Posts Tagged ‘RSPB Lodmoor’

Spent the morning at the RSPB reserve at Lodmoor, just outside Weymouth.

On the islands, there were about 12 Common Snipe along with some common waterfowl.

As I walked down the western edge I was surprised to find a Black swan, This bird is native to Australia, so all birds encountered in the UK are escapes from bird collections.

Apart from around 50 Lapwing, the only other wading bird was a single Common Redshank. In with the flock of Black-headed Gulls was a single Mediterranean Gull and a couple of Common Gulls. In the reed-bed, a couple of Water Rail were heard calling and a flock of Common Pochard were seen on the northern pools.

In the afternoon Sue and I went to the cafe at Chesil beach for afternoon tea, which also gave me the opportunity to have a look on the southern end of the Fleet, where there was a Little Egret, 5 Red-breasted Mergansers and about 30 Dunlin.

The Fleet at Chesil

This North American wading bird is a relative of our Redshank. It breeds in Canada and Alaska and winters on the Gulf Coast of the USA and in south America.A few get blown across the Atlantic and winter in the UK and Europe.

This bird has been wintering at the RSPB reserve at Lodmoor, just outside Weymouth.

A morning walk around the RSPB reserve at Lodmoor. making my way along the northern edge there are some common waterfowl on the pools in the reed-bed.

On the west scrape I find a Ruff and a large party of Lapwing. One bird however is drawing a lot of attention. It is a Lesser Yellowlegs, so called because it is the smaller of two similar species, the other being Greater Yellowlegs. This American Wading bird has been wintering here for some weeks now. It is a very obliging bird.

Lesser Yellowlegs

Moving on down the west scrape I find Common Snipe, Dunlin and Little Grebe along with a party of Mallard who seem to think everyone is going to feed them. I arrive at the the southern scrape and find a Little Egret, a Grey Heron and some Common Snipe.

Common Snipe

On my way back to the cottage, I cross the middle of the reserve on Beachdown way, which bisects the reserve from south to north. There has been a wintering Yellow-Browed Warbler on this path and having got some information from a local birder on its favoured location, I sit down to wait. After about 20 minutes I hear its distinctive call and then see the bird fly from a tree. Then there is silence. About 10 minutes later it started calling again and I can see it madly dashing about in a tree in front of me. This seems to be a characteristic of this species. I get some good, if fleeting views.

Yellow-Browed Warbler.
Photo by Dave Curtis (https://www.flickr.com/photos/davethebird/)
Eurasian Robin
Grey Heron

In the afternoon Sue and I went to the Chesil Beach observation point. The tide is out so there is not much close into our position. Out on the water, I can see a couple of Red-Breasted Merganser along with gulls and Cormorants.

The Fleet at Chesil Beach

Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Eurasian Teal (Anas crecca)
Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Eurasian Sparrowhawk [sp] (Accipiter nisus)
Western Marsh Harrier [sp] (Circus aeruginosus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Black-tailed Godwit [sp] (Limosa limosa)
Ruff (Calidris pugnax)
Dunlin [sp] (Calidris alpina)
Common Snipe [sp] (Gallinago gallinago)
Lesser Yellowlegs (Tringa flavipes)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Mediterranean Gull (Ichthyaetus melanocephalus)
Mew Gull [sp] (Larus canus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Rock Dove [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Bearded Reedling [sp] (Panurus biarmicus)
Cetti’s Warbler [sp] (Cettia cetti)
Long-tailed Tit [sp] (Aegithalos caudatus)
Yellow-browed Warbler (Phylloscopus inornatus)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
White Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla alba)
Eurasian Bullfinch [sp] (Pyrrhula pyrrhula)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)

On the way to Ferrybridge for coffee this morning a Eurasian Sparrowhawk flew over the harbour at Weymouth. On the rising tide, a flock of 25 Ringed Plovers together with 3 Ruddy Turnstone and a single Dunlin were feeding on the mudflats. There were only 6 Brent Geese today and a scan through the gulls revealed 4 species but no Mediterranean Gull. There was still a good number of Red-breasted Merganser present. Two Rooks were rather a surprise visitor and a Eurasian Skylark was heard singing.

DSCN8786-39

Ringed Plover

On the way back to our cottage we dropped in at Lodmoor where we flushed a Kingfisher as we approached the viewpoint. Once again there were good numbers of Common Snipe along with Lapwing and Black-tailed Godwits. A single Mediterranean Gull was present with the other Gulls.

Common Snipe

House Sparrow (top left), Dunnock (bottom left) and Northern Lapwing (right)

Late afternoon we heard that a Eurasian Spoonbill had been seen arriving at Lodmoor so we re-visited the viewpoint and after a few minutes the bird was seen flying from the reed-bed into a ditch out of view. Shortly afterwards it took flight and was seen flying away towards Weymouth.

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Spoonbill. Photo by Joe Pell (https://www.flickr.com/photos/pellyutd/)

 

Brent Goose [sp] (Branta bernicla)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)
Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Eurasian Teal [sp] (Anas crecca)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Eurasian Spoonbill [sp] (Platalea leucorodia)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Eurasian Sparrowhawk [sp] (Accipiter nisus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Common Ringed Plover [sp] (Charadrius hiaticula)
Common Snipe [sp] (Gallinago gallinago)
Black-tailed Godwit [sp] (Limosa limosa)
Ruddy Turnstone [sp] (Arenaria interpres)
Dunlin [sp] (Calidris alpina)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Mediterranean Gull (Ichthyaetus melanocephalus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Eurasian Skylark [sp] (Alauda arvensis)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Pied Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla alba)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)

Keith and I are in Dorset for a few days birdwatching. Arriving from London by train early afternoon we drop our bags and make our way to Radipole Lake RSPB reserve which forms part of the Wey estuary just before it enters into Weymouth harbour. The information centre is a good place for some initial idea of what birds are to be found in the area. On the lake near the centre are a few Mallard and Tufted Duck plus some Herring Gulls and Cormorants. Swallows swoop low over the lake and a Reed Warbler flies past the observation window.

Radipole RSPB reserve

Radipole RSPB reserve

We were just about to set out around the reserve, when news comes that the Purple Heron that has been roosting at the other local RSPB reserve Lodmoor, which is on the eastern edge of Weymouth has been seen on Overcombe Pools. So a quick decision to change our plans and head for Lodmoor. Birding on the way through the reserve we add a few species before arriving at the Overcombe end of the reserve. Joining one watcher, we find that he has not seen the bird. We eventually decide to walk around the reserve to view the pools from the other side. We find another birder here but he too has not seen the bird. We wait patiently for an hour and then decide to go and get something to eat and return in time to see it come to roost that evening. It has been very consistant during the 7 or so days it has been present coming to roost in the reed-bed between 9 and 9.30pm.

Overcombe Pools Lodmoor RSPB reserve

Overcombe Pools Lodmoor RSPB reserve

At 8.30 we at back on the reserve at a point where we have a panoramic view of the reed-bed. At 9.20 a bird in seen in flight from the Overcombe end and flies right past where are standing – excellent views and no doubts it was a Purple Heron. Only a handful of these birds are seen in the UK every year so to get such good views is amazing.

Purple Heron (Ardea purpurea)
Purple Heron in flight
Photo by LIp Kee Yap (https://www.flickr.com/photos/lipkee/)

Its a 2 mile walk back to our hotel but it is with a light step at such a fantastic beginning to our trip.

Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)
Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Purple Heron [sp] (Ardea purpurea)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Western Marsh Harrier [sp] (Circus aeruginosus)
Water Rail [sp] (Rallus aquaticus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Pigeon [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
Cetti’s Warbler [sp] (Cettia cetti)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Lesser Whitethroat [sp] (Sylvia curruca)
Common Whitethroat [sp] (Sylvia communis)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Song Thrush [sp] (Turdus philomelos)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)

Small White (Artogeia rapae)
Orange Tip (Anthocharis cardamines)

This morning walked to the RSPB reserve at Lodmoor. This marshland reserve is situated on the edge of Weymouth.

RSPB Lodmoor

RSPB Lodmoor

RSPB Lodmoor

RSPB Lodmoor

There was plenty of activity and the species count started to increase. Amongst the species present were good numbers of Canada Geese and Little Egrets. Also present were a pair of Northern Shoveler and a group of Common Shelduck. In the reedbed Reed Warblers, Sedge Warblers and Cetti’s Warblers were singing and I was able to get good views of the first two species.

Oystercatcher

Oystercatcher

Grey Heron

Grey Heron

Little Egret

Little Egret

Shelduck

Shelduck

In the afternoon I went to Northe point. This outcrop of land forms the western bank of Weymouth Harbour and overlooks the entrance to Portland Harbour. It is the site of Northe fort built as a defensive position for the harbours. The rocks around the base of the peninsular are a good site for Ruddy Turnstone and today I am fortunate to find a single bird present. On previous trips this has also been a good spot for fishing Common Terns and I soon locate two fishing in the sea off the end of the breakwater.

Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)
Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Common Kestrel [sp] (Falco tinnunculus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Ruddy Turnstone [sp] (Arenaria interpres)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Sandwich Tern (Thalasseus sandvicensis)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Pigeon [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Eurasian Jay [sp] (Garrulus glandarius)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
Cetti’s Warbler [sp] (Cettia cetti)
Long-tailed Tit [sp] (Aegithalos caudatus)
Willow Warbler [sp] (Phylloscopus trochilus)
Sedge Warbler (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Eurasian Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
Common Whitethroat [sp] (Sylvia communis)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
White Wagtail [sp] (Motacilla alba)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Common Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Large White (Pieris brassicae)
Holly Blue (Celastrina argiolus)