Sunday 17 June 2018

33 of us travelled down to RSPB Arne Reserve at Poole Harbour, by coach. The weather was rather grey and breezy, but we had been promised, incorrectly, better fare in the afternoon. So the conditions were not ideal. In spite of this we together listed 56 species, which was not bad. The group split up into two main parties in the morning, one going south to Coombe Heath the other north towards Shipstal. On the Heath we found a few Dartford warblers, stonechats, linnets and meadow pipits. The star bird was a spoonbill, feeding in the creek below us. There were also shelducks and little egrets on the water. Swifts and swallows flew overhead. Unfortunately, the hoped-for osprey did not appear. Meanwhile the northern party saw a brief marsh harrier, some curlews and black-tailed godwits. There were also several more shelducks with families. Around the Reserve could be heard chiffchaffs, willow warblers, a tree pipit and a cuckoo. The woodlands were rather quiet, but we did see several sika deer. An unexpected pleasure was a lovely purple hairstreak by the Café.