So.… 2nd Day of 4

That I'm off work and Mrs PB isn't, and I STILL Have No Chores (I think Mrs PB has forgotten I'm off!!)

So the forecast was fine and still so I thought I'll trundle to Arne for the Dartford Warblers. They like a nice calm day, and 8 were spotted yesterday.

I scraped the ice from the windscreen (1st time this winter!) and wondered if the rush hour traffic would let me beat the sunrise to the hide. Nahhhh, 20 minutes later I'd done about 5 miles 

Anyhow, got to Arne, still, a nice crisp but misty morning, I got out the car and heard a horrendous, shrieking, bellowing screaming noise.... who was being murdered?? No one.... it's the rut innit!! i've not seen deer there for a while, so my hopes were raised.

1st up though, the artistry of our eight legged friends caught my eye

I then saw the first of the deer

A flash of movement caught my eye

A second was further up the tree, but in shadow. Then down the slope a bit I spied

As I walked along to where I've seen the Dartfords before I saw some Lollipops

I got to the top of the rise overlooking the channel (Wareham not English) and saw one of my staples

Flying towards the massed ranks of gulls and waders

I wandered along to the hide and found wader city, Avocets

Curlew and Redshank (I think)

Black Tailed Godwits

I moved on, disappointed not to have seen the Dartford, and decided

a) it was early...they may be having a lie in, and

b) it was chilly, they may be snuggled in the duvets knowing their brekkie wouldn't be up and about yet, so I went around again

I saw more deer, these separated by both yardage and time!

I heard a distinctive Warbler "tune", and CLICK... a loverly Stonechat

But then possibly (maybe) a Juvenile Dartford popped up

I decided to head down to Lodmoor in Weymouth to continue my morning out, and was greeted with Gadwall

And a serious looking rook

And a Tufty

and Teal

Twitter is saying there's Jack Snipe at Lodmoor (iffy pics, sorry) not sure if this is it

Imagine my surprise, after the cold night, seeing Ruddy? Darter

Another Gadwall


Now the other side

My Gosh, I'm beautiful


It can't have been as cold as I thought..

Last time I was here there were lots and lots and lots and lots of geese..... this time it was just lots

  • A fine set PB and seems you escaped another day of chores lol Lovely variety of birds and late dragonflies. I'm not an expert on bird ID but think your "juvie Dartford W." may be a female Stonechat. Will leave the snipe to others with more knowledge but I'd guess at Common as bill looks a little too long for Jack. Your rook may be a crow. Love the web, it always amazes me how fast spiders can create such a beautiful and clever work of art !
    Looks like you had such a good 2nd day out and I look forward to Day 3 !


    Regards, Hazel 

    "Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again" 

  • Another fine chore-less day by the looks of it. I was forced to think there, have I seen a full circular web as opposed to just a section? I'll have to keep an eye out now! It's impressive anyway. Great to get all the deer amongst everything else. No frosts here, yet. Too cloudy, probably!
    I agree with Hazy, re the female Stonechat and Crow. As for the Jack Snipe, the first two pics definitely aren't but assuming they are showing different birds, then the third might be, as the bill looks much shorter.
    Your Ruddy Darter is in fact a Common but I have to say it's easy to confuse them in this case, because it has darkened with age.


    Nige   Flickr

  • I'll leave the experts to look for your Jack snipe PB but admire your photos, the spider's web is magical and the male and female deer are fabulous among the grass with the light just right. The Gadwall is good and the Lapwing just terrific, wonderful colours. Looking forward to more of your days out:-)

    Lot to learn

  • As Hazel and Nigel commented, a gorgeous set, PB; thanks for posting and I, too, look forward to day 3. Good luck with avoiding any chores tomorrow. The spider webs are beautiful, especially when highlighted with tiny drops of water. Love the pale-coloured 'lower lips' on the deer. Presumably they are Arne's resident Sika deer? We were there earlier in the year and saw a couple of small, possibly juvenile deer who were white but we never asked anyone about them. Gadwalls are fabulously feathered; I never tire of seeing them or photos of them.

    Kind regards, 


  • Nice selection of shots. I agree with previous ID's, female Stonechat, Carrion Crow and Snipe.

    My bird photos HERE

  • Thanks all for the comments, and helpful ID's.... at least I appear to have most of the waders right this time (or at least, no one has corrected me :o) )

    Nige, they are different birds, sorry, I should have said. Pics were taken 20 odd minutes apart, and the 1st bird had flown in the opposite direction to the way I was walking. Any thoughts on the 2nd dragonfly? Had a closer look this morning (Mrs PB came in from work before I'd finished post dare she!) and am thinking could be migrant hawker?

    I'm looking forward to day 3 of 4 too, but I think Mrs PB may have sussed I'm off, and also weather doesn't look so fine...but we shall see :o)

  • In reply to Gardenbirder:

    Yes, Ann, they are the sika
    Mini fact about them:
    In Dorset they were brought to Brownsea Island in the 1890s. Being good swimmers some escaped to start populations on the mainland.
  • More brilliant photos PB.

    While out last Sunday (yes, I managed to make the escape), I saw what looked like an Emperor dragon and later on, possibly a darter, but the light was too poor to try and grab a piccie.


    Flickr Peak Rambler

  • Interesting you say the snipe are all different birds and agree with Nige that the 3rd pic of a Snipe does look like it has a shorter bill than the other two and therefore may be a Jack Snipe; the main way I can tell the difference when I see one is by watching them move as Jack Snipe tend to bounce along on springs much like a grey wagtail moves !


    Regards, Hazel 

    "Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again" 

  • Thanks Mike.... don't let bad light stop you, someone on here will almost always work out what it is :o)

    Hazel, sorry, I didn't explain properly, the 1st two are the same bird, I took 9 shots over 15 seconds (although 3 were of a cormorant on the bank and it happened to be in them lol) and 2 shots 25 minutes later of the 2nd bird, but the bill is definitely much shorter on the 2nd