Thursday, 10 April 2014

Arne Nature Reserve + Dancing Ledge



Date: 8th April 2014 - All Day

Location:  Arne Nature Reserve + Dancing Ledge - Poole
Observation:  Our first visit to Arne Nature Reserve, was a good one! Not as much wildlife as expected, but a lovely walk none the less! Just outside the car park, a fox was up on the hill, and stopped for a few minutes to allow us to take some pictures before running off over the hill. Nothing new walking around to the first hide, just the usual suspects, not much from the hide either, one Curlew which flew off a few minutes later and a couple of gulls and Shelduck, until we looked down in front the hide, was 9 Sika Deer, all feeding on the Gorse and grass, was a nice surprise! Walked along the beach at Arne, highlights there was a fishing Little Egret and 2 fly-over Brent Geese. Back up on the hill were 4 more Sika Deer, and MASSIVE Wood Ant nests! We stopped for a few minutes overlooking a field with Gorse in (hoping to see the Dartford) no luck there but watched 3 tree-creepers within reaching distance collecting nesting material and building there nest, which was nice, very cute little birds! Our last chance to see the Dartford was up on the Moorland Route, we done the 45-minute circular route, with no luck at all, but did see a pair of Stonechats, by the Spider pond, sat there hoping they would come closer but just got further and further away! Typical! We moved onto Dancing Ledge, but down the road form the Car Park, sat on a dead tree was a Osprey, with a huge fish, we managed to stop the van, get our camera stuff and walk towards him hiding in the trees, and he flew off just as we lifted our cameras to take a picture!! Closest we've every been to one! Dancing Ledge is the place to see nesting puffins etc, this time of year, but all we seen was nesting Herring Gulls a family of Rock Pipits and a fly-past Shag, but we did burn quite a few calories walking back up the cliff, so wasn't a total loss!
Weather:  Sunny, Warm, Some Wind
Other Species: Kestrel, Buzzard, Stonechat, Treecreeper, Curlew, Avocet, Shelduck, Black-Headed Gull, Goldfinch, Brent Goose, Little Egret, Meadow Pipit, Osprey, Rock Pipit, Herring Gull, Shag, 

Extras: Grey Squirrel, Fox, Sika Deer, Wood Ants