Harbour Update – posted 04/11/22

This morning was shaping up nicely to be a Wood Pigeon morning, and in a way it was, but just without the intensity of previous years. The duration of the migration is what was spectacular about this mornings movement, with passage often drying up by 10:30am. However, today long lines of Wood Pigeon continued to arrive in high over Poole Harbour airspace, from the east, over Sandbanks, over Brownsea and then out over Nine Barrow Down. In total, our 7am – 1pm watch logged 29,989 Wood Pigeon, far short of the Dorset record count of 140k+ in November 2010. But hey, it was still great to watch and experience and a whole range of other species were logged. The count was carried out from near the Sea View viewpoint in North Poole, looking out south across the harbour where 3 Hawfinch, 1 Brambling, 129 Redwing, 27 Skylark, 52 Siskin, 7 Fieldfare, 1 Golden Plover, 5 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 9 different Sparrowhawk sightings and 3 different Peregrine sightings were also logged, as well as smaller totals of other passage migrants such as Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Pied Wagtails and Greenfinch. Also logged was what we think is a Poole Harbour record count of 928 Cormorant which moved across the harbour at dawn from the Wareham Channel area towards Whitley Lake, Sandbanks. Migration was evident elsewhere around the harbour with another Hawfinch logged over Stoborough with 2 Woodlark, 2 Brambling, 163 Redwing, 48 Fieldfare, 1 Red Kite, 1 Marsh Harrier and 1 White-tailed Eagle also counted. At Lytchett fields another Golden Plover went over and a Marsh Tit was in Chads Copse, Lytchett Bay next to Lytchett Bay viewpoint. A Water Pipit was also right in front of the new screen at Rock Lea view. Off the Sandbanks Quay and north Haven there was a single Red-throated Diver and 2 Black-necked Grebe in Shell Bay. There were 2 White-tailed Eagles over Middlebere including 4 year old G318, a female we hope sticks around as she’ll soon be thinking about potential breeding sites and mates! There was also 1 Curlew Sandpiper at Lytchett Fields and a minimum of 50 Spoonbill on the Brownsea Lagoon. A vis-mig session at South Haven, Studland produced 1 late Swallow, 5 Brambling, 18 Lesser Redpoll and 120 Chaffinch. 

Wood Pigeons Migrating over Poole Harbour

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