Harbour Update – posted 08/10/17

Correct us if we’re wrong, but we were under the impression that as autumn progressed the weather was supposed to deteriorate? Today was beyond a nice autumnal experience and had re-winded back to a full-blown summers day. This made a survey we were carrying out around the harbour even more pleasant with not only great weather but great birds too. Throughout the year we try and survey as much of the harbour as possible by exploring hard to reach areas, such as the Wareham Channel and river valley’s normally from a Brownsea Island Ferry. This allows us to learn and discuss new ideas about how birds use the harbour, when they arrive and count the numbers of birds that are currently within the harbour its self. We finished on a respectable 84 species with highlights including 3 Marsh Harrier in the mouth of the Frome, a minimum of 60 Great Crested Grebe indicating a big arrival within the last few days along with a Black-necked Grebe near Redhorn Quay. We also believe we reached a new Poole Harbour Spoonbill record with 65 present, split between Arne, Brownsea and Lytchett Fields but this is yet to be clarified. A ringtail Hen Harrier drifted over Arne and 2-3 Peregrine were noted over various locations with other raptors including a Merlin over Ower Bay, 2 Sparrowhawk and 1 Kestrel. On Arne Moors 2 Ruff lifted off with c50 Black-tailed Godwit and 2 Yellow-legged Gull were also day roosting. There were still only 2 Red-breasted Merganser back and a single Common Scoter was in central harbour. On the rocks of the marina wall at Poole Quay c10 Ringed Plover, 2 Dunlin, 1 Wheatear and 1 Kingfisher were present. The Brownsea Lagoon was busy with 2 Curlew Sandpiper the highlights, also Grey Plover, 300+ Avocet, 200+ Black-tailed Godwit, 17 Spotted Redshank and 10+ Greenshank. A Great White Egret flew over Holes Bay around 9am and another was in Brands Bay at the same time proving there are currently 2 around.  The Stilt Sandpiper was in Middlebere again late afternoon, still hobbling around sadly on its one leg. There were Ring Ouzel on Ballard and Stoborough Heath. At Lytchett Fields there were 4 Ruff, 1 Little Stint, 1 Curlew Sandpiper and 5 Green Sandpiper and in other areas of Lytchett Bay there were 6 Bearded Tit along footpath 12 with 8 others and a colour-ringed bird caught during an evening Pied Wagtail roost ringing session where 25 Pied Wagtail were also ringed. Cetti’s Warbler were pretty vocal and you can’t blame them considering how warm it was with a minimum of 10 heard along the Frome Valley and 3-5 around Lytchett Bay. At Swineham a Firecrest was in North Bestwall Wood with a Reed Warbler and 2 Blackcap in a mixed-tit flock. 

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