Joe Stockwell

My name is Joe Stockwell and welcome to my birdwatching in South Dorset blog, among various interesting jobs I worked at Portland Bird observatory for the seasons 2013/14 and the Beautiful RSPB Arne for a year 15/16 but now onto my next venture. I'm now pursuing a part time career guiding in Dorset.

Starting off early I was given a pair of binoculars at the age of 2, a bird book came along too and the passion was born, sadly I didn't really get any better until about the age of 12 when we started holidaying abroad, it was still a slow process and that showed with entries in old notebooks like Desert Wheatear and Red-breasted Flycatcher in northern France in August!? Something triggered at the age of 16 though and all the info I kept filling my head with began to stick and my birding was becoming much more pleasurable and reliable! Visiting Portland from 18 I developed a love for Dorset and particularly the Island and was very fortunate enough to be offered a job in 2013, my birding had gone from strength to strength and I was now doing it for a living, the dream right there!

A few mishaps saw me leave Portland, baking bread and then heading off to the RSPB, In that time though I've managed to get engaged, that one was high on the priority list even when I was at PBO, I must thank Frances for putting up with the amount of time I spend in the field too! That then brings me to where I am now, my contract with the RSPB ended at the end of March 2016 so I decided to go about things myself! (along with some proper work too I might add) To try and position myself where I'd like to be in the future, I've set up a small guiding business here in Dorset, it's early days for me so far but don't let that put you off, I've a lot of experience and we could see a lot of birds!


In search of a singing Red-backed Shrike (top) and moments after scoring an Adult Lammergier (bottom) French Pyrenees 2015 - Back for Autumn migration in 2017 and I hope to one day lead a couple of tours there!