for part of the afternoon. Down in front of the lower hide 2 Knot, 1 Ruff and 1 Curlew Sandpiper were feeding and roosting with 20+ Redshank, 30+ Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Greenshank and 2 Spotted Redshank. In Holes Bay there were 3 Garden Warbler again in scrub and at the Twin Sails Bridge the Wheatear was present again. At Lytchett Fields 500+ Black-tailed Godwit, 15 Common Sandpiper, 4 Common Sandpiper, 12 Dunlin, 7 Greenshank, 1 Marsh Harrier, 8 Sedge Warbler and 10+ Willow Warbler were noted. At Hamworthy Park 8 Turnstone were on the Pier and 14 Swift passed overhead. 

Curlew Sandpiper - Screen grab from Brownsea Lagoon webcam

Black Tern - Screen grab from Brownsea Lagoon webcam

Harbour Update - posted 02/08/16

These constant SW winds aren’t doing us any favors in terms of bringing migrating birds in off the continent with no species like Wood Sandpiper recorded in the harbour yet so far. However our first Osprey of the autumn passed over Sandford mid afternoon heading towards the harbour so keep an eye out around the Wareham Channel area. The Black Tern was again on the Brownsea Lagoon moving about with Common Tern group and 2 Spotted Redshank, 1 Avocet, 2 Ringed Plover, 1 Turnstone, 3 Greenshank and 2 Knot were also on the lagoon. A co-ordinated count at Lytchett Fields for Green Sandpiper hit 20 which is a new site record and a Knot was also on site with 4 Common Sandpiper, 9 Greenshank, 10 Dunlin and 536 Black-tailed Godwit. In scrub at Holes Bay north a Garden Warbler and 4 Willow Warbler were feeding with 5+ Blackcap.

Green Sandpiper - Lytchett Fields - Ian Ballam

Harbour Update - posted 01/08/16

There was a nice little run of autumn migrants this morning with 3 Garden Warbler, 5 Blackcap, 3 Willow Warbler and a Common Sandpiper in Holes Bay north. At the Twin Sails bridge the first Wheatear of the autumn was playing on the road. Night recording last night from our Old Town Poole Listening station revealed 2 Common Sandpiper, 1 Dunlin, 1 Ringed Plover and a Redshank. From Hamworthy Park 7 Turnstone were back on the Old Pier at the western end, 20+ Swift passed overhead and plenty of Common and Sandwich Tern feeding out in central harbour. At Lytchett Fields there were still high numbers of Black-tailed Godwit with around 500 on Sherford Pools along with 9 Greenshank, 9 Snipe, 8 Green Sandpiper, 11 Dunlin and 1 Common Sandpiper.

Wheatear - Twin Sails Bridge, Poole

Garden Warbler covered in Blackberry juice! - Poole Harbour north

Autumn juvenile Willow Warbler (Top) and Chiffchaff (Bottom)



Harbour Update - posted 31/07/16

There was a really nice mix of birds today including the first Black Tern of the autumn which went past Pilots Point, Studland and in through the harbour mouth with 2 Whimbrel in Brands Bay and several Willow Warbler in that general area too. From Coombe Heath, Arne there was a single Spoonbill in the Middlebere channel with 3 Avocet, while on Brownsea there were a further 7 Avocet and 4 Spotted Redshank. At Lytchett Fields a Common Sandpiper was ringed along with 9 Sedge Warbler and 10 Reed Warbler and on Lytchett Fields 617 Black-tailed Godwit 3 Little Ringed Plover, 18 Dunlin, 10+ Common Sandpiper, 4+ Greenshank, 5+ Green Sandpiper, 6 Snipe and loads of Redshank and Lapwing. At Swineham there were 2 Common Sandpiper, 4 Willow Warbler, 3 Sedge Warbler, 3 Cetti’s Warbler, 3 Reed Warbler and 6 Reed Bunting. A night sound recording session from our listening station in Old Town Poole produced 2 Common Sandpiper, 1 Redshank, 1 Ringed Plover, 1 Dunlin and plenty of calling Oystercatcher

Common Sandpiper - Lytchett Bay - Shaun Robson


Willow Warbler - Holton Heath

Web Design by Beetleweb