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River Otter – Sand Martins
Walking south from Ottery St Mary’s this morning, I had 2 Sand Martins. Also 3 Goosander, 2 Grey Wagtail, Dipper and Kingfisher.
Bowling Green Marsh
Yesterday: Tufted Ducks, Shoveler, Teal, Pochard, Shelduck, Pintail, Wigeon, Little Grebe, Shelduck, Snipe, Blackwits, Stock Dove, Willow warbler, Sand Martins
Yesterday: Good views of 4 Water Pipits in summer plumage, Chiffchaffs, Cettis Warblers, Greenfinches, Goldfinches, Chaffinches, Wigeon, Shoveler, Teal, Gadwall, Greenshank, Greylag Geese, Canada Geese.
Evening look around: Garganey still on the small scrape. Drake Pochard on Wrafton Pond and still several Chiffchaffs. Walked around Sherpa Marsh and was surrounded by Sand Martins, many flying very low over the ponds. A smart male Wheatear on the embankment opposite the Toll House, and at last a fine Swallow, if briefly.
pair of dippers on river ashburn by main car park 1st I’ve seen there this spring.
Dawlish Countryside Park – Alpine Swifts
Amazingly, despite the windy grey skies and squally heavy showers that had me in and out of the car several times, this morning, 2 Alpine Swifts duly appeared over the woods on Eastdon Ridge and were soon speeding around together, twisting and turning before moving out across Dawlish Countryside Park. Fantastic – now I need to go and dry the camera off!
Visit to the marshes this morning was in time to see the high tide roosts. Birds were well distributed across the marshes with the larger flocks in the centre. Here there were curlew, black-tailed godwit (c250), shelduck (c100) and about a dozen cormorant. Nearer the canal , on the various pools, was one flock of c65 bar-tailed godwits, c30 curlew, 2 lapwing and a single avocet.
Duck numbers quite low and only 3 brent geese seen.
In Station Road and on the canal bank there were at least 4 chiffchaffs singing and another flock of 4 together. clearly migrants and the only migrants seen before the rain set in.
Wrafton scrape & Pond
Male Garganey still present late aft on the smaller scrape.
Sand Martins flying low over the pond & several Chiffchaff foraging in the reed bed & surrounding vegetation. Male Pochard still present & 2 Cettis calling from opposite sides of the pond
A single Purple Sandpiper below Windy Corner; Rock Pipits seemingly staking out territories; pair of Fulmar settled overlooking Tunnel Beaches
WHEATEAR STADDON HEIGHTS
5 WHEATEAR AT STADDON HEIGHTS
Swallow in Okehampton
Lone Swallow flying North over Okehampton at 1510.
Valley of Rocks . Lynton.
3 Wheatear, 1Chiffchaff, 2 pairs Stonechats, about 10 Meadow Pipits, and 1 Small Tortoiseshell Butterfly.
Wrafton Scrape and Sherpa Marsh
Drake Garganey feeding on nearside of large scrape with plenty of Teal. A few Sand Martins feeding overhead.
Three Gadwall on pond with ~30-40 Sand Martins overhead, Chiffchaff and Goldcrest in trees to left of viewing platform and calling Cetti’s Warbler
Few species on grazing marsh bar abundance of Sand Martins, one Cetti’s Warbler along the toll road ditch.
Few Shelduck and Oystercatcher pairs out on the mudflats, large flock of Redshanks at the edge of the sea wall breach.
Little Ringed Plover. Northam Burrows/Skern
Litte Ringed Plover feeding late afternoon by the pool to the left of the Skern toll road.
Willand – wet meadow by River Culm, LHS of the road when heading towards Bradfield
53 Little Egrets including 3 Cattle Egrets ranging over the grassed field at 3pm 21 March
Alpine Swifts at Shaldon and South Fort Berry Head
Alpine Swifts seen at Shaldon and at the South Fort on Berry Head today. The bird at Berry head was on view over the main Carpark and between the Fort and the Caravan park looking west. Fantastic low passes along this area and over the field. Wheatear and Willow Warbler seen towards the Cafe and two Porpoise seen fishing off Berry Head along with 20 Gannet.
No Black-tailed Godwits this morning but oddly the Garganey was back – on the smaller scrape. Some Sand Martins about. 6 Gadwall in the reserve, and a female Canada Goose diving under water and resurfacing about 5 yards away! Walked around Sherpa where a few hundred Sand Martins spent the time flying into the strongish Southerly wind. No other species with them. Returned in the evening to find 117 Black-tailed Godwits and again good numbers of Sand Martins. Drake Pochard and Gadwall on Wrafton Pond.
Plym Estuary & Saltram
Highlights this afternoon were a single Sand Martin dashing west and a 3rd cy Yellow-legged Gull, on Blaxton Meadow before drifting out over the estuary. Otherwise, 7 Snipe, 6 Greenshanks, 33+ Turnstones, 4 Goosanders (2 drakes), Wigeon & a Green Woodpecker.
Alpine swift, c. 0950. 1 Swallow 5 common Dolphin, 2 singing Blackcaps.
Shaldon Alpine swift
Alpine swift finally located after several hours, prolonged views high up above fields at Commons lane (behind Coast View holiday park), til about 2.15pm.