A second half own goal from Stephane Zubar extended Bournemouth's winless run to six games, ensuring the south coast side stay in the bottom four.
Bournemouth incredibly opened the scoring after just 16 seconds, after Wesley Thomas curled home brilliantly from long range. Colchester United rallied in the second half and grabbed a deserved leveller as Zubar, trying to prevent Kayode Odejayi from scoring, only succeeded in turning the ball into his own goal.
Colchester came into the game on the back of just one defeat in five, however six draws from their opening 14 matches, prevented any possible play-off push.
In their last home encounter Colchester trailed inside a minute and history repeated itself as Bournemouth struck after just 16 seconds. Thomas, on loan from Crawley Town, picked up on a loose ball and from distance, curled past Ben Williams in style.
The goal stunned the hosts and it wasn't until the 28th minute they created a chance of note as Anthony Wordsworth blazed over. Odejayi did brilliantly to find Colchester's top scorer, however well when placed he could only put over.
Bournemouth and Wes Fogden in particular blew a chance to double their lead. Marc Pugh did brilliantly to get a cross in, however Fogden's header was weak and Williams saved with ease.
Darryl Flahavan produced a world class save on the stroke of half-time to prevent Ian Henderson from levelling. Wordsworth chipped a teasing ball through, which Henderson did well to get to before the covering Zubar, however his left foot volley was brilliantly repelled by Flahavan.
Bournemouth should have repeated their first half feat in scoring inside the first minute of the half, however inexcusably Thomas headed wide with the goal gaping.
Having been accused of leaving his changes too late in games recently, Ward made two substitutions just five minutes into the second half with Lloyd James and Steven Gillespie entering the fray, with the later a change that the Colchester crowd took well.
Fogden had a goal disallowed mid way through the second half after the midfielder was adjudged to have been in an offside position as he finished from close range after an Adam Barret knock down.
Sub Gillespie was perhaps fortunate not to avoid a straight red card as his over the top challenge was only deemed worthy of a yellow card.
Moments later Gillespie made the most of his redemption by creating the equaliser. Gillespie did brilliantly to win the ball from Stephen Purches and his squared ball was converted into his own goal by the luckless Zubar.
Neither side threatened a late winner as both clubs had to settle for a point in a drab affair.