Harbour Update – posted 08/11/14

The strong southerly wind that built up from the early hours looked good for a Branksome sea-watch, and after a combined effort from a handful of people there was a good four hours coverage spent watching from the beach huts. Over this time period a nice range of species were recorded in reasonable numbers, baring in mind this site is most definitely not a Dorset premier sea-watching spot, but can be quite productive in the right conditions. Totals included 4 Pomarine Skua, 1 Arctic Skua, 5 Little Gull, 3 Great Northern Diver, 1 Shearwater sp (likely Balearic), 7 Red-breasted Merganser, 18 Brent Geese, 11 Common Scoter, 5 Dunlin, 5 Shelduck, 2 Razorbill, 5 Auk sp, 11 Gannet, large numbers of Kittiwake, 2 Oystercatcher and 2 Curlew.  Out on Baiter there were 2 Sandwich Tern and 65 Brent Geese. At Arne, the Firecrest were active in the car park with at least 2 present, along with a Marsh Tit (rare here now) and a Brambling. Out in Studland Bay just 1 Common Scoter, 2 Black-necked Grebe, 4 Great Crested Grebe, 6 Med Gulls, and a few Brent Geese. Out in Brands Bay 1 Great White Egret, 5 Goldeneye, 2 Red-breasted Merganser, 2 Sandwich Tern, a late Swallow, 3 Pintail, 10 Black-necked Grebe and 13 Great Crested Grebe.

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