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Ruff – North side of Taw Estuary
The Ruff was present again this morning.
Fremington Pill to Barnstaple
100+Teal at the Pill, Redshank, Black and Bar -tailed Godwit, Greenshank, Curlew and single Glossy Ibis. Continuing from Fremington along Tarka Trail to Barnstaple encountered flocks of Lapwing, Little Eagret, Starling, Shellduck ,Oystercatcher.
Several Turnstones feeding on rocks on the edge of the Breakwater 2 Cormorants feeding in the water close by.
Lower Tamar Lake
Highlights: Whooper Swan (3) – flew out at approx. 07:10; Willow Tit, Marsh Tit, Great Spotted Woodpecker (2) drumming; Tawny Owl (2 I think) calling.
No sign of the recent male Black Redstart this morning along the beach at Wembury but the wintering Water Pipit showed very well along with a Grey Wagtail, a pair of Stonechat and 4 Chiffchaff, 1 of which was pale and brown toned compared to the yellowy green of the other 3. A Whimbrel roosting at The Point on the high tide was a surprise. A Firecrest briefly in a village garden
Hawfinch seen at West Town Farm Ide at 0830hrs this morning
Plym Estuary & Saltram
On this morning’s frosty high tide: Grey Plover, 8 Greenshanks, 7 Snipe, Common Sandpiper, 15 Turnstones, 5 Goosanders (2 drakes), 2 drake Red-breasted Mergansers, 37 Wigeon, Grey Wagtail, Siskin (male) & a Great Spotted Woodpecker.
Escot Park – Goosanders
Yesterday morning 7 Goosanders (2 drakes) graced the lake in Escot Park. The redheads were still present at 1100hrs but the drakes were seen to depart.
Water Rail and Spoonbill, Bowling Green Marsh, Topsham
Water Rail, Spoonbill and Snipe amongst other species at Bowling Green Marsh 06/02/2023 1.00pm
Late afternoon on Instow Beach where there were small flocks of Linnets, Goldfinches and Oystercatchers a few Pied Wagtails, Turnstones and Wigeon, two Curlew, Great crested grebes & Little Egret and one Grey Plover and Rock pipit.
Water Rail, Fluxton, Ottery St Mary
A water rail showed briefly on the east bank of the Otter between OSM & Fluxton. First I have seen here in over 10 years. Also a goosander above the weir, and 2 kingfishers on the river. Still plenty of fieldfares and redwings around, a GSW drumming and 3 mistle thrushes on the cricket pitch capped a lovely early spring afternoon walk.
A mid-afternoon walk from the white house to Crow Point, at low tide, was fairly quiet with 14 ringed plover, 1 dunlin, lots of oystercatchers on the opposite shore, several little egrets, 1 great crested grebe, a scattering of curlew, but finally a peregrine flew in and sat about 50 yards away on a large piece of driftwood. It posed for a while before swooping away low over the water and grabbing what I can only assume was a fish, as the water looked too deep at that point for small waders.
A pair of Goldcrests in Runnymede Gardens, Black Redstart (Bath House area).
Plym Estuary & Saltram
In beautiful, sunny weather today: 2 Firecrests, a flock of 7 Bullfinches (3 males), Green Woodpecker, 9 Goosanders (4 drakes), 2 Red-breasted Mergansers (drakes), 30+ Wigeon, 2 Little Grebes, 49 Common Gulls, Common Sandpiper, 24 Turnstones & 10 Roe Deer.
Lower Tamar Lake
Lower Tamar Lake this morning.
3 Whooper Swans (flew out at 07:00), 21 Goosander 4m 17f at (07:25), 2 Great Crested Grebe, 30 Tufted ducks, 22m 8f, 7 Coot, 5 Willow Tit, 2 Marsh Tit, 3 Nuthatch, 4 Long-tailed Tit, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 1 Tawney Owl calling.
Note: the car park and footpath are now open.
Two Dozen Teal, Brixton
Feeding on mud at head of creek at low tide, Brixton, near Plymouth, SX554510
Late post from yesterday. Following slurry spreading, as the sun came up and moon went down 4 buzzards feeding in one of fields behind the house including 2 strikingly coloured cream individuals puffed up against the cold. These were soon harried out of it by carrion crows and then quite incredible views during the morning in terms of sheer number of birds. Gulls – black headed, herring and lesser black backed, very difficult to count as they swirled around field to field but perhaps 2000 – 3000 with starling murmarations in amonsgt them. Interestingly not a rook to be seen in amongst the corvids. In the afternoon the starlings moved to fields in front of the house stopping off in the trees, quite amazing sounds of singing and wings. On/under the feeders a smart male yellowhammer with the chaffinches and house sparrows and 5 tit species including 2 marsh tits and late on several long tailed tits that returned this morning. Counted 11 on the fat balls with just enough room for a single blue tit. Earlier in the week 1 possibly 2 noisy mistle thrushes in the garden.
Exe Estuary cruise 5th February
A beautiful sunny day and another excellent Stuart Line cruise. The highlights included Great Northern Diver near Cockwood, Kingfisher on a wreck near Starcross, 100+ Pintail around the mouth of the Clyst, thousands of Black-headed Gulls, a dozen or more each of Great Crested Grebe and Red-breasted Merganser, and Spotted Redshank, Marsh Harrier and 1000+ each of Lapwing and Golden Plover at Topsham. The three young Harbour (Common) Seals were hauled out on a sandbank, minus the adult present in previous days.
South Devon relief road
Merlin spotted on overhead wires over the South Devon relief road about 11.30 am today.