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Six Swan Geese / Greylag hybrids still showing well today. Fields next to the road.
Fulmars have returned to the cliffs above Tunnel Beaches; a couple of Purple Sandpipers working the rocks below Capstone Hill; sizeable flock of Goldfinch feeding on Buddleia seed on “waste” land near museum
Stonechat Turf hotel
Lovely example male Stonecahat on gate between St Clements and Turf Hotel.
Isley Marsh Area
Successful morning around Isley Marsh with the usuals. The highlights being: a Greater Scaup and 2 Spoonbills at Isley Marsh, 3 Eider and a Green-Winged Teal between the 2 jetties at Yelland.
Also took a detour home to see the Black Redstart at the Royal Hotel (Bideford).
Red Kite. 11.20 between teign estuary bridge and Kingskerswell exit.
Minimum of 36 Cattle Egrets in Bowcombe Creek at high tide. Amazing!
Isley Marsh Area
Successful morning with the usuals around Isley Marsh. With the highlights being: a Greater Scaup and 2 Spoonbill at Isley marsh, a Green-Winged Teal and 3 Eider between the 2 jetties at Yelland.
Also took a detour to the Royal Hotel on the way back to see the Black Redstart.
Birds on the estuary and at Blaxton Meadow at high tide this morning included 43 Wigeon, a female Red-crested Pochard, 5 Goosander, 13 Turnstone, 590 Dunlin, 12 Snipe, 132 Redshank and 10 Greenshank. Sixteen Mandarin Ducks were on the duck pond at Saltram. Also of interest were 8 Roe Deer – 2 at Saltram and 6 on Chelson Meadow.
2 dippers in tavistock with another 1 below the sewage works. 3 pairs near the walkham confluence and another 5 singles downstream.
Female goosander there too, plus a few grey wagtails
River Mole Valley
Farmland birds today included 120 Linnet and 100 Chaffinch in the bird mix.Elsewhere 24 Yellowhammer,10 Stock Dove,Marsh Tit, Greenfinch, Bullfinch , Long – tailed tit, 4 Goosander by the river and best of all a Crossbill.
Lower Tamar Lake this morning.
13 Goosanders 5m 8f, 1m Tufted Duck, 2 Cormorants, 6 Coot, 9 Mallard, 7 Long-tailed Tit, 3 Willow Tit, 13 Chaffinch, 1 Tree Creeper, 2 Coal Tit, 3 Robins, 1 Nuthatch.
2 Willow Tit, 2 Robin, 2 Coal Tit.
Straight Point, Sandy Bay
Around 20 Kittiwakes were selecting nest ledges on the cliffs at Straight Point;
Around the Exe
Bradiford Reserve & Taw Estuary
A portion of the flock of Brent Geese landed on the north side of the Taw Estuary to forage for a time this morning before joining the others.
On Bradiford Reserve I counted 42 Black tailed Godwits before the dense drizzle arrived.
Darts Farm Topsham
Following Steve’s post and feedback to Admin managed to get a closer look at supposed bean geese from the ponds at Darts Farm. The geese definitely have partial orange bills, however angular bill and head shape and contrasting front to back of neck suggests swan goose. With the orange so prominent would say swan goose x greylag hybrid. Apologies for rash bean id! Thanks Steve and admin.
I visited Darts Farm this afternoon at 3.20 and saw the 6 grey geese. Thinking they might be Greylags, but didn’t look quite right, I had a closer look. It is my opinion they are Swan Geese. All clearly showing a darker crown, nape and rear neck, in contrast to paler face and front of neck. Although the contrast isn’t as strong as I have seen before, but still clearly there. Of the ones I looked at more closely, they had all black bills, though I didn’t see the bills on all of them. Off course this is a personal opinion, but I have seen many PF/Bean Geese, including both spp of Bean over the years. Birding is a learning process and I am still learning too, but I have seen Swan Geese in recent years too and I am sure this is what they are. Maybe tomorrow may bring a different view.
Bean geese, Darts Farm Topsham
Six bean geese (possibly Tundra) in the fields at Darts Farm Topsham.
Big thanks for the heads up from Andy Chadwick who spotted them go in around 3.30pm. 😀
Two Goldeneyes (male and female) were together just outside the Starcross harbour a short while before low tide this afternoon.
1 greenshank downstream of weir quay (on Devon side)
1 great northern diver upstream of torpoint chain ferries (on Cornish side, but visible from other)
Highlights from the Slapton area today – Male Ring-necked Duck, 3 Great Egret, 7 Cattle Egret, 5 (2m,3f) Goldeneye, 10 Med Gull, Red-throated Diver, 13 Common Scoter. 75 Dunlin & 2 Grey Plover roosting on the beach first thing.