This is a great time to visit Brand’s Bay, the arm of Poole Harbour bordered by the Studland Peninsula and Greenlands Farm, where the numbers of wintering waders and ducks are at their peak. A fascinating part of birdwatching here is the change through the day as the rhythm of the tides affects the numbers, species and behaviour of the birds present. At low tide waders search for food, probing the soft mud with long bills to capture ragworms, lugworms, shrimps, clams and mud snails. As the tide flows in, the birds are forced to move closer to the shore and this is a good time to visit the hide. Eventually the waders are forced to leave the mudflats to roost on the small islands or surrounding marshland. Then the grebes and diving ducks move in, disappearing underwater to pursue small fish and crustaceans.