My first full day on a Camp Site close to Corfe Castle on the Isle of Purbeck naturally meant a day at RSPB Arne.

Although I’d been there last year, it was just half a day and upon my return I noticed I didn’t really walk round ‘the best bits’.


Spoonbills at Arne
Some of the Spoonbills

One bird I’ve always missed at Dungeness is the Spoonbill. Arne disappoint, I saw 27 grouped togther on the islands north east of the Hide facing Poole Harbour.

In fact, the day before there were over 70 apparently, but I was quite happy with my lot !

Curlew at Arne

White Fungi at Arne
White Fungi – Species I know not

Visions of the Sahara !

From this Hide I spotted a distant Kingfisher but too far away to focus, some Redshanks, Curlews and Lapwings were about but not many others.
This was probably due to the fact that it was the day when Sahara Dust along with ash from the Spanish Land Fires was blowing up from the south which brought about a coloured sky not too far amiss from the Full Eclipse a few years ago.
It was certainly very quiet.

Sahara-Dust-over-Arne-in-Dorset    Heath and Woodland Arne
Two scenes showing the strange light given out by the dust clouds

The RSPB have done great works at Arne and although the car park may appear full, walking around the various tracks you don’t seem to see an awful lot of people.
You can see why the BBC presented Springwatch from there, the diversity of heath, reed, coast, farmland, coast and woodland is unique, as are the approach roads to it.


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