Storm Frank may have let us off easy compared to other parts of the country but it did bring some seabirds closer inshore and great skua, kittiwake, gannet and Sandwich tern were all seen from Studland beach yesterday (30th December). There were also unusually high numbers of great northern divers with ten individuals at various points offshore.
Earlier this week I saw a good variety of birds on a walk from Shell Bay to Knoll Beach that included red-breasted merganser, shag, Brent goose, oystercatcher, ringed plover and sanderling. I especially enjoyed seeing grey plovers foraging for food with their characteristic short bursts of running in between long, watchful pauses.
Finally, the great white egret that has been present for most of the year was seen again in Brand’s Bay – let’s hope it continues its stay into 2016.