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Shoveler in Dorset: what your tweets tell us ...

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  • Another duck that is far more common in winter and recognisable by the large beak and white colouring with rusty sides


     

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Although a breeding species in south eastern England the shoveler is not known as a breeding species here in Dorset; there may be occasional successful broods but as I understand it shoveler breeding in Dorset is a rare occurrence. The shoveler is also migratory and British birds tend to head south into southern Europe and north Africa once breeding is over. Despite this, you will see shoveler in suitable locations in Dorset for much of the year because in winter birds from northern Europe arrive here and replace those that left us. It gives the impression that the shoveler is a resident species but it is a trick of the light! 

The weekly reporting chart of tweets shows continual records of shoveler from week 34 in mid-August right through the winter until week 21 in the following May. Between week 22 and week 33 reports are less frequent but it does show that shoveler are here abouts during the summer even if they are not breeding. Certainly, it seems the bulk of the Dorset birds are incoming winter migrants with numbers much higher after the turn of the year until April than during the rest of the year.

There are reports of shoveler from twenty five Dorset locations to date with Poole Harbour sites in particular being popular. The shoveler likes shallow open water around saltmarsh and this habitat is common at the western end of Poole Harbour as it is too in Christchurch Harbour where shovelers are also frequently seem. The Fleet suits shoveler as does Radipole Lake and Lodmoor. They also occur inland at large lakes such as at Longham and West Moors.

Any sheltered coastal habitat in winter is likely to produce shoveler for the Dorset list accumulator.


 

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This chart shows the number of reports per week for this species where there are reports (see note below):

The intention of this chart is to show which weeks during the year this species is most likely to be seen. See note above about multiple reports of a single specimen!

This chart shows the number of reports per month for this species where there are reports (see note below):

The intention of this chart is to show which months during the year this species is most likely to be seen. Remember that is is the total number of REPORTS; there may be several reports for just one occurrence of the species (that is to say, a number of individuals may have been to see a single specimen of a species).

This chart shows the number of reports for each year for this species where there are reports (see note below):

Contributors to the Nature of Dorset have seen this species at these locations:

Please note that the markers show APPROXIMATE locations of the observation, not exact locations! You can find often find out more information about location by looking at the original tweet. Click on any marker to see the name of the location and then click on the location name to see more details about the site where available.

This chart shows the number of reports per site for this species. Hover over any column to see the site and the number of reports:

Ckick/tap the list icon for an alphabetical list of all the posts in this series from where you can access any that are of interest to you

Name Peter Orchard
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Twitter Screen Name peterorchardnod
Location Wareham, Dorset, UK
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This is a feed of contributions to my main website; the Nature of Dorset. My 'high five' are the five most interesting species from my walks in Dorset somewhere

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