Select Page
Share this page
Sightings for Month: August 2022

August 31st

Little Egret and Glossy Ibis – Alan Crockard

Kingfisher – Roger Tidball

Curlew – Roger Tidball

Migrant passerines on site this morning included: a Grasshopper Warbler and a Spotted Flycatcher on Hengistbury, plus a Lesser Whitethroat at Stanpit; with 2 Tree Pipit, 6 Yellow Wagtail, 7 Wheatear, 23 Willow Warbler, at least 6 Chiffchaff, 9 Whitethroat and 6 Blackcap being reckoned across the area. Meanwhile, a reasonable variety of waders was made up of singles of Wood Sandpiper, Greenshank, Knot and Sanderling, along with 5 Whimbrel, and uncounted Ringed Plover and Dunlin. An Osprey visited around 9:00, successfully, and another likewise an hour later. Earlier, the Glossy Ibis spent some time in Mother Siller’s Channel after leaving the roost; where 11 Cattle Egret also over-nighted – one heading off immediately, but the others lingering for a while. Winter wildfowl numbers built up to 6 Shoveler, 18 Wigeon and around 20 Teal; and an evening visit to Stanpit produced 2 Water Rail, a Kingfisher and around 70 Swallow, perhaps looking to roost.

August 30th

Juvenile Osprey at Stanpit today – Jackie Smith

This juvenile Osprey, 1H9, which has spent the last few days around Christchurch, was ringed in the nest on 27th June in the Rutland Water area – Roy Dennis Wildlife Foundation

…and surely a really good candidate for leucorhoa (Greenland) Wheatear – as ever, comments very welcome – Jackie Smith

Kicking-off, birds which used to be rare or scarce, only as recently as twenty years ago: the Glossy Ibis and 7 Cattle Egret left the area just after first light; Osprey visited at 13:00 and 15:00; and 2 Buzzard were in the North Scrubs. On the flipside, however, there was late news from yesterday of around 70 Yellow Wagtail roosting about Stanpit – a species that once did so in their hundreds, while the day produced just one Tree Pipit and 2 Swift over. Passerine-wise, the other returns, from across the site, were 2 Spotted Flycatcher, 6 Wheatear, 7 Whitethroat and 8 Willow Warbler. Moving to waders, singles of Greenshank, Grey Plover, Common Sandpiper and Whimbrel were the best, but quite a few, uncounted Ringed Plover and Dunlin about Blackberry Point; with the sea-type birds being headed by a 1cy Common Gull, 3 Common Tern and 25 Sandwich Tern, all inside the harbour. To finish: 9 Shoveler and 13 Wigeon were logged; a Peregrine hunted; and 2 Kingfisher were about – the last few days having seen them fighting over winter territories on Fisherman’s Bank.

August 29th

Adult (upper) and juvenile Sanderling – Matthew Barfield

Juvenile Yellow Wagtail – Matthew Barfield

Starting with waders – the best being a Curlew Sandpiper at Stanpit this afternoon and a Green Sandpiper up from the Salt Hurns during the morning. Also, a total of 7 Sanderling by the Long Groyne and a Little Ringed Plover, a Grey Plover, a Greenshank, 2 Common Sandpiper, 2 Whimbrel, a Black-tailed Godwit, 30 Ringed Plover and around the same number of Dunlin, inside the harbour. Continuing their good run, a Pied Flycatcher was on the Batters; while 2 Redstart, 2 Whinchat, a Lesser Whitethroat, 3 Wheatear and 8 Willow Warbler were settled, with at least 10 Yellow Wagtail, 2 Grey Wagtail, and a trickle of Swallow and Sand Martin over – all mostly returned from Hengistbury. Common Tern numbers dropped off today, just six, but there was the first Common Gull of the impending season and two, first-calendar-year Mediterranean Gull in a state of transition. Before getting to the more regular stuff, a couple of Red Kite were seen from the marsh, where a Shoveler and a juvenile Gadwall were with the 4 Wigeon at times. To finish: the Glossy Ibis remained on North Marsh until at least 11:30; Osprey came at 06:00 and just before 11:00 – both occasions being successful; and an adult male Peregrine was about.

August 28th

Osprey – Leo Pyke

Common Lizard – Alan Crockard

All the day’s Osprey action came in the morning. A juvenile arrived at 09:15 and spent a hapless 30 minutes catching nothing; it was joined by an adult that promptly caught something; with the young bird returning at 11:00, when it toured the area without attempting to get its claws wet. Meanwhile, there was a decent selection of waders on Blackberry Point, viewed from Fisherman’s Bank, which included: a Little Stint, a Knot, 165 Ringed Plover and 55 Dunlin. These were then flushed by a Peregrine and, as a result, a Curlew Sandpiper appeared in Stanpit Creek. Also, seven further Knot, at least one Whimbrel, a Common Sandpiper and 3 Black-tailed Godwit inside the harbour. A Firecrest in the uncharacteristic location of the North Scrubs is a definite indicator these are on the move; with a Wheatear, 8 Willow Warbler, 4 Chiffchaff, 3 Sedge Warbler, 3 Yellow Wagtail and ‘steady pulses’ of Swallow also on their travels. Again, there was a good number of Common Tern on the Flats at low water – perhaps up to 50 birds; a juvenile Mediterranean Gull was logged; 4 Wigeon and 2 Teal were in Stanpit Bight; the Glossy Ibis headed off at 07:35; and the day-total for Kingfisher was two – at the Wooden Bridge and on the Ironstone Quarry.

August 27th

A couple of record shots of this morning’s Pectoral Sandpiper – Jackie Smith

Juvenile Buzzard over Holloway’s Dock – Peter Boardman

Migrant Hawker – Peter Boardman

A Pectoral Sandpiper was briefly on the Crouch Hill scrape around 10:00 this morning, before moving over to East Marsh, calling as it went, where it unfortunately couldn’t be relocated. A little later, a Wood Sandpiper was in Parky Meade Rail, 2 Common Sandpiper were on the scrape and a Greenshank was around. There were two Osprey visits – one just after 11:00, which was little more than a single circuit, and one at just before 16:00, which involved a fish being caught. The rest of the news is from passerines at Stanpit, which included: a Spotted Flycatcher, 9 Willow Warbler, 5 Chiffchaff, 5 Blackcap and a Whitethroat, plus 8 Yellow Wagtail over. Of recent avian interest, Nightjar have been seen around the Solent Meads golf course and Roebury Meadow at about 22:30 for the last two evenings; and, of piscatorial interest, a shoal of Tuna was chasing Mackerel roughly 300m off the Long Groyne this morning.

August 26th

Unfortunately, of the original four, only this Little Grebe chick survives – but it does now look big enough now to have made it through. Quite what predates them on the Ironstone Quarry is a bit of a mystery, however – Peter Boardman

Starting at dawn, when: the Glossy Ibis dropped into Mother Siller’s Channel for a while, before heading to the valley, with 7 Cattle Egret also going that way; and seventy-four of the day’s 81 Yellow Wagtail were logged. There was a nice presence of Common Tern in the harbour throughout – although the only count was of thirty-one in the morning, but anecdotally there may have been more in the afternoon; also at least 15 Sandwich Tern and two juvenile Mediterranean Gull. There was just one Pied Flycatcher today, that in the North Scrubs, as was a Redstart; but there were 2 Spotted Flycatcher on Wick and one on the Riversmeet Meadow embankment. Meanwhile, a Whinchat and 7 Wheatear were around Crouch Hill, and site-wide totals for Willow Warbler, Blackcap and Chiffchaff come to thirty-five, fourteen and four respectively. Sticking with southbound birds, Swallow and Sand Martin trickled through all day. Moving to waders, a flock of 4 Avocet went east over Wick and 3 Whimbrel, plus 10 Black-tailed Godwit – nine of them a flock of juveniles and a singleton, with around the 70-strong mix of Ringed Plover and Dunlin – were in Stanpit Bight.

August 25th

Whinchat on Crouch Hill – Scott Usher

…and one of four Sparrowhawk together over Wick – Peter Boardman

It was a reasonable day for passerines around the place. Grasshopper Warbler were by the skate park at Two Riversmeet and in Ashtree Meadow; two Pied Flycatcher were on Wick and another was very vocal in the North Scrubs; a male and female Redstart were on the Barn Field, with a further bird elsewhere; a Whinchat and 11 Wheatear were on Crouch Hill; and 7 Willow Warbler were returned, but surely there must have been more. Meanwhile, at least 15 Yellow Wagtail passed over. Transient waders contained interest: a Spotted Redshank went over the Salt Hurns with 7 Black-tailed Godwit; a Ruff passed west; and a Wood Sandpiper was around. In addition, 4 Greenshank, 2 Knot, a Common Sandpiper and 5 Black-tailed Godwit checked-in. To finish: a Cattle Egret headed high to the north; a cream-crowned Marsh Harrier hunted Stanpit; 25 Swift moved through; and 2 Kingfisher were about.

August 24th

Painted Lady – Barrie Taylor

Juvenile (left) and two adult Sandwich Tern – Alan Crockard

Pied Flycatcher on Hengistbury were reckoned at five birds today – three of them favouring some stressed birches in the Wood. Also, a male Redstart on Wick, 10 Tree Pipit and a Grey Wagtail over, and 5 Firecrest. The sea was again quiet, but did deliver a Balearic Shearwater, as well as 3 Common Scoter and 8 Shelduck west, the latter in a single flock. The only other bird news is of 2 Avocet and 2 Whimbrel at Stanpit. Off mammal interest, a pod of 4 Bottlenose Dolphin, one of them a calf, was offshore for a while.

August 23rd

Glossy Ibis – Adrian Simmons

A very quiet seawatch was suddenly shaken into life this morning, when a juvenile Sabine’s Gull appeared close-in off the Long Groyne before heading around the end of the head. Otherwise, it was just a Little Ringed Plover, 2 Grey Plover, 2 Knot, 5 Common Tern, 4 Mediterranean Gull and around 15 Gannet. Earlier, around 07:15, the Glossy Ibis spent some time in Mother Siller’s Channel, before heading north, and 2 Wood Sandpiper were seen over Wick. At least two each of Pied Flycatcher, Garden Warbler and Tree Pipit were logged at Hengistbury, as were: a vocal Grasshopper Warbler, 25 Willow Warbler, a Firecrest, a Grey Wagtail and 2 Bullfinch. The Osprey season seems to have opened – a bird again in the airspace, at just before 14:00 – while a Peregrine was hunting Stanpit Creek. To finish, the settled wader news, which is certainly light, a Greenshank and 4 Whimbrel.

August 22nd

Pied Flycatcher – Scott Usher

Lesser Black-backed Gull – Leo Pyke

The day was overcast with occasional drizzle. At Stanpit, an Osprey visited the harbour in late morning; this may well have been a young bird that was seen leaving the Lower Avon Valley a few minutes earlier. A Pied Flycatcher in North Scrubs was probably yesterday’s bird, 4 Cattle Egret perched briefly in Great Spires and 3 Wheatear were on Crouch Hill, while 2 Raven and a Buzzard were also logged. The light southerly wind, which veered from south-east to south-west, encouraged a look at the sea from Hengistbury but, apart from some 70 Gannet fishing aimlessly, there were just 28 Mediterranean Gull – mainly juveniles – and 5 Common Tern heading east, as well as a few, uncounted, Sandwich Tern offshore. Two Tree Pipit and 8 Sand Martin moved overhead, and the now well-grown juvenile Little Grebe remains on the Quarry Pond, where the water level is unsurprisingly very low. Twenty Common Tern and 10 Sandwich Tern were on Blackberry, where the flock of small waders held 40 Ringed Plover, 25 Dunlin and a lone Sanderling. Just 7 Willow Warbler were noted at Hengistbury/Wick, as well as a Firecrest in the Wood and a Bullfinch on Wick.

Of interest: three colour-ringed Redshank have been seen in the harbour this month. All are part of the GWCT Waders forReal Lower Avon Valley project, which is trying to reverse the decline of breeding waders in the Avon Valley. Two were ringed as adults in the Valley in 2021, with one over-wintering in Stanpit, and both returned to the same fields to breed successfully this year. The third bird, ringed as an adult in 2022, also hatched young. Please notify CHOG Sightings of any ringed birds noted in the harbour.

August 21st

Osprey – David Faulkner

Dunlin and Ringed Plover – Alan Crockard

Pied Flycatcher in North Scrubs – Alan Hayden

An overcast morning gave way to a sunny afternoon with a light south-westerly breeze. A Temminck’s Stint at Stanpit provided some early excitement when it flew up from Grimmery calling and headed towards Central Marsh, but unfortunately could not be relocated. This is the first record since 2012. For the second successive day, an Osprey fished successfully and flew off from Stanpit to devour its catch elsewhere. There were a few common migrants settled on both sides of the harbour, with site totals of 4 Pied Flycatcher, a Spotted Flycatcher, a Grasshopper Warbler, 30 Sedge Warbler, 18 Whitethroat and 33 Willow Warbler, while 20 Blackcap were at Wick. Meanwhile, 8 Tree Pipit and 2 Yellow Wagtail flew over and 62 Sand Martin headed south. There was a flock of 200 small waders on the Sandspit, with Ringed Plover outnumbering the Dunlin; most of them probably moved on as the tide dropped, as only 45 and 20 respectively were counted at Stanpit. The Marsh also hosted singles of Knot, Turnstone, Greenshank and Bar-tailed Godwit, as well as 8 Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Whimbrel and 5 Common Sandpiper. Fewer terns were noted today: 28 Sandwich Tern and 20 Common Tern on the exposed mud, with a further 24 of the latter heading west as did 2 Mediterranean Gull. A Buzzard was seen several times and at least 1 Kingfisher was logged.

August 20th

Whinchat – Jackie Smith

Kestrel – Alan Crockard

Breaks soon appeared in the early cloud and the morning was quite warm out of the cool south-westerly breeze. Probably the best record of the day was a Turtle Dove which flew towards Wick having been flushed by a Buzzard from Riversmeet Meadow. Also around the Priory Marsh area were 2 Cattle Egret and singles of Wood Sandpiper, Snipe, Spotted Flycatcher and Whinchat, while 2 Yellow Wagtail and 4 Tree Pipit flew over and the Glossy Ibis spent some time just east of Crouch Hill. Mid-morning, an Osprey circled the Harbour and seemed to catch a fish in the river at its first attempt, as it was seen with one a few minutes later just north of the harbour. The 45 Ringed Plover and 32 Dunlin at Stanpit werejoined by a Little Stint, a Knot, 2 Greenshank, a Black-tailed Godwit, a Turnstone and 9 Whimbrel, six of which left to the west. There was an increase in the number of Common Tern, with an estimated 150 heading west and a further 30 resting inside the harbour. Sandwich Tern were down slightly, with 75 lingering on the exposed mud and a few more moving west. Remaining sightings included a Black Swan, a Peregrine and 5 Raven over the Marsh, a Lesser Whitethroat and 5 Willow Warbler at Wick, plus a further 3 of the latter at Stanpit.

August 19th

Juvenile Common Tern – Scott Usher

Adult Common Tern – Scott Usher

Stonechat – Peter Boardman

Small Heath – Peter Boardman

The day started overcast with some drizzle but brightened by late morning. At Hengistbury, 5 Tree Pipit flew over, two of which dropped into Long Field just after the rain had stopped, and 20 Willow Warbler were logged between the Wood and Wick. Two Wood Sandpipers remain in the area, but the only sighting received today came from Wick Farm Meadows. At Stanpit, a Whinchat and two Blackcap were in North Scrubs, while 2 Wheatear were on Crouch Hill. The flock of Dunlin and Ringed Plover was too distant to count, but other waders included 2 Snipe, 2 Whimbrel and a/the lone Black-tailed Godwit. Approximately 90 Sandwich Tern and 20 Common Tern were on Blackberry, with a further 20 of the latter flying west through the harbour. Two Teal were on Priory Marsh and one, possibly two, adult Common Gull were present. A late afternoon visit added a Knot with the Redshank flock and a Mediterranean Gull. Finally, a Peregrine flew south through the harbour and 2 Kingfisher were in Parky Meade Rail.

August 18th

Pied Flycatcher – Alan Hayden

Wood Sandpiper – Alan Crockard

Spotted Flycatcher – Alan Hayden

Just after dawn, the Crouch Hill scrape hosted the Glossy Ibis, when 7 Tree Pipit passed over Stanpit and a Spotted Flycatcher was present. Later, 2 Pied Flycatcher and 2 Spotted Flycatcher were in the Stunted Oaks on Hengistbury, with 2 Wheatear also on the head and Wick producing a Redstart plus 10 Willow Warbler. A little after midday, a Black Tern was with 8 Common Tern inside the harbour, while the 3 Wood Sandpiper were on Priory Marsh throughout, along with a Green Sandpiper, and calls of the former could be heard at dusk over Two Riversmeet leisure centre. The pick of the waders around Stanpit Bight was a Greenshank, but also a Common Sandpiper, 4 Whimbrel, 4 Black-tailed Godwit, 11 Ringed Plover, 30 Dunlin, 2 Turnstone and 5 Snipe. To wrap things up; 2 Shoveler were about; as were 2 Peregrine, one of them a juvenile; and a Kingfisher was logged.

August 17th

Great Spotted Woodpecker – Alan Crockard

A visit to Hengistbury, just before the afternoon downpour, saw 25 Willow Warbler, including eighteen transiting from the Nursery to the Batters in a 10-minute spell, as well as a Yellow Wagtail and 10 Swallow, plus a few each of Chiffchaff and Whitethroat. After the rain, a Whinchat was on Whitepits and, much earlier, a further 15 Willow Warbler had been on Wick. Also early on, a female-type Marsh Harrier headed north; with 2 Wood Sandpiper on Priory Marsh just ahead of the thunder.

August 16th

The Priory Marsh Wood Sandpiper were a three again today – on the floods adjacent to the Clay Pool. Meanwhile, after the very-welcome rain had a ceased, a Pied Flycatcher and a Spotted Flycatcher were in the Nursery, a Tree Pipit was on the Long Field, an adult male Wheatear was at Whitepits and 4 Willow Warbler were in the North Scrubs. Moving back to waders and there was a little more variety and quantity around Stanpit Bight, including: a Greenshank, 4 Sanderling, 4 Whimbrel, 30 Black-tailed Godwit – one settled, the rest east, 50 Ringed Plover, 40 Dunlin and 3 Turnstone. Sandwich Tern and Common Tern about the area were estimated at seventy and six respectively; 17 Teal were on Priory Marsh, as was a Kingfisher – with another seen over the Run; and a single Peregrine was logged.

August 15th

There is less to report on today – although the Glossy Ibis was on the HHC mudbar early on, along with three of the Cattle Egret. A couple of Green Sandpiper were about – the Wooden Bridge and Stanpit Bight providing those returns – while 7 Knot were in the bight, as well as: a Whimbrel, 9 Black-tailed Godwit, 20 Ringed Plover and 6 Dunlin. Five Common Tern settling on buoys in the centre of the harbour were reported by kayakers and a Buzzard had earlier passed over there. To finish, 20 Teal are estimated to now be around the site.

Omission: 2 Wood Sandpiper remained on Priory Marsh.

August 14th

Common Darter – Peter Boardman

It was today confirmed that 6 Cattle Egret are roosting in the area and then spending the day in the Avon Valley; likewise, a Glossy Ibis. Two of yesterday’s Wood Sandpiper remained on Priory Marsh, while other waders included: 2 Green Sandpiper over, a Little Ringed Plover, an Avocet, 12 Common Sandpiper 3 Whimbrel, a Black-tailed Godwit, 6 Ringed Plover, 5 Dunlin and an in-harbour Turnstone. Transient passerines across the site were reckoned at: a Grasshopper Warbler on Riversmeet Meadow embankment, 3 Lesser Whitethroat, a Whinchat on Crouch Hill, 8 Wheatear, a Whitethroat and 15 Willow Warbler; plus singles of Tree Pipit, Yellow Wagtail and Grey Wagtail over. Rounding up: a couple of Wigeon passed through, with 22 Teal settled; 130 Sandwich Tern and 6 Common Tern were around Stanpit Bight; and Kingfisher were seen in Brewer’s Creek and Mother Siller’s Channel.

August 13th

Glossy Ibis – Scott Usher

Two Cattle Egret and a Little Egret (right) – Scott Usher

Emperor Dragonfly – Peter Boardman

Kingfisher on the Bailey Bridge – two there this morning – Scott Usher

An easterly breeze kept the field temperatures certainly bearable, and there was a good bit of variety to be had. A Garganey was around the waters adjacent to South Marsh for a while; 3 Wood Sandpiper were seen very well on Priory Marsh this afternoon; and a Glossy Ibis and at least 5 Cattle Egret were about the area early on. Juvenile Mediterranean Gull have been passing east in numbers for the last day or two, but there are no actual figures to yet publish – also an adult lingering. Meanwhile, a Little Tern went over Crouch Hill and 5 Common Tern passed through to the west. Sedge Warbler were described as many, with other passerines, all at Stanpit, being reported as: a Whinchat, 3 Wheatear and a Willow Warbler. To wrap up: the only waders logged were 3 Whimbrel, 8 Black-tailed Godwit and 3 Dunlin; up to 10 Water Rail were on show in Parky Meade Rail, when the tide was at its lowest; and 2 Kingfisher were zipping around the Bailey Bridge – currently the best spot on the site to catch-up with one.

August 12th

Juvenile Whinchat – Alan Crockard

What could hopefully become again ‘the’ Glossy Ibis was seen at Stanpit early in the morning, with a Wood Sandpiper over South Marsh. Crouch Hill hosted an impressive 6 Whinchat, as well as 2 Wheatear – a further three of the latter, plus a Spotted Flycatcher, being on Hengistbury and 8 Willow Warbler on Wick – along with 2 Yellow Wagtail over Central Marsh this evening. Also over the marsh, a couple of Little Tern, while a Black Tern was seen offshore from Double Dykes. Wader returns were low – 4 Whimbrel and 8 Dunlin, for example – and Kingfisher were seen both sides of the area. To finish, news just in of a Green Sandpiper briefly on North Marsh.

August 11th

Early in the morning, a Glossy Ibis and an Osprey passed over to the north; while, later, a Spotted Redshank dropped into South Marsh. There was some good passerine variety, if not quantity, including: a Pied Flycatcher, 2 Whinchat, 3 Wheatear, a Garden Warbler, 8 Yellow Wagtail and 15 Willow Warbler, all from Stanpit; with a French-ringed Sedge Warbler at Wick, from where 15 Swallow were the only hirundine return. The Stanpit Creek Little Tern were back numbering four – an adult and three juveniles, and two birds were later seen off Mudeford Quay; also six juvenile Mediterranean Gull about the place. Finishing, a couple of Common Sandpiper and 16 Dunlin were on the marsh.

August 10th

As the temperature continued to edge up, there was again a Little Tern presence in Stanpit Creek – today, an adult and two juveniles. The on-site waders included: a Little Ringed Plover, 2 Common Sandpiper, up to 10 Whimbrel, a Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Ringed Plover and 19 Dunlin; while the only passerine news is of 9 Yellow Wagtail about the marsh – six over and three landing with the ponies on Central Marsh. A juvenile Yellow-legged Gull was around South Marsh late in the afternoon, with at least 20 Mediterranean Gull – all but three being juveniles – were logged earlier. To finish, a Buzzard was once again in the airspace and the Sandwich Tern estimate was fifty.

August 9th

Spotted Flycatcher on Hengistbury – Ray Scott

One of the hundred or so Sandwich Tern currently using the area – Alan Crockard

As we move towards some more exceptionally hot weather, it’s nice there is still water on Priory Marsh and the impending spring tides should hopefully add a bit more – two or three Red-eyed Damselfly on there this afternoon. Earlier, the migrant passerines were headed by a Spotted Flycatcher, a Garden Warbler and 3 Tree Pipit, those over; plus up to 20 Willow Warbler and 15 Blackcap. The best of the waders was an over-flying Green Sandpiper, with support coming from 5 Common Sandpiper, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit seen to arrive, a Black-tailed Godwit, 3 Ringed Plover and 34 Dunlin. To wrap up: an adult and two juvenile Mediterranean Gulls were logged; 3 Kingfisher were seen at the same time; and, for the second day on the run, 2 Buzzard were overhead.

August 8th

A Glossy Ibis flew north over the area in the early morning, while a Cattle Egret was on East Marsh at the start and end of the day. A Little Tern family – an adult and three juveniles – frequented Stanpit Creek throughout and a Roseate Tern passed west; with 2 Common Tern and over a hundred Sandwich Tern resting inside the harbour. Also on the mud, up to 10 Whimbrel, 6 Ringed Plover, 34 Dunlin and a Turnstone. Of the few passerines noted, a Wood Warbler was in Ashtree Meadow, a Lesser Whitethroat was by the HHC and around 10 Willow Warbler were on Wick.

August 7th

Around 17:00 tonight, a load of gulls and terns came up from East Marsh and headed purposefully to the north – perhaps sensing an ant-hatch – in the flock were a single Black Tern and 5 Little Tern. Around fifteen minutes later, 2 Little Tern – an adult and a juvenile – fished for a while in Stanpit Creek. Earlier in the day, an Avocet and 3 Greenshank, along with 6 Ringed Plover and 19 Dunlin, were around Stanpit Bight; where 8 Shoveler were also seen. Migrant passerines were fewer than yesterday – just modest numbers of the commoner species; around 10 Swallow passed through; and a couple of Kingfisher were about.

August 6th

Whinchat – Alan Crockard

Sedge Warbler – Scott Usher

All three egrets were logged today – in addition to the expected ‘little’, a Cattle Egret and 2 Great White Egret headed north. Meanwhile, 2 Black Tern were amongst 93 Common Tern and around 30 Mediterranean Gull, all but two of those juveniles, which passed west through the harbour. There were also outbound passerines around Stanpit – including a Whinchat, 300 Sedge Warbler and 30 Willow Warbler. Moving to waders, 2 Common Sandpiper, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 13 Dunlin 20 Ringed Plover and 5 Snipe were also about the marsh; and, to finish, a couple of Kingfisher was reckoned, as well as 7 Teal.

August 5th

Juvenile Ringed Plover – Alan Crockard

Small Red-eyed Damselfly on the pond in the garden of the HHVC – Jackie Smith

Painted Lady – Peter Boardman

…and the barge currently undertaking works off the Long Groyne – Peter Boardman

Again, there were over a hundred Sandwich Tern settled inside the harbour on the early morning low, with ‘dozens’ being stated as commuting to and from Mudeford Quay as the waters flooded. On Wick, there was the surprise of a Nuthatch in the No Dogs Field, while 3 Wheatear were around the quay – with a further on Priory Marsh – and 10 Willow Warbler were about the area. Waders at Stanpit continue to be sparse – the day’s best being 2 Common Sandpiper, 5 Whimbrel, a Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Ringed Plover and 7 Dunlin. To finish: a couple of Mediterrean Gull were logged – one of them a juvenile moulting to first-winter plumage; adult and juvenile Peregrine were vocal high above the marsh; and various ant-hatches attracted Swift, Swallow and gulls.

August 4th

Clouded Yellow – Peter Boardman

Oak Eggar moth over Stanpit Bight – Jackie Smith

As the recent, westerly themed winds dropped, there were a lot of terns lingering around the area today – the best count being of 104 Sandwich Tern on the Flats, as well as 30 Common Tern either side of Mudeford Quay. Wader-wise, a Common Sandpiper preferred the scrape on the northern edge of Crouch Hill, while a Wood Sandpiper passed over Crouch Hill and a Little Ringed Plover, 6 Whimbrel and 2 Ringed Plover were also returned from Stanpit. Moving to passerines: 2 Grasshopper Warbler, a Garden Warbler, a Tree Pipit and a Wheatear were about the marsh, with 7 Willow Warbler on Wick. To finish, a Yellow-legged Gull of unspecified age was on Branders Bank and at least 15 Swift passed over.

August 3rd

Sleeping Black-headed Gull, adult and juvenile Sandwich Tern – Jackie Smith

A Roseate Tern cruised slowly west off Mudeford Quay at around 8:00 this morning, while an evening visit to Stanpit saw a Great White Egret head north. Otherwise, it was fairly quiet – a Common Sandpiper, 2 Dunlin and a Common Tern inside the harbour, with 2 Willow Warbler by the Wooden Bridge on Wick – being the only remaining interest.

August 2nd

Around 11:30 this morning, at least 60 Common Tern appeared at Stanpit before drifting off to the west. Meanwhile, an Avocet, an adult Grey Plover, a Common Sandpiper, 7 Whimbrel, 8 Dunlin and a Teal were also on the mud; with a Wheatear on Crouch Hill. In the late afternoon, one of the adult Peregrine, over the sandspit, twice attempted to pass a Turnstone to one of the juveniles; but each time the fortunate wader got away.

August 1st

Redshank – Alan Crockard

An early look from Mudeford Quay saw 23 Common Tern, 4 Sanderling and 2 Bar-tailed Godwit on the exposed sandbar, while a Wheatear was on the sandspit fence and 3 Gadwall landed on the sea. Later, Stanpit produced: 2 Common Sandpiper, 3 Dunlin, at least 8 Dunlin, 2 Ringed Plover and a breeding-plumaged, fly-over Turnstone; as well as a flock of around 50 Linnet on South Marsh. The day-return of Mediterranean Gull was of four birds and, of butterfly interest, Clouded Yellow are now starting to be seen.


We have a number of publications available including the current edition of Birds of Christchurch Harbour

Also, back issues from previous years and other goodies.


Visit our ONLINE SHOP where you can join CHOG, purchase items and make donations.