25 Sept 2014

25 Sep 14 - Migrants, Residents & Idiots At Studland

After a few grotty overcast days, the sun was out early & I was looking forward to getting out around the Studland patch. First stop was South Haven and a chance to look around for some migrants in the bushes. There were good numbers of Chiffchaffs and a few Goldcrests in the Tit flocks and the highlight around the lake area was this Spotted Flycatcher. There seems to have been good numbers of Spotted Flycatchers this Autumn, so hopefully they have had a good breeding season.
Spotted Flycatcher: I never get tired of seeing Spotted Flycatchers, especially as they tend to be erratic locally in the Spring & therefore the August & September tend to be the best months to see them
It's just getting to the time of the year to start checking the Heather Walk. This is a trail which heads off from the beach with some good trees in it. It is a good spot for mixed Tit & Warbler flocks & there is always a chance of a rarity in the flocks, although it's probably a bit early. In Autumn 2011 there were 3 Yellow-browed Warbler sightings over a 4 week period. Each of the birds looked different, but with no photos taken we will never know for sure.
Reed Bunting: There are usually a few around at the start of the trail. The first Reed Bunting for the Blog
Migrant Hawker: Female. Migrant & Common Hawkers have 2 spots on each of segments 9 & 10 (nearest the end of the abdomen), whereas Southern Hawker has bands on these segments. Migrant Hawkers have a prominent yellow triangle on segment 2. Additionally, the costa (leading edge to the forewing) is brown which separates this species from Common Hawker (which had a yellow costa)
Migrant Hawker: Female. Showing the brown costa & yellow triangle. This is easily the commonest Hawker flying locally at the moment. I've seen the occasional Southern Hawker in the last few weeks & yet to find a Common Hawker this year: it is definitely not common locally
Migrant Hawker: Female. Head on view
Migrant Hawker: Female. A nice face
The Great White Egret was on view again in the Little Egret roost at Littlesea. Although visible from the High Hide, it is too far at that point for photos. But the High Hide is about the only place to see this roost clearly. Still there have been plenty of photos of this GWE in recent posts.

The final site was Brands Bay, just as the tide was starting to drop. Highlights were 2 Greenshanks, a Whimbrel & a Knot. All seen until 2 idiot canoeists decided to come into the bay & explore all the side inlets. They must have been able to see the bird hide & the open windows. They must also have been able to see they were flushing all the Ducks, Waders & Gulls in the bay. But in a totally selfish way they insisted on flushing everything & then going to the back of the back of the bay, to flush many of the Birds a second time. I have nothing against canoeists in principal, but they need to consider that there are some bays such as Brands Bay, Middlebere & a few other bays around Poole Harbour, that get good numbers of roosting Birds & it is just irresponsible & selfish to disturb them. Non Birdwatchers probably only think these Birds are sitting around. Often they have been up half the night feeding or potentially migrating at this time of the year and are resting & sleeping whilst they wait for the water levels to drop again to be able to feed. If you are a canoeist and you see a large group of Birds in a bay, please turn back & don't disturb them. If they had done this a few days ago, it would have been even worse as they would have flush Birds into the back of the bay where another antisocial person, a hunter was waiting.
Irresponsible canoeists: Do you know these people. If so, perhaps you could ask them not to try & flush every single Bird in sight next time. I was fairly polite in this request & very polite at this time given the presence of a small kid with his dad in the hide