Sightings for September 2002


September 30th

A Pectoral Sandpiper spent a short time in the harbour today. The bird was seen to arrive over Hengistbury in the company of 2 Grey Plover and left an hour or so later with 3 Dunlin. Other birds of note on the head were a flyover Tree Sparrow that appeared to descend into Wick Fields and a Firecrest in the Nursery. A 2 hour visible migration watch totalled an easterly movement of 2000 Swallow, 600 Meadow Pipit, 300 Goldfinch, 120 alba Wagtail, 120 Greenfinch, a very early 50 Chaffinch, 35 Reed Bunting, 11 Grey Wagtail, 11 Jackdaw and 7 Rook; 20 Reed Bunting also headed south. The thrushes meanwhile were moving west with 30 Blackbird and 12 Song Thrush recorded. Grounded birds included 50 each of Chiffchaff and Goldcrest, as well as a few Blackcap. Some late terns were of interest today, a group of 12 Sandwich Tern were on Mudeford sandbar at lunchtime and a Little Tern was feeding in the harbour during the afternoon. On Stanpit, Wigeon and Brent Goose numbers were similar to yesterday but 2 Shoveler were new birds. Both species of Godwit, 3 Curlew Sandpiper, 3 Knot, 1 Greenshank and 1 Common Sandpiper were the best of today's waders.


September 29th

The south-easterly wind certainly tempted birds to move today. During the first 3 hours of daylight well over 1000 Swallows passed over one point on Hengistbury, however, the movement was on a broad front and the total number of birds through the harbour must have been significantly greater. Other visible migrants included 150 Meadow Pipit, 28 Goldfinch, 29 Linnet, 23 Pied Wagtail and 5 Grey Wagtail. Chiffchaff and Goldcrest were present in all suitable areas on the head, a Willow Warbler was in the Barn Field and a Merlin was seen attempting to catch one of the passing Meadow Pipits. Today was the first Wetland Bird Survey (WeBS) count of the season and numbers recorded in the harbour were 353 Wigeon, 133 Dunlin, 79 Teal, 25 Ringed Plover, 23 Brent Goose, 21 Little Egret, 14 Black-tailed Godwit, 5 Bar-tailed Godwit, 3 Pintail, 3 Water Rail, 2 Grey Plover, 2 Kingfisher and 1 each of Sanderling, Curlew Sandpiper and Common Sandpiper. The injured, 3rd winter Yellow-legged Gull is remaining faithful to East Marsh.


September 28th

A charter boat trip to 6 miles offshore from Mudeford Quay didn't produce the hoped for seabirds, but a surprise bonus was 2 Avocet on the sandbar at 7:00am. A Kingfisher was also seen flying around the Run. While at sea, Meadow Pipit, alba Wagtail and Swallow were all noted moving south, and small skeins of Brent Goose were apparent, also seen were 4 Common Scoter heading west. As the boat arrived back at 11:00, there were at least 50 Ringed Plover, 4 Sanderling and 4 Sandwich Tern on the sandbar. On Hengistbury this morning the expected common migrants were recorded in small numbers and just 150 Swallow passed over, as well as single Yellow and Grey Wagtail. On Stanpit this afternoon, there were 373 Wigeon, 112 Dunlin, 21 Bar-tailed Godwit, 13 Knot, 10 Black-tailed Godwit, 6 Greenshank and 1 Grey Plover. 13 Brent Goose were in the harbour and 6 Shelduck are some of the first returning birds after their trip to northern Germany to moult. As usual, the Yellow-legged Gull was present, and passerines on Stanpit included several Chiffchaff and Goldcrest, 1 Redstart, 1 Whinchat and at least 1 Dartford Warbler. A Kingfisher was seen in the regular spot on Purewell Stream, and a Pheasant was in the same area, something of a rarity for the site.


September 27th

Not much to report today. This morning there were 50 or so Chiffchaff dotted around the head, along with 20 Goldcrest, 6 Blackcap, 2 Jay and 2 Wheatear; but there were an incredible 360 Mallard in Barn Bight. A brief lunchtime inspection from Fisherman's Bank provided only 3 Bar-tailed Godwit and 1 Greenshank. Hirundine numbers were very low, with only 12 Swallow being seen this morning.


September 26th

A Tawny Owl was heard from the the old council depot entrance as it called around Stanpit village at 1:45 this morning. The bird was then seen as it flew at roof top level along the Stanpit road towards the Recreation Ground car park. A wader count on Stanpit in the mid-morning yielded 120 Dunlin, 13 Knot, 8 Bar-tailed Godwit and 6 Black-tailed Godwit. A Spotted Redshank was heard arriving then seen landing on East Marsh. Off Fisherman's Bank were 5 Greenshank, 2 Grey Wagtail, 1 Common Sandpiper and 1 Kingfisher, while another was in the Priory Marsh area. The 3rd winter Yellow-legged Gull continues to be present, and 1 Wheatear and 1 Whitethroat were also seen. An evening visit to Stanpit failed to improve wader numbers, but 1 Whinchat and 1 Dartford Warbler were on Crouch Hill and, of course, the Yellow-legged Gull was again seen. At dusk there were 44 Ringed Plover and 4 Sanderling on Mudeford sandbar.


September 25th

The bird of the day was a Golden Oriole heard over the North Scrubs at about 8:30 this morning. Birds around Hengistbury were fairly typical for this time of year with 27 Pintail, 16 Wigeon and 3 Gadwall moving west, and 1000 Swallows, 500 House Martin, 150 Meadow Pipit, 100 alba Wagtail, 100 Goldfinch and 5 Grey Wagtail going east. On the ground were 100 Chiffchaff and 65 Goldcrest with a particular concentration of 50 and 30 respectively around the Ironstone Quarry; also 35 Blackcap, 4 Jay, 1 Sedge Warbler and a Great-spotted Woodpecker. Settled in Barn Bight were 2 Pintail and 1 Shoveler, and the regular Kingfisher was seen there. The Brent Goose gaggle on Stanpit has again increased to 7 birds. Passerines on Stanpit included a Spotted Flycatcher, Lesser Whitethroat and Yellow Wagtail.


September 24th

A quiet day, the cold north-easterly wind seemed to prevent birds from moving. Early morning on Hengistbury produced just 20 Chiffchaff, 13 Goldfinch, 2 Jay, 1 Yellow Wagtail and 1 Mistle Thrush. Only a handful of Swallow were noted on the move. Early evening waders on Stanpit were counted at 110 Dunlin, 7 Knot, 5 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit and 1 Greenshank heard. The Brent Goose is again alone, two Common Gull were seen and a couple each of Goldcrest and Chiffchaff were in the North Scrubs.


September 23rd

A further increase in the number of Goosander records for the year came when two birds flew into the harbour and appeared to settle over towards East Marsh. With the growing breeding and wintering population in the Avon Valley, this trend seems set to continue. An Osprey with accompanying, mobbing Merlin was seen over the harbour at 12:30. Passerine migrants on Hengistbury this morning included 50 Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcap, 1 Spotted Flycatcher, 1 Lesser Whitethroat, 1 Wheatear and 1 Sedge Warbler; and signalling the onset of autumn was the arrival of 6 Brent Goose to join the already present single bird. Also seen from Hengistbury were Peregrine and Kingfisher. A brief wader check from Fisherman's Bank in the late afternoon showed at least 16 Knot, 7 Greenshank and 4 Curlew Sandpiper, while numbers of Godwit were similar to yesterday.


September 22nd

Grounded migrants today included 12 Wheatear, 3 Whinchat, Reed Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Whitethroat, 19 Blackcap, c50 Chiffchaff and 2 Spotted Flycatcher. Overhead hirundines, pipits and wagtails were still on the move but not in the same numbers - of interest a Scandinavian Rock Pipit was seen on the Common. The Dunlin on Stanpit only numbered around 150; also present were 4 Greenshank, 10 Black-tailed and 6 Bar-tailed Godwit, 3 Curlew Sandpiper and 16 Knot. The Wigeon flock has now reached 320 and there were 5 Pintail, 1 Brent Goose and 2 Great Crested Grebes in the harbour. There were also 2 Yellow-legged Gulls, an adult plus the long staying third year bird. Other species seen today included 2 Jay on Wick Fields, a Kingfisher in Barn Bight, 3 Dartford Warbler on Crouch Hill and a Peregrine over Stanpit.


September 21st

The slightly overcast conditions today produced good visible migration once again involving large numbers of Meadow Pipits, Swallows and House Martins together with a few wagtails and 3 Tree Pipits. Significant numbers of Chiffchaffs ( c150 ) were also grounded together with around 35 Blackcap, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, Wheatear, Whinchat, Goldcrest, Reed Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Garden Warbler and Whitethroat. A Hobby, 2 Kingfisher, Great Crested Grebe and 6 Mistle Thrush were also seen. Over on Stanpit 7 Curlew Sandpiper were seen.


September 20th

Today's cloud cover and early morning drizzle failed to ground large numbers of migrants although there were around 30 Blackcap on the Common. Species seen included 4 Wheatear, 2 Whinchat, 4 Yellow and 10 Grey Wagtail, 2 Tree Pipit, Spotted Flycatcher, Garden, Reed and Sedge Warblers, Chiffchaff and Whitethroat. A Peregrine and 2 Kingfisher were also seen. Overhead the movement of Meadow Pipits picked up with more than 400 being noted in just over an hour - Reed Buntings and a few wagtails were also in evidence. Today also saw another major movement of hirundines involving thousands of Swallows and hundreds of House Martins. The selection of waders on Stanpit includes Knot, Curlew Sandpiper, Black and Bar-tailed Godwits, Greenshank and Turnstone. Pintail, Shoveler and Brent Goose could also still be found amongst the Wigeon flock. There were 4 Sanderling and 10 Sandwich Terns on the Mudeford sandbar this evening.


September 19th

Migrants in the harbour today were 7 Wheatear, Whinchat, half a dozen Yellow Wagtail, c35 Chiffchaff, Whitethroat, Blackcap and Lesser Whitethroat. Overhead Meadow Pipits, Pied Wagtails and a few Siskin were moving through. Yesterday's movement of hirundines continued with another 1500 Swallow noted by 10:00am. A late Swift was seen over the playing field at Stanpit this morning. An immature/female Merlin spent most of the morning on a fence post in Barn Bight and an Osprey drifted south-east through the harbour just after lunch. Waders on Stanpit this afternoon included Greenshank, 6 Bar-tailed and 10 Black-tailed Godwit, 4 Curlew Sandpiper and 13 Knot. There were also 2 immature/3rdyr Yellow-legged Gulls, Limpy and a healthier looking bird. The Wigeon count has now reached 280. Pintail, Shoveler and Brent Goose were also present.


September 18th

Migrants on Hengistbury this morning were 4 Wheatear, Tree Pipit, Yellow and Grey Wagtails, c25 Chiffchaff, Goldcrest and a few Blackcap. Common Buzzard and Hobby were also seen. After yesterday's brief lull hirundines were again on the move with over 1500 Swallow noted by 9:30am. There were 51 Ringed Plover and 3 Sanderling on Mudeford Sandspit, 2 Common Sandpiper near Holloway's Dock and 12 Turnstone flew east past Double Dykes. There are now 2 Jay in the woodland and the albino headed Stonechat is still on the Common. Waders on Stanpit this pm included Greenshank, 6 Bar-tailed and 10 Black-tailed Godwit, 4 Curlew Sandpiper and 10 Knot. The only change amongst the wildfowl was the presence of 2 Pintail.


September 17th

Migrants on Hengistbury this morning were 2 Wheatear, a Whinchat, c40 Chiffchaff, Whitethroat and a few Blackcaps. The Kingfisher was on Barn Bight and Jay and Mistle Thrush were also seen. The harbour still holds around 250 Wigeon, 80 Teal, 3 Brent Geese, a pair of Tufted Duck, 2 Shoveler and 2 Great Crested Grebe. A brief look at Stanpit this evening confirmed that the wader numbers had changed very little with 2 Greenshank, 5 Bar-tailed and 12 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Curlew Sandpiper and 17 Knot amongst the more common Dunlin, Redshank Curlew and Ringed Plover.


September 16th

Migration had slowed to a trickle this morning although Swallows were still pouring through. The few common migrants noted were 2 Wheatear, 3 Whinchat, Grey and Yellow Wagtails, Whitethroat, Sedge Warbler and a few Chiffchaff. On Stanpit although the Avocet had moved on there was still plenty to see with 2 Greenshank, 8 Bar-tailed and 4 Black-tailed Godwit, 4 Curlew Sandpiper, 19 Knot and a single Turnstone. The harbour still holds around 250 Wigeon, 80 Teal and a couple of Shoveler together with the Great Crested Grebe. This evening the female Garganey was on Priory Pools and North Scrubs held a few Blackcaps and Willow Warblers.


September 15th

This morning's extensive cloud cover produced less than one would expect - just 8 Wheatear, 2 Whinchat, 13 Grey and 18 Yellow Wagtail, Tree Pipit, Blackcap, Whitethroat, Sedge Warbler, Goldcrest and a few Chiffchaff. Hirundines were still on the move but in much smaller numbers with 200 Swallows, 50 House Martins and a similar number of Sand Martins. Amongst the more common waders on Stanpit were a single Avocet, 4 Curlew Sandpiper, 14 Knot, 2 Sanderling, 8 Bar-tailed and 2 Black-tailed Godwit. The Wigeon count has now reached 254. There was also a Garganey, a female Tufted Duck and 2 Brent Geese together with the Great Crested Grebe. Limpy, the Yellow-legged Gull is still on East Marsh and an adult was also seen on Blackberry. Peregrine, Water Rail, Grey Plover and 2 Kingfisher ( off Fisherman's Bank ) were also noted.


September 14th

Five hundred Swallows were noted this morning before 8am. Other migrants included 2 Wheatears, 13 Grey and 16 Yellow Wagtails, 3 Tree Pipits, Spotted Flycatcher and a few phylloscs - 8 Pintail circled the Harbour and 6 Black-tailed Godwits headed south over Double Dykes. Amongst the more common waders on Stanpit were 2 Curlew Sandpiper, 5 Knot, 1 Greenshank, 10 Bar-tailed and 4 Black-tailed Godwits. The Wigeon count has reached 153 and there were still 2 Shoveler present plus a single Great Crested Grebe. Limpy, the Yellow-legged Gull is still on East Marsh.


September 13th

An orange-billed Tern was seen briefly and in bad light on Mudeford sandbank this morning, the bird unfortunately left before prolonged views could be obtained. Swallows were still on the move, but not in the same numbers as yesterday - an estimated one thousand were noted between 8:30 and 10am. In fact migrants were much scarcer at Hengistbury with just a handful of phylloscs, Redstart, Pied Flycatcher, 6 Wheatears and a few Yellow Wagtails. Incidentally the albino headed Stonechat is still present on the common. There were also 3 Wheatears and a Whinchat on Crouch Hill. Amongst the waders on Stanpit were 5 Snipe, c250 Dunlin, 7 Greenshank, 14 Knot, 10 Bar-tailed and 3 Black-tailed Godwits and 1 Curlew Sandpiper. Wildfowl numbers are steadily increasing with 123 Wigeon, 5 Shoveler, 68 Teal, 2 Pintail, 2 Gadwall and 2 Brent Geese. On the sandspit at Mudeford there were 12 Sandwich Terns, a Turnstone and 8 Sanderling.


September 12th

The six Spoonbills left the harbour and flew south at 8:25am. At Hengistbury in just over two hours this morning an estimated 15-20,000 Swallows were on the move together with c300 House Martins and 200 Sand Martins. Other migrants included 100+ Meadow Pipits, 20 Yellow Wagtails, 16 Whinchats, Sedge Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Blackcap, Whitethroat and c40 phylloscs ( mainly Chiffchaffs ). Six Pintail and 7 Common Terns were also in the Harbour. Amongst the waders on Stanpit this afternoon were 2 Turnstone, 7 Knot, 10 Bar-tailed Godwits, 6 Black-tailed Godwits, 3 Greenshank, 1 Grey Plover and 1 Whimbrel. There were also 62 Wigeon, 1 Shoveler, the Brent Goose and a Great Crested Grebe. In North Scrubs this evening there was a Turtle Dove, Lesser Whitethroat, Garden Warbler and a few Blackcaps. Only 7 Wheatears were seen today. Finally, a Peregrine paid a brief visit to the harbour at dusk.


September 11th

Today's highlight was the arrival of six Spoonbills on Stanpit around lunchtime. The birds which included at least two juveniles could be seen in the high tide roost on East Marsh all afternoon.At Hengistbury this morning migrants included 30 Yellow Wagtails, 4 Tree Pipits, 3 Redstarts, 1 each of Firecrest, Sedge Warbler, Reed Warbler, Garden Warbler, Whitethroat, Blackcap, c50 phylloscs ( mainly Chiffchaffs ) and more than 500 Swallows moved through the Harbour.A wader count on Stanpit produced c30 Ringed Plover, c200 Dunlin, 1 Curlew Sandpiper, 6 Knot, 5 Greenshank, 8 Bar-tailed Godwits, 12 Black-tailed Godwits and 1 Whimbrel. The immature Yellow-legged Gull was still present. There were also 63 Wigeon, 1 Brent Goose and 2 Little Terns in the Harbour. Only 4 Wheatears were seen today and just one Kingfisher .


September 10th

The hoped for major fall didn't occur this morning but there was a scattering of common migrants at Hengistbury including Yellow Wagtail, 3 Wheatear, c15 Sedge Warblers, Reed Warbler, c25 Whitethroat, Blackcap, c50 phylloscs ( mainly Chiffchaffs ), Goldcrest and c15 Reed Buntings on the Common. There was also a large movement of hirundines, mainly Swallows and Sand Martins. Two Kingfishers were seen in Barn Bight.On Stanpit this afternoon the high tide wader count included 112 Oystercatchers, c350 Dunlin, c50 Ringed Plover, 3 Greenshank, 6 Bar-tailed Godwits, 2 Ruff, 10 Knot and 1 Curlew Sandpiper. There was also a Green Sandpiper on East Marsh. Two Yellow-legged Gulls were present - an adult off Fisherman's Bank and the usual immature bird on East Marsh. There were also 32 Wigeon and 15 Sandwich Terns in the harbour .


September 9th

The inclement weather this morning meant that at Hengistbury there were few migrants to be found - around 25 Goldcrests and 20 phylloscs in the woodland plus 6 Grey Wagtails on the beach. Sea watching produced a few Gannets moving east and a few Sandwich Terns offshore. There were also 3 Sanderling on the beach. On Holloway's Dock there was 114 Dunlin and just one Curlew Sandpiper. On Stanpit this morning the wader count included 80 Ringed Plover, 7 Greenshank, 8 Black-tailed Godwits, 6 Bar-tailed Godwits, 2 Knot and 1 Curlew Sandpiper. On Priory Marsh Sedge Warblers were plentiful. Kingfishers were seen on both sides of the harbour.


September 8th

The clear overnight skies tempted the few passerines from yesterday to move on, only a handful of Blackcap, Sedge Warbler and Whitethroat were around the northern fringes of the harbour, and only 4 Wheatear were noted on the whole of Stanpit. 5 or so Yellow Wagtail have been feeding on the marsh for most of the day, mainly following the ponies around, and a Tree Pipit overflew in the early morning. On the early low tide at least 3 Water Rail were on Parky Meade Rail and 17 Teal were settled on Priory Marsh. Waders were watched at Stanpit Bight on both the rising and falling tide today, but not comprehensively counted. As an estimate, Dunlin and Ringed Plover numbers seem similar to yesterday while there are 8 Knot, 7 Bar-tailed Godwit, 5 Black-tailed Godwit, 4 Curlew Sandpiper, 3 Greenshank, 2 Ruff and 1 Whimbrel. Also in that area were 18 Sandwich Tern, 1 Common Gull and the ever present Yellow-legged Gull. At least 3 Kingfisher seen today, 2 fishing on the river along Wick Reeds and 1 around Mother Siller's Channel, then later in the day around East Marsh.


September 7th

Surprise of today was the re-appearance of the White Stork after it had been presumed to have left on Thursday. The bird was watched for over 20 minutes as it soared high over the Avon Valley before slowly drifting eastwards. The previous day's south-westerly wind put paid to any significant passerine arrival, the exception being Goldcrest which were estimated to be 50 birds spread across the head, also Blackcap at around 25 birds. The rising morning tide pushed some waders off Stanpit and onto Mudeford Sandspit where 61 Dunlin, around 20 Ringed Plover, 12 Sanderling, 2 Curlew Sandpiper, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit and 1 Turnstone were feeding amongst the freshly washed up seaweed. Other migrants at Hengistbury were 25 Yellow Wagtail, 16 of which had roosted overnight in Wick Hams, 25 Wheatear, 3 Grey Wagtail and 1 Tree Pipit. Around 25 Sandwich Tern and 15 Common Tern passed west, while 6 birds of the latter species headed east. Also seen on Hengistbury were 2 Kingfisher, 1 Greenshank and 1 Water Rail. 2 Ruff, 2 Whinchat and 17 Teal were on Priory Marsh during the morning. The tide fell mid-afternoon and a wader count was made at Stanpit, the total being 220 Dunlin, 40+ Ringed Plover, 6 Knot, 5 Curlew Sandpiper, 4 Bar-tailed Godwit, 3 Black-tailed Godwit and 1 Greenshank. The third winter Yellow-legged Gull continues to be present and the Wigeon bunch numbered 32 birds. Up to 50 Yellow Wagtail were gathering to roost around Priory Marsh at dusk.


September 6th

The harbour was very quiet today. The strong south-westerlies meant that passerines were few and far between. Early am just 20 phylloscs and 2 Blackcaps were found. There was also an elusive Pied Flycatcher in the woodland adjacent to the Nursery. The usual Kingfisher was seen in Barn Bight mid morning. There were 11 Sanderlings on the beach and 2 Wheatears on the groynes. Sea watching produced just 2 Balearic Shearwaters, 2 Fulmars and a few Gannets. 1, possibly 2, Nightjar were seen at dusk on Hengistbury, initially by the Ironstone Quarry then down by Holloway's Dock. This evening the information services reported a juvenile Spotted Crake on Priory Pools.


September 5th

The 3rd new harbour bird this year was seen today. The expected White Stork ( Photos ) that has spent 3 days just north of the harbour left high south at 10:50am. It was initially seen over Stanpit village, then Mudeford Quay heading east, but turned to gain height over Barn Bight before disappearing into cloud. This is species 314 for Christchurch Harbour and its behaviour today certainly adds weight to it being a true vagrant. 1 Spotted Crake was seen on Priory Pool around 8:30am, but was not seen subsequently, also 2 Yellow and 3 Grey Wagtail, and 1 Wood and 1 Green Sandpiper went over. A Little Stint and 11 Sanderling were on Mudeford sandspit. 4 Crossbill and 1 Tree Pipit overflew Hengistbury and 5 Whinchat and 4 Wheatear were on the ground there. There was another movement of hirundines today with around 1500 Swallow travelling south-east. In Smithy's Field 23 Blackcap, 6 Garden Warbler and 2 Redstart were around, and 16 Wheatear were spread across Stanpit. Similar numbers to yesterday of Dunlin and Ringed Plover were on Stanpit Bight, along with 10 Knot, 6 Bar-tailed Godwit, 3 Black-tailed Godwit and 2 Curlew Sandpiper, while 22 Bar-tailed Godwit headed west without stopping. The regulars are still present, with both the 3rd winter, limping Yellow-legged Gull and the Brent Goose being seen. The information services reported a juvenile Spotted Crake at 1:00pm on Priory Pool.


September 4th

A total of 3 Spotted Crake were in the harbour today, an adult and juvenile have been present on Priory Pool throughout the day and another bird was close to the HHC at dawn. Good numbers of birds were seen from Hengistbury during the morning. An Osprey came over the harbour and headed out to sea at 10:30am, also seen in flight were 2 Avocet. Wildfowl weighed in with 42 Wigeon, 40 Teal, 8 Pintail, 1 Garganey and 1 Shoveler, also 4 Eider which passed east at sea. Passerine migration included 40+ Yellow Wagtail, 15 Grey Wagtail and 8 Tree Pipit overhead, while on the ground 30 Wheatear, 7 Whinchat and 1 Spotted Flycatcher were seen. Other birds noted were 8 Common Sandpiper, 3 Snipe, 1 Hobby, 1 Peregrine and 1 Little Grebe. The partial albino Stonechat is still present on the Common. The Stanpit waders totalled 430 Dunlin, 45 Ringed Plover, 13 Knot, 8 Curlew Sandpiper, 6 Bar-tailed Godwit, 2 Black-tailed Godwit and 2 Greenshank, also around the marsh are 42 Wigeon and the Brent Goose. Over 30 Yellow Wagtail roosted in Wick Reeds this evening and 2 Kingfisher were around the north end of Stanpit.


September 3rd

Some intense northerly skywatching from the harbour late morning produced 1 Honey Buzzard which came over the harbour then headed east, also 1 Osprey which skirted the northern end of Stanpit and 11 Buzzard were noted over the Avon Valley. An adult Spotted Crake was found on Priory Pool along with an influx of at least 5 Water Rail there. 4 Crossbill flew south towards Hengistbury and a Pied Flycatcher was in the North Scrubs. It was very quiet in the morning on Hengistbury, although 15 Siskin passed over and at least 30 Wigeon were seen in the harbour. Off Fisherman's Bank at lunchtime were 8 Knot and 1 Black-tailed Godwit, while a Brent Goose was in Stanpit Bight. A juvenile Spotted Crake was seen on Priory Pool late afternoon, making it 2 birds for the day. There were also 7 Yellow Wagtail among the livestock on Priory Marsh. From Fisherman's Bank this evening 3 Bar-tailed Godwit, 1 Ruff and 1 Greenshank were seen, other waders present but not counted were Curlew Sandpiper, Knot, Dunlin and Ringed Plover. Kingfishers were seen on Parky Meade Rail and at Wick Hams today. The information services reported a Great White Egret from Hengistbury at 5:20pm, local observers arrived shortly afterwards but the bird could not be found.


September 2nd

On Hengistbury there was a scattering of common migrants this morning, including 30 Willow Warbler/Chiffchaff, 15 Reed Warbler, 10 Sedge Warbler, 3 Blackcap, 1 Wheatear and 1 Whinchat. The first significant hirundine movement was noted with an estimated 500 Swallow heading south before 8am, also overhead were 1 Yellow Wagtail and 1 Tree Pipit. 2 Kingfisher were in Barn Bight, 3 Greenshank arrived in the harbour over the Common and a Hobby was seen. A partial albino Stonechat with a pure white head was a new arrival. Late afternoon on Stanpit there were 300 Dunlin, 110 Oystercatcher, 12 Curlew Sandpiper, 9 Knot, 3 Black-tailed Godwit, 3 Snipe and 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, no Ringed Plover count was made. Wigeon numbers increased to at least 19 birds and 2 Yellow-legged Gull were present.


September 1st

The clear overnight skies tempted most passerines to move from Hengistbury and few new arrivals were noted. Sedge Warbler were numbers were much lower, 12 Yellow Wagtail and 1 Tree Pipit went over and 1 Lesser Whitethroat was by the HHC. 3 Pintail flew into the harbour, while a Green Sandpiper and Kingfisher were seen over Wick Hams reedbed. By mid-morning a few day flying migrants had arrived on Hengistbury in the form of 8 Wheatear and 4 Whinchat. During the morning there was another good Knot count on Stanpit with 35 birds seen, also 15 Curlew Sandpiper, 14 Sanderling, 4 Greenshank and 2 Bar-tailed Godwit. Dunlin and Ringed Plover were 400 and 120 respectively. A Hobby was seen from Priory Marsh, and 2 Kingfisher and 1 Green Sandpiper were off Fisherman's Bank. Late afternoon at Stanpit saw another good count, this time 114 Oystercatcher on Blackberry Point, while a herd of 25 Curlew left the harbour in an easterly direction. 2 Shoveler rested up on Stanpit Bight and the third winter Yellow-legged Gull is still being seen.

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