Ben Thornes

Poole Harbour birdlife – the focus of new charity

Wednesday 16th July 2014

The new ‘Birds of Poole Harbour’ environmental education charity was set up and founded by local naturalist Paul Morton with the aim of boosting bird conservation, preservation and monitoring right across the internationally important site. The new charity links up and works with the larger NGO’s such as the RSPB, Dorset Wildlife Trust and National Trust as well as showcasing the harbour’s birdlife through a range of public events and scientific studies. ‘BoPH’ works with and educates local residents and school children as well as visitors to the area, teaching them how birds of many species use the harbour’s varied and complex ecosystems.

They run a number of projects, which include the critically acclaimed School Birdboat Project with the Poole local RSPB group. This project see’s the charity take out over 1300 pupils each winter from local schools around the harbour on specially commissioned boats showing and highlighting the importance of the harbour’s incredible range of habitats. The charity also commissions scientific studies to take place that are placed for free on the ‘BoPH’ website once completed. These have included detailed Water Rail, gull roost and wader surveys with a Woodcock population survey currently taking place. The charity also hosts a wide and varied range of public events throughout the year, focusing on different areas of the harbour and the species that live there as well as regular sightings blogs, local news and local ringing information. The charities founder Paul Morton says…

“I’ve been fascinated with the ecology of Poole Harbour since I was six and was addicted to birds by the time I was 10! I’m thrilled we’ve been able to get the charity set up and now have the opportunity to tell the entire story of Poole Harbour and it’s birdlife.”

The charity’s website guides you around the harbour with a useful interactive map which promotes some of the best places to watch birds and tells you what you could see and when.

Visit the website here – birdsofpooleharbour.co.uk

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