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Monthly Summary Reports

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A summary of each month's nature activity together with a list of species recorded during each month. Click on 'read more' for the full article, the species list and a selection of charts showing the data in graphical form.

Displaying 1 - 12 of 20
  • August 2018

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Wed, 01/08/2018 - 16:18

    Records are currently being colated and a summary will appear here at the end of the month



  • July 2018

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Sun, 01/07/2018 - 11:43

    Records are currently being collected and a summary will appear here at the end of the month.



  • June 2018

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Fri, 01/06/2018 - 13:11

    Records for June are currently being collected and a review will appear here at the end of the month.


  • May 2018

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Tue, 01/05/2018 - 16:13

    Records for May 2018 are currently being accumulated and a summary will appear here at the end of the month

  • April 2018

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Sun, 01/04/2018 - 08:34

    Dire, dead, dismal - some of the words used by Dorset's wildlife tweeters in April! Normally the beginning of the migration season with reports of incoming passage migrants abounding and yet this year little seemed to be happening. There were a couple of 'spikes' in activity but on the whole it was a very quiet month. The abysmal weather obviously did not help but there is concern that there may be a more serious underlying reason for the lack of activity, something which has yet to come to light when the full picture is known perhaps.

  • March 2018

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Thu, 01/03/2018 - 09:44

    March started with county (and the whole country) in the grip of the 'beast from the east!'. Most of Britain had an extensive covering of snow and even down here in the soft south conditions were pretty dire for a couple of days. This not only wrought havoc with the human population but threw many ground feeding birds into panic as they tried to escape the sever conditions by flying further south. For many that came south to Dorset there was bad news, it was not good here either and the only option was to head out to sea. Flocks of thousands of birds were seen flying along the Dorset coast heading west in the hope of finding feeding areas rather than actually venture out in to the unknown.

  • February 2018

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Thu, 01/02/2018 - 08:06

    February was quietly working its way towards spring with some spring-like weather in amongst the usual rainy days and then it all changed! The wind swung round and instead of the normal mild westerlies we get it came in from the east, direct from Siberia. Termed the 'beast from the east' by the popular press it brought sub-zero temperatures for a few days along with the first snowfall in Dorset for a couple of years. This cold snap certainly stirred up the bird activity and also the activity of those who watch them!

  • January 2018

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Mon, 01/01/2018 - 18:38

    Whilst the short, cold days of January are not enough to dampen the enthusiasm of Dorset's nature watchers it can limit their opportunities to get out and about! To be fair, of all the months in the year, January is often the quietest for surprises. Unless there is a dramatic weather event most birds are content to bide their time whilst they sit out the winter. The number of tweeted sighting was at a low point and only twelve species reported could be called really notable.

  • December 2017

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Sat, 02/12/2017 - 07:50

    The dark, damp days of December mean the number of reports from birding enthusiasts takes a down turn! This is some what inevitable, partly because opportunities to get out and about are limited and also because people only tend to report their more interesting sightings and these can be few and far between in mid-winter. That said December 2017 still turned up some notable records, mainly in the gull department. There were records of Bonaparte's gull, ringed-bill gull, Iceland gull, glaucous gull, Sabine's gull and little gull. To many of us these are just sea gulls and it takes the specialists to tell them apart.

  • November 2017

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Wed, 01/11/2017 - 08:19

    If you put some soil in a jar, add water and shake it up you get a clouded, swirling mass! Leave it for a while and gradually the bits will settle and you will have a much clearer picture. It might seem an odd analogy but that is a reflection of October and November in the countryside. In October a lot happens, especially birds movements, and things can seem clouded. It can be difficult to appreciate what is actually happening but in November things settle and you can see the results of the October chaos.


  • October 2017

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Sun, 01/10/2017 - 10:06

    You would be forgiven for thinking that autumn migration is just a mirror image of spring migration; swallows and house martins in in May and out in October. In reality this is far from the case, the two seasons and related bird movements are very different. There are various reasons for this, some simple and some complex. 

  • September 2017

    Submitted by PeterOrchard on Sat, 02/09/2017 - 07:12

    One word sums up September for the keen nature watcher; SANDPIPER! We expect common sandpipers regularly in autumn as they make their way south and a small number of green sandpipers are always likely to be around. Most years a number of curlew sandpipers are likely and so it was this year but the length of time they stayed here was possibly unusual. Wood sandpipers are far from common but could not be classed as rare and a few were about in September to make the count four. However, I do not think anyone expected the other sandpipers that were going to suddenly appear.