If you would like to read my Dorset nature notes about any of these featured species or sites please click on the post title

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I have been interested in nature for most of my life but since I retired I spend as much time as I can exploring the nature reserves and wildlife hotspots of my adopted home, Dorset in southern England. Whilst out I record what I see and take snaps where I can (I am no photographer!) and that forms the basis of my Nature of Dorset website. When I find something new I like to research it and write about it in my nature notes, it is how I learn and hopefully you might find my notes helpful as well!

This website is for the people of Dorset interested in wildlife and for people from elsewhere interested in the wildlife of Dorset!

23 January, 2014

Pee-wit, green plover or lapwing?

It's not so many years ago that the lapwing (Vanellus vanellus) could be seen in spring over farmland across Dorset displaying with its wonderful 'swooping' flight and amazing electronic 'pee-wit' sound. Sadly, as a breeding bird in southern England, it now seems quite rare so it is always good to welcome them back as they come south to spend the winter with many other
wading birds.
In winter they can be seen on wet farm fields or around scrapes and hollows in Poole and Christchurch harbours or at Radipole/Lodmore in Weymouth. The often occur in quite large flocks and when they take flight they are quite distinctive because of their 'lapping winged' style! That may sound odd but I am sure you know what I mean if you have seen it.
The lapwing will always be a favourite of mine as one of my earliest memories is of my dad taking me, on his bike, out into the New Forest to see these birds. They were quite common in 'the Forest' back in the early 1950's. He called them pee-wits, the picture book of birds I had called them green plover but today the common name seems to have standardised on lapwing.
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