Harbour Update – posted 11/11/22

It’s been an interesting start to the winter birding scene in the harbour so far this year, with diver activity already reaching higher totals that we saw last winter, no doubt due to the rougher weather conditions we’ve had in the last couple of weeks. With a school bird boat out this morning, as well as a survey boat this afternoon, the harbour was well recorded today, including 4 Great Northern Diver in Brands Bay and Bramble Bush Bay, as well as a single juvenile Great Northern Diver in the Wareham Channel. 3 Red-throated Diver were also seen, 2 from Jerry’s Point and 1 in the Central Harbour. Also from Jerry’s Point, 1 Black-necked Grebe was reported, along with the typically decent numbers of Great Crested Grebe also logged. The lone Eider seen in the last week was recorded again today, picked up in the Central Harbour, closer to Shipstal than previously logged. Conversely to the decent diver numbers we’ve had so far this year, Red-Breasted Merganser have not yet reached their usual numbers, with c.26 logged during the survey boat this afternoon. On the Brownsea Lagoon, 37 Spoonbill we present, along with c.300 Avocet, 500+ Black-tailed Godwit, a single Bar-tailed Godwit and 15 Greenshank. At Swineham a whopping 340 Canada Geese and 70 Greylag Geese were feeding/resting on the scrapes with 8 Egyptian Geese, hopefully making it an attractive ‘carrier flock’ for any wandering scarcer species that may turn up.

The children on the School Bird Boat this morning were treated to views of 1 White-tailed Eagle in flight from Arne Bay, causing lots of excitement. Other raptor activity included at least 4 Marsh Harrier at the top end of the Wareham Channel and 1 Peregrine  seen from Poole Quay. 15+ Fieldfare were also seen moving over Swineham. The Snow Bunting reported yesterday was still present today on Shell Beach, first re-found west of the fenced wader protection area, and later within the fencing.

Snow Bunting – Shell Beach – Nick Hull

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