Harbour Update – posted 02/09/20

Today an interesting and exciting development occurred when looking back at a bird that was seen in Lytchett Bay on Aug 25th. On a warm August day, local birder Rene Goad photographed what initially looked like a Peregrine Falcon flying over Lytchett Bay. Happy with his photo, he then posted it on Twitter which is where we first became aware of the sighting. Looking at the photo, it certainly showed a falcon but a few things didn’t quite add up. The bird was an over-all dark and ‘dirty’ plumage and the structure didn’t look right for Peregrine as it seemed too slender in the wing and too long tailed. Anyway, we asked Rene if any more photos were available but sadly there weren’t any more. A few days passed and the image was puzzling and frustrating us so took another look yesterday when a few thoughts started running through our head. Was this a hybrid of different falcon species or was it, with it’s dark plumage, bill shape and colour, body shape and wing shape potentially an Eleanora’s Falcon? If it was to be the latter this would be a first not only for Poole Harbour but also a first for Dorset! We’ve sent the photo to several people and at the moment there’s still debate on the confirmed ID, but there’s strong potential this could be an Eleanora’s Falcon which would certainly be one of the finds of the year!! We’ll keep you posted with any updates.

Around the harbour it was once again an Osprey day with 3 more together over Lytchett Fields and 3-4 around the Middlebere area. New arrivals today also involved 4 juvenile Curlew Sandpiper at Lytchett fields along with 1 Wood Sandpiper, 1 Spotted Redshank, 2 Knot, 3 Ruff, 8 Greenshank, 20+ Redshank, 5 Green Sandpiper and 1 Marsh Harrier. Close by at Lytchett Heath 4 Grasshopper Warbler were caught and ringed. At the PCW Drain there was 1 Spotted Flycatcher and 1 Kingfisher. There was a decent increase of Spoonbill on Brownsea with 27, along with 8 Sanderling and 31 Avocet.

The falcon in question! – Lytchett Bay – Rene Goad (Aug 25th)

             Spotted Flycatcher – PCW Drain, Holes Bay

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