Harbour Update – posted 24/07/17

It was another good day for birds today with a bit of an autumn/winter vibe. The first returning Wigeon of the autumn popped up in Lytchett Bay early morning, which is a pretty early date. Normally we’d expect the first to return around mid to late August, so whether this bird has really returned from the far north of Europe or from somewhere a bit closer to home we’ll never know. Continuing with the wintery theme a raft of 8 Common Scoter were out in central harbour with 2 males and 6 females bobbing along off Arne. 5 Spoonbill were roosting up on the Keysworth shoreline on the high tide, which may explain why they’ve gone missing from Brownsea recently and over Swineham a Hobby was hunting over recently cut hay fields. This could be one of the pair from Arne or one a pair from further up the Frome Valley. There were some signs of passerine passage this morning with 1 Garden Warbler, 3 Willow Warbler, 1 Reed Warbler, several Chiffchaff and 4 Blackcap ringed at Fleets Corner in Poole Harbour north. Lytchett Fields was busy again with Green Sandpiper with 21 counted along with 1 Little Ringed Plover, 1 Common Sandpiper, 1 Common Snipe and 9 Dunlin out on the fields. Out over the Wareham Channel 2 Osprey were circling together in the wind before drifting off towards Arne with 2 Marsh Harrier seen in and around the mouth of the river Frome, near Swineham. Along the Studland Road at the Corfe end a large gathering of c100 Swift were actively feeding.

Garden Warbler – Fleets Corner


Osprey Translocation Update

We now have up to five of the chicks using the perching bars at the front of the pens with LS2 having a bit of a go today too but then promptly flapped and fell off. Not a bad effort, but must try harder! We were testing out the tiny tail mounted tracking tags today too which we’ll be fitting to the birds in the coming days ready for when they’re released. Being able to locate, monitor and track the birds after they’ve been released is essential and these tiny receivers will allow us to know roughly at anyone time which direction each bird is and close they are. They will only allow us to track the birds whilst they’re in the harbour and once they leave we’ll lose signal and the tags will moult out with the feathers in several weeks. We’re also beginning to up the size of fish pieces the birds are getting as each now seems to be using their talons to tear bits of meat to eat, rather than eating the smaller chunks we’ve been providing. The plan is to get them seeing and eating larger pieces now to the point we can just place out whole fish for them to enjoy. They don’t even know how lucky they are! 


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