Harbour Update – posted 23/11/16

On Shipstal the whole Poole Harbour Spoonbill flock of 34 were gathered and a Great Northern Diver was off Shipstal Beach. 4 of the Spoonbill were in Middlebere mid-morning and a male Merlin put on a good show. Off Hamworthy Beach there was a single Great Northern Diver. From Slepe Heath, looking out across the Moors, 7 Marsh Harrier criss-crossed over the flooded meadows where Wigeon, Pintail and Gadwall were all feeding, all three of which are rare occurrences out on Arne Moors. Off Middle Beach, Studland 9 Black-necked Grebe were feeding and another Great Northern Diver was off Jerry’s Point. The Frome and Piddle River Valley’s were extremely flooded playing host to good numbers of Mute Swan but no Bewick’s as far as we could see. The flood meadows between Holmebridge and the Wareham bypass used to be a strong hold for Bewick’s Swan back in the 80’s with between 20-40 often present, however today they are a much rarer and only visit the valley every once in a while but its but if lots of Mutes are visible its well worth checking through them for a yellow bill hiding in amongst them. Talking of flooding, the marsh between Wareham and Stoborough was also knee-deep which played host to c1500 Black-tailed Godwit, 300 Lapwing, 6 Snipe, 150 Curlew, 1 Water Pipit and 2 Stonechat.

Pintail – Upton CP – Ian Ballam

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