No let up in the weather over the last 3 days, still a biting cold easterly wind managing to numb almost everyone’s fingers and toes that braved to go outside. That said, a decent number of reports came through so in chronological order, here are the reports and sightings over the last 3 days….

Sunday 24th March saw the last WeBS count of 2012/13, and despite being so late in the month there were still many thousands of waders to be found. Firstly an Osprey was seen flying in over Brands Bay, and 2 summer plumage Golden Plover were at Greenland’s Farm. Wheatear and Chiffchaff were widely reported across the harbour with a max of 20 on Hartland Moor, 22 at Greenland’s Farm and 9 at Sunnyside. There was around 10 Sand Martin over the PC world drain and also 6 Wheatear and a Swallow. Highlights of WeBS (Wetland Bird Surveys) counts from various sites included 102 Black-tailed Godwit, 120 Avocet and 3 Sandwich Tern on Brownsea, 287 Bar-tailed Godwit, 76 Sanderling and 42 Knot at Shore Road, 4 Spotted Redshank, 19 Grey Plover and 19 Brent Geese at Swineham Point, 4 summer plumaged Black-necked Grebe off Jerry’s Point and 350+ Shelduck in Brands Bay. Some other incredible counts included 350 Mediterranean Gulls off Middle Beach, Studland and also a Little Gull there.

Monday 25th was just as cold, however a few Wheatear kept arriving with birds at Lytchett Bay, Upton Heath, Sunnyside Farm and Holes Bay.  Sunnyside also hosted a large thrush flock of around 500 birds mainly consisting of Fieldfare and Redwing, but also plenty of Song Thrush and Mistle Thrush, perhaps a displacement of birds from foul weather further north in the country? Greenland Farm still held 2 summer plumage Golden Plover, 22 Wheatear, 100 Fieldfare and a Firecrest. At Lytchett Bay there were 2 Yellow-legged Gull,  2 Spotted Redshank, 2 Greenshank, a White Wagtail and 2 Wheatear, a summer plumage male Brambling and a Stonechat.

Tuesday 26th started off with a Bittern at Lytchett Bay along with 22 Redwing, a Wheatear and White Wagtail. Brownsea still held good numbers of birds with 150 grey Plover, 35 Knot, 140 Avocet, 11 Sandwich Tern, 35 Bar-tailed Godwit and 10 Turnstone. Finally a ringtail Hen Harrier still present in the Wareham Channel and a Little Gull east along Arne moors. 


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