Sightings for September 2019

August 31st

Bar-tailed Godwit
Bartailed Godwit and Curlew - Scott Usher

The wader selection at Stanpit got back on track today the best being 3 Curlew Sandpiper and a Little Ringed Plover but also: a Greenshank, 22 Knot, 3 Sanderling, 4 Common Sandpiper, 5 Whimbrel, 3 Bar-tailed Godwit two adults still in breeding plumage and a juvenile - and 8 Black-tailed Godwit. There were also, presumably, Ringed Plover and Dunlin around. The morning at Wick saw a Garden Warbler, a Grey Wagtail and 10 Willow Warbler; while a Kingfisher was by the Wooden Bridge and a pair of Gadwall were about the area. 

August 30th

It was very quiet this morning around Hengistbury and Wick, with just a few Blackcap, Whitethroat and Willow Warbler to show for a reasonable amount of effort. The afternoon at Stanpit saw: 2 Greenshank, a Bar-tailed Godwit, 6 Black-tailed Godwit and around 130, distant small waders, of which at least 100 were Ringed Plover; plus 3 Wheatear on Crouch Hill. The only other news is of Kingfisher seen a few times about Wick.

August 29th

The weather perked up a little today and brought some migrants with it. The following were from Wick to the Stunted Oaks, including Whitepits: a Pied Flycatcher, a Spotted Flycatcher, 2 Whinchat, 2 Garden Warbler, 5 Wheatear, 31 Whitethroat and 23 Willow Warbler; plus 2 Tree Pipit over. Around the same time, at Stanpit, there was a Redstart, 2 Spotted Flycatcher, a Lesser Whitethroat and, by the evening, up to 17 Wheatear. The only wader news is of 4 Knot and 5 Greenshank; but a Little Gull was a bonus amongst over 460 Herring Gull at Stanpit tonight. 

August 28th

The recent run of Pied Flycatcher continued this morning with a couple on the Barn Field, where there were also 4 Spotted Flycatcher. Meanwhile, there was a Whinchat and 5 Wheatear on Crouch Hill. In general, however, passerines were sparse just 5 Yellow Wagtail and 7 Willow Warbler being the best of the rest. The wader selection seems to be going through a little lull the days totals being 2 Greenshank, 4 Knot, a Common Sandpiper, 3 Sanderling, a Bar-tailed Godwit and 7 Black-tailed Godwit; but seemingly none of the two most-expected species of small wader on site. 

August 27th

Grey Heron and Little Egret Jackie Smith

The HHC reeds saw of fall of Sedge Warbler this morning 60 birds ringed out of an overall catch of 82, the most notable other being a Yellow Wagtail. Elsewhere before lunch, 2 Whinchat were on the Barn Field, a couple of Lesser Whitethroat were on Wick and 2 Garden Warbler were on the former golf course embankment at Stanpit; with a further 12 Yellow Wagtail and one Whinchat, 13 Wheatear, at least 20 Whitethroat and 15 Willow Warbler across the site. There was, indeed, another evening foray this time around Wick Fields where a Pied Flycatcher, a Spotted Flycatcher and 3 Whinchat proved its a worthwhile activity. The morning at Stanpit was good for raptors, as an Osprey headed west to east, a male Marsh Harrier hunted and a Peregrine sat on the Priory tower. Moving to the waders, a juvenile Curlew Sandpiper promised to the event of the day, but it was somewhat trumped by a total of similarly-aged, 41 Knot! In addition, there were 2 Greenshank, 5 Common Sandpiper, 5 Sanderling, 4 Black-tailed Godwit and a Snipe. To finish it: a couple of juvenile Mediterranean Gull were present; a Kingfisher was seen from the Wooden Bridge; and the duck included 5 Wigeon and 11 Teal. 

August 26th

Rock Pipit Alan Crockard

Despite an incredibly misty start, there was a good selection of passerines to be had. On the southern side of the area, there was a Pied Flycatcher, a Redstart, a Garden Warbler, 3 Lesser Whitethroat and up to 30 Willow Warbler; while Stanpit hosted a couple of Spotted Flycatcher, including one on Fishermans Bank, and most of the days Tree Pipit, Yellow Wagtail and Grey Wagtail, which barely scraped past three each as well as seven of the posts ten Wheatear. A flock of 5 Greenshank passed west, while settled waders were headed by 8 Knot, 5 Common Sandpiper, 5 Sanderling and 2 Whimbel. There was a clear influx of Teal, with over twenty at Stanpit, where the Wigeon also increased to three. At least a dozen Mediterranean Gull were on site, as was a juvenile Yellow-legged Gull that off Fishermans Bank an adult, male Peregrine hunted and a couple of Kingfisher were returned. 

August 25th

There was decent selection of passerine migrants around today; including some during an all-too-rare, evening visit to Hengistbury, when 4 Whinchat, a Redstart and a Garden Warbler were returned. Earlier, from across the site, there were: 6 Spotted Flycatcher, a Lesser Whitethroat, a further Garden Warbler, a Lesser Whitethroat and 11 Wheatear; plus a Tree Pipit and 15 Yellow Wagtail over. A movement of Meadow Pipit and Swallow was also mentioned, but there are no numbers; although a total of 5 Swift was turned in. Meanwhile, of 39 birds trapped for ringing, there were twenty-four and eight of Sedge Warbler and Reed Warbler respectively. Moving to other types, a couple of juvenile Arctic Tern and 18 Common Tern were at Stanpit, where a Greenshank, 2 Knot, 2 Common Sandpiper, 5 Whimbrel and 35 Black-tailed Godwit were also present; as well as a Marsh Harrier early on. As many as 3 Kingfisher were about, as was a single Peregrine. 

August 24th

Dartford Warbler Alan Crockard
Spotted Flycatcher Robert Gray

Although they are now referred to as scarce, its still always raises the pulse to see a Great White Egret in the area one this morning that came in from the west and descended into Barn Bight for a short time. It was, once again, slightly disappointing on the migrant passerine front; although at least 3 Whinchat on the Long Field and a Spotted Flycatcher elsewhere were some consolation. In addition to a single Tree Pipit, 13 Yellow Wagtail passed over including a flock of nine quite late in the morning and 2 Swift, plus a steady trickle of Swallow, coasted. Moving back to the bushes, where a Lesser Whitethroat, 10 Whitethroat and 4 Willow Warbler were on Wick Fields. The only other submitted news for today is of a Kingfisher along the Batters; but from yesterday over 50 Yellow Wagtail went to roost in the HHC reeds, where nine were trapped and ringed. 

August 23rd

The day started with some unexpected mist, which didnt seem to do much for migrant passerines. All the following come from Wick a Spotted Flycatcher, 15 Yellow Wagtail, 4 Tree Pipit, a Lesser Whitethroat, 21 Whitethroat, 10 Willow Warbler and four out-of-habitat Reed Warbler. Also from there, the resident male Bullfinch, while a couple of tatty-looking, adult Mediterranean Gull passed west. Over on Stanpit, there were 5 Wheatear on Crouch Hill, plus a Knot, 4 Sanderling and a female-type Shoveler in Stanpit Bight. Finally, a Kingfisher was seen on a few occasions in Wick Hams. 

August 22nd

Writing in contemporary terms, there was another great count of Ringed Plover at Stanpit 114 birds where a Greenshank, 5 Knot, 5 Whimbrel, 5 Sanderling, 3 Black-tailed Godwit and around 100 Dunlin were also present. Across the drier areas of the marsh, a Spotted Flycatcher, a Redstart, a Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Garden Warbler and 7 Wheatear were logged; while a Tree Pipit and 16 Yellow Wagtail moved over. The Willow Warbler total around the site came to 17, with an identical number of southbound Swallow returned, as well as a single House Martin and 80 Sand Martin. To finish up, a Kingfisher whizzed around the No Dogs Field. 

August 21st

A few passerines and hirundines passed through this morning, including: 4 Tree Pipit, 17 Yellow Wagtail, 5 Grey Wagtail, 95 Sand Martin and 40 Swallow. Meanwhile, the pick of the grounded birds was: 2 Grasshopper Warbler on Priory Marsh, a Redstart in the North Scrubs,a Lesser Whitethroat on the golf course embankment, a Garden Warbler and 6 Wheatear; amongst the more-expected staple of Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Whitethroat, Blackcap, Reed Warbler and Sedge Warbler. A Brent Goose at Stanpit was reasonable surprise, but the single Wigeon remains and was joined by a Gadwall. Wader-wise, a couple of Green Sandpiper passed over Wick, with 2 Greenshank, 2 Common Sandpiper, 2 Knot, 6 Sanderling, 8 Whimbrel, 2 Black-tailed Godwit, 62 Ringed Plover and 150 Dunlin inside the harbour; while a further 7 Knot moved straight through to the west. To round up, a Kingfisher and 12 Water Rail were in Parky Meade Rail, and a Peregrine sat on the Priory. 

August 20th

There was a clear influx of passerines today, headed by a female-type Pied Flycatcher in the Wood, but also a Whinchat and 2 Wheatear on the Long Field and Barn Field respectively; as well as 25 Whitethroat across the latter two sites. Meanwhile, around 20 Willow Warbler were dotted about. Overhead, a Green Sandpiper moved through and 15 House Martin fed over Wick Meadows. 

August 19th

A Green Sandpiper was on Wick Meadows this morning, when a Greenshank, 4 Whimbrel, 17 Ringed Plover and 48 Dunlin were at Stanpit. Meanwhile, a first-calendar-year Yellow-legged Gull spent some time off Grimmery Bank and 6 Common Tern were also inside the harbour; along with 69 Sandwich Tern. Willow Warbler numbers just about reached double figures and there was a Wheatear on Crouch Hill. Finishing up, the Wigeon remains and a Peregrine was seen on a couple of occasions. 

August 18th

Just before the rain set in this morning, there was a female-type Redstart, a Spotted Flycatcher and a Garden Warbler by the Wooden Bridge on Wick, while 123 Ringed Plover were at Stanpit. The only other news for the post also comes from the latter site, where eleven juvenile Knot were present in the afternoon, along with 3 Whimbrel. 

August 17th

Greenshank Jackie Smith
Common Tern, Sandwich Tern & Ringed Plover Jackie Smith

The sea was again the centre of attention for the morning, when singles of Arctic Skua and Great Skua passed west, as well as a couple of juvenile Arctic Tern and a similarly-aged Yellow-legged Gull. Although counts of westbound terns were made, none have been received; but the estimate of lingering Sandwich Tern peaked at 300. Also from the sea, a flock of 3 Common Scoter that has probably been hanging around for some time now. No Kittiwake were offshore, but there was a bird at Stanpit, along with 12 Common Tern. Meanwhile, the waders there included: a Spotted Redshank, 2 Knot, 2 Common Sandpiper, a Sanderling, 5 Whimbrel, 24 Ringed Plover and 33 Dunlin; with Holloways Dock, Hengistbury, contributing singles of Greenshank and Whimbrel, 13 Ringed Plover and 14 Dunlin. Moving back to Stanpit, there were 2 Yellow Wagtail and 6 Wheatear. 

August 16th

With the wind building up to over 40km/h throughout the day, accompanied by squally showers, the sea was watched from the Beach Huts between 8:00 and 14:15. An exact 30 Balearic Shearwater were counted moving west, along with a non-adult Pomarine Skua, a Great Skua, an intermediate-phase, adult Arctic Skua that lingering for a while two juvenile Kittiwake, 5 Fulmar, 80 Common Tern and 69 Gannet. A constant feeding flock comprised large gulls and terns the latter peaking at around 300, of which at least 90% were Sandwich Tern. Shag, around 5 birds, outnumbered Cormorant on the water and 3 Common Scoter headed towards the Solent. A little later, a juvenile Arctic Tern was seen from Mudeford Quay, along with a further two juvenile Kittiwake. Waders seen on or about the sandspit and in Holloways Dock, included: a Greenshank, a Whimbrel, 5 Sanderling, a Turnstone, 5 Ringed Plover and 12 Dunlin. Meanwhile, a couple of Greenshank headed north over Wick and the small number of decked passerines included a dozen or so Willow Warbler. Finishing on that side of the area, a male Bullfinch was on Roebury Lane and a Peregrine hunted Wick Hams. The news from Stanpit during the morning involves: an un-aged Arctic Tern, 3 Little Tern, 60 Common Tern and 200 Sandwich Tern; a Ruff; and at least 2 Yellow-legged Gull, again not aged. 

August 15th

Gannet Leo Pyke
Common Tern Leo Pyke

The weather was far more accommodating today, when a Balearic Shearwater lingered in the feeding flock of gulls in Christchurch Bay. Around the same time, a Black Tern passed west through the harbour, where a juvenile Yellow-legged Gull, 11 Mediterranean Gull and 175 Sandwich Tern were also noted. The waders included: 6 Knot, a Greenshank, 2 Common Sandpiper, 5 Whimbrel, a Sanderling, 45 Ringed Plover, 23 Dunlin and a good count of 155 Redshank; while the best of the passerines were a Whinchat, a Yellow Wagtail and 3 Wheatear, but also a smattering of Willow Warbler, Blackcap and Whitethroat. The Wigeon remains and was joined by 6 Teal. 

August 14th

On a thoroughly wet day, the sea again received full attention. From Mudeford Quay early on, the best was two juvenile Arctic Tern which entered the harbour through the Run; but also, all west: around 50 Sandwich Tern, 23 Common Tern, a Kittiwake, a Mediterranean Gull, 2 Fulmar and 6 Gannet.  A subsequent, more-extended watch from 9:20 to 14:50 from the Beach Huts produced: a Balearic Shearwater, five unidentified shearwaters, 516 Sandwich Tern, 99 Common Tern, a Little Tern, 6 Kittiwake, 2 Mediterranean Gull both juveniles, 12 Fulmar and 82 Gannet; again, all west, into the wind. In addition, 3 Common Scoter lingered and 12 Shelduck arrived over the quay. The only passerine news is of a Wheatear on the sandspit; while waders included a Black-tailed Godwit, a Ringed Plover and 24 Dunlin, mostly in Holloways Dock.

August 13th

There was an excellent, if not record, presence of Sandwich Tern around the harbour today.  A 2-hour watch from the Gulley during the afternoon returned 850 west, while 100 passed in the same direction during a shorter period in the morning. Also at sea throughout the day, 45 Common Tern, 40 Gannet, an estimated 500 Herring Gull and 3 Common Scoter east. This evening, resting inside the harbour, there were 300 Sandwich Tern and 41 Common Tern. A Pied Flycatcher in the North Scrubs, Stanpit, late this afternoon was a nice record, while small numbers of Willlow Warbler, Blackcap, Whitethroat and Sedge Warbler were across the site. The increasing wader selection included: 4 Knot, 2 Greenshank, a Common Sandpiper, a Whimbrel, 3 Sanderling, a Bar-tailed Godwit, 16 Black-tailed Godwit, 35 Ringed Plover and 57 Dunlin; with the first Wigeon of the winter also at Stanpit. Rounding up, a couple of Coal Tit were in the Nursery and of butterfly interest a Clouded Yellow was on the Barn Field. 

August 12th

Cormorant Alan Hayden
Lapwing Alan Hayden
Great Blackbacked Gull - Roger Tidball

A Green Sandpiper over Wick Fields early on is the pick from a fairly quiet day, when 20 Sedge Warbler, as well as 3 Willow Warbler and 5 Reed Warbler, were ringed at the HHC. Field-observed warblers, meanwhile, included up to 20 Willow Warbler and 11 Blackcap across the area. The local Reed Warbler are still feeding their young, however. 

August 11th

There were 10 Willow Warbler on Wick this morning, while a House Martin passed through and a Kingfisher was on Wick Hams. 

August 10th

A Storm Petrel was seen briefly from the beach huts this morning; the bird was moving slowly west, also from there, an Arctic Skua.  The sea was also  watched from Mudeford Quay so the combined totals from both sites were 120 Sandwich Tern, 15 Common Tern, 14 Gannet, 4 Kittiwake, 3 Sanderling, 2 Fulmar and singles of Mediterranean Gull and Great Crested Grebe, all these west.  The coming and going of small waders suggest that many were sheltering on the sandspit with totals of 46 Dunlin, 11 Ringed Plover and 8 Turnstone.  Holloways Dock held one each of Greenshank and Whimbrel while another Whimbrel arrived over the quay.

August 9th

Greenshank Ray Scott
House Sparrow Tina Scott

Although the weather wasnt as inclement as perhaps forecast, it was still pretty windy particularly later in the day. A 3-hour watch over the water from Mudeford Quay yielded: 54 Sandwich Tern, 12 Common Tern and a Fulmar all west; 6 Common Scoter five west, one east; and 4 Gannet. Meanwhile, the better of the waders at Stanpit were: a Ruff, 2 Knot, 2 Greenshank, 4 Sanderling, 8 Whimbrel, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, 8 Ringed Plover and 12 Dunlin; with additional birds on Hengistbury comprising: a Greenshank, a Common Sandpiper, a Whimbrel, 4 Ringed Plover and 15 Dunlin. The only other point of interest was 3 Teal on the marsh. 

August 8th

The first Redstart of the autumn, a female bird, was on Wick this morning, as was a Lesser Whitethroat; while a Grasshopper Warbler was at Stanpit and 4 Tree Pipit, 4 Yellow Wagtail and a Grey Wagtail passed over there. Meanwhile, up to 30 Willow Warbler and 4 Wheatear were across the site. A Knot was probably the best of the waders inside the harbour, which also included: a Sanderling, a Common Sandpiper, 14 Whimbrel and a Bar-tailed Godwit; plus a couple of Common Tern. A male Bullfinch was again on Wick, where they can now assumed to be resident, and an almost-hooded crow was at Stanpit. 

August 7th

A juvenile Yellow-legged Gull was inside the harbour off its namesake hotel this morning, while later on 6 Mediterranean Gull were at Stanpit. Sandwich Tern numbers are now building -  of the various reports today, the best was of 165 roosting at Stanpit tonight; in addition, a couple of Common Tern and 37 Gannet moved west at sea. Most of the days wader news is from the marsh, although Holloways Dock and Barn Bight held some of the numbers, which included: 4 Greenshank, 2 Common Sandpiper, 15 Whimbrel, a Bar-tailed Godwit, a Black-tailed Godwit, 8 Ringed Plover, 16 Dunlin and 102 Redshank. Passerines were again sparse, with just 5 Wheatear, 2 Willow Warbler and fifteen presumed migrant Whitethroat making the post. 

August 6th

The only news for today is of 5 Willow Warbler and a Kingfisher about Wick.

August 5th

Treecreeper Leo Pyke
Treecreeper Jackie Smith

A Treecreeper in the North Scrubs is, by local standards, the bird of the day; with the only other small-bird news involving 6 Wheatear on Crouch Hill and 5 Willow Warbler on Wick. The wader interest inside the harbour came from: a Sanderling, 3 Common Sandpiper, 12 Whimbrel, a Bar-tailed Godwit, 9 Black-tailed Godwit, 12 Ringed Plover and 10 Dunlin; while 3 Common Tern were also present. Rounding up, the traditional, summer Starling flock was today reckoned to be 400 birds. 

August 4th

A Garganey was in Parky Meade Rail this morning, while 3 Teal were in Mother Sillers Channel. A Little Ringed Plover in Stanpit Creek and a Green Sandpiper by the Wooden Bridge on Wick are the headline waders, but also 2 Greenshank, 2 Sanderling, a Common Sandpiper, 8 Whimbrel, 19 Dunlin and a Snipe at Stanpit; where two each of Mediterranean Gull and Common Tern were also present. A maximum of 5 Wheatear were on Crouch Hill, with other passerines, all from Wick, including a Yellow Wagtail, a Garden Warbler and 8 Willow Warbler. 

August 3rd

Greenshank Scott Usher
Sedge Warbler Scott Usher

Firstly, the sad news of the failure of the Oystercatcher breeding on the sandspit. From reliable reports received so far, it would seem two dogs were permitted to enter the fenced area and one of them a dachshund grabbed the chick. We are working to get fuller details and to see if a case can be brought. On a fine morning, there were 2 Garden Warbler in the North Scrubs, a Tree Pipit over Wick and 2 Yellow Wagtail over Hengistbury, as well as over a dozen Willlow Warbler and scattered, Whitethroat, Blackcap, Chiffchaff, Sedge Warbler and Reed Warbler. The latter two species, at least, are still fledging young in the area, so separating residents from transient birds is not always straight forward. Otherwise, its just a Greenshank in Mother Sillers Channel, 2 Common Sandpiper and 14 Dunlin to remark upon. 

August 2nd

There were far fewer migrant passerines around today; for example, just 9 Sedge Warbler turned in. The North Scrubs at Stanpit did hold a Lesser Whitethroat and 3 Garden Warbler, however, while up to 50 Willow Warbler were spread about; along with one or two Whitethroat and Reed Warbler in odd places. In addition, there were 5 Wheatear, one on the sandspit and the rest at Stanpit, a Yellow Wagtail over, and a Grey Wagtail on Wick meadows. Finishing up with the perching birds, a Nuthatch was in Ashtree Meadow. A Green Sandpiper at Stanpit this evening heads the waders, with the support coming from: a Greenshank, 6 Common Sandpiper, 8 Whimbrel, a juvenile Ringed Plover and 12 Dunlin also on the marsh; and a Sanderling, 6 Ringed Plover and 6 Turnstone on the sandspit. Finally, a juvenile Mediterranean Gull and a Peregrine make the post. 

August 1st

Wheatear Leo Pyke
Adult Turnstone still in breeding plumage Gary Foyle

The Wheatear are now starting to come back through a total of six today, one on the sandspit and five at Stanpit. Sedge Warbler were around in much greater numbers over a hundred at Stanpit being the estimate, as well as a Grasshopper Warbler and 4 Garden Warbler; and, in addition to three in an isolated bush on the sandspit, there were 19 Willow Warbler spread across the site. The pick of the waders was a heard-only Wood Sandpiper, but also an Avocet, 28 Common Sandpiper, a Knot, 2 Bar-tailed Godwit, a Whimbrel, around 15 Dunlin and a Turnstone. The remaining news comes from a male Bullfinch on Wick and a Great Crested Grebe in Parky Meade Rail. 

Sightings for earlier months can be found in our Sightings Archive.
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