Harbour Update – posted 22/01/17

Wow, what a run of great weather we’re experiencing at the moment. If there was ever a day to be out then today would have been it. Vigils from Slepe Heath saw a Hen Harrier, 4 Marsh Harrier and a Bittern out over Arne moors and the Piddle Valley. At Lytchett Bay/Fields there were singles of Jack Snipe, Spotted Redshank, Green Sandpiper and the Lesser Yellowlegs was out in the bay. At Swineham there were 2 Jack Snipe off the point, 1 Marsh Harrier and up to 16 Bearded Tit in the reedbeds. At Norden Sewage Works the Siberian Chiffchaff was again on the filter beds with 15 Common Chiffchaff and a Firecrest was in the near by park and ride car park. Over Arne Moors, viewed from Slepe Heath a ringtail Hen Harrier and a Marsh Harrier were seen near dusk. Our first proper Woodcock ringing session of 2017 saw c20 birds present at our site near Hartland Moor but only 3 were caught and ringed. The redhead Smew is still in Holes Bay SE and there were 13 Spoonbill on Shipstal Point, Arne. The Starling murmurations at Studland attracted a crowd of up to 300+ people. Interestingly, this is a historic Starling roosting site with totals varying year on year. Thanks to Phyl England for her photo of a murmuration that took place during the winter period of 2006/07. At Arne up to 10 Firecrest have been reported around the reserve. Out in Ower Bay the 14 Barnacle Geese still seem to be happy hanging out with the Canada Geese.

Historical Starling murmuration FEB 2007 at Shell Bay, Studland – Phyl England

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