Double Whammy – posted 24/04/14

This morning the day looked as if it was panning out to be a quiet day in the office, that was until I got a phone call from Nick Hopper stating that local birder Graham Armstrong had found a ‘large pipit’ at Greenlands Farm, Studland. The possibilities of a large pipit could be Tawny, Richards or Blyth’s Pipit; any of the three would be real Poole Harbour MEGA. Pipits are notoriously difficult to ID so time was taken going through all the features, and luckily the bird was calling quite often as it flew from feeding spot to feeding spot. As Graham was watching the bird Steve Smith ( made his way to help with the ID when he just happened to stumble on a Hoopoe feeding in a field not 100m away from where the Pipit was. Stuck in two minds he watched the Hoopoe briefly and called Graham who was still watching the pipit. The Hoopoe was ‘enjoyed’ for a few minuets before the pipit became the main focus again. By this point Graham was happy that the bird was indeed a Richards Pipit, not only exceptionally rare in Poole Harbour, but exceptionally rare anywhere in the country in spring!  The bird was re-found and enjoyed by a small number of birders who made their way to see it. I was lucky enough to see it and sound record the bird which is what you can hear in the recording below. The Pipit is the loud chheeeow you can hear every 2-3 seconds with Linnet calling in the background, and you can even hear Wheatear ‘chacking’ at the very end. Also at Greenlands Farm 50+ Wheatear, 2 Yellow Wagtail, 3 Whitethroat and 2 Stonechat. On Brownsea Lagoon the male Garganey remained and 7 Spoonbill. The 2 Nightingale were again singing at Corfe. At Lytchett Bay 1 Cuckoo, 8 Wheatear, 1 Redstart, 3 Whimbrel, and 1 Greenshank. There were 3 Wheatear at Holes Bay. At South Haven 2 Garden Warbler, 1 Tree Pipit and 2 Whimbrel whilst at Swineham GP a 1st summer Little Gull was present. Finally, it looks as though one of the female Marsh Harriers could be incubating as a food pass was witnessed today with the bird returning straight back down to the nest site. There are still 2 other ‘active’ females so who knows how many will settle in the end?

You can view videos taken today of the Hoopoe also Wheatear and Yellow Wagatil by clicking HERE

 Richards Pipit flight call – Greenlands Farm 24/04/14

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