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Ashford Strand – Taw Estuary
The single Ruff was still present this morning foraging in the same location amongst 75 Dunlin.
Tamar estuary / Ernesettle
This morning around the estuary, 31 Avocet, 7 Great crested Grebe, 1 Little Grebe, Wigeon, Teal, 25+ Redwing, and a female Bullfinch. 13 Snipe on Ernesettle creek.
Clovelly Lake this morning.
6 Goosander 2m 4f, 3 Grey Heron, 1 Kestrel, 1 Tawny Owl calling, 6 Moorhen, 7 Collared Dove.
Exminster and Powderham Marshes yesterday
Mixed flocks of thrushes and buntings at Powderham, plus a bonus green woodpecker and snipe startled from the path.
Exminster very quiet, but barn owl seen briefly behind the Lion’s Rest estate.
Barnstaple to Ashford.
Upwards of 60 Brent Geese, 5 Blacktailed Godwits 2 Grey Plover.1 Kingfisher 2 Snipe,about 30 Dunlin,about 20 Lapwing,1 Bullfinch, 3 Common Sandpiper and small amounts of Longtailed Tits, Goldfinch and Redwing.
West Charleton Marsh & South Huish Marsh
West Charleton: 150 Golden Plover, 24 Dunlin, 12 Brent Geese, 3 Grey Plover, 10 Chiffchaff, 2 Firecrest.
South Huish: 6 Brent Geese, 50+ Snipe, 6 Water Pipit.
Yesterday afternoon on Cholwichtown Lake: Goldeneye f, 1, Teal 1, Tufted Ducks 8, Dabchicks 2, overfly of 2 Ravens
Lower Tamar Lake
Late for yesterday Lower Tamar Lake.
38 Goosander 10 m 28f (15:15), 1m Gadwall, 4 Wigeon 4m 2f, 8 Coot, 1 Little Egret, 1 Grey Heron, 7 Teal.
This morning at Lower Tamar Lake.
32 Goosander 8m 24f (12:00), 3 Shoveler 2m 1f, 1m Gadwall, 7 Coot, 1 Little Grebe, 14 Tufted Duck 10m 4f, 1 Willow Tit, 4 Marsh Tit, 1 Grey Heron.
Snowbunting’s – Northam Burrows
Two Snowbunting’s seen near the 7th Tee this morning.
Cranbrook Garden – Black Redstart
Black Redstart back in my garden after an absence of a week. It stayed until it was chased away by a male blackbird.
Plym Estuary & Saltram
During a walk this morning: Dipper, Kingfisher, Siskin, 1+ Grey Wagtail, 2+ Common Sandpipers, 2 Snipe, 2 Little Grebes, Red-crested Pochard (female), c50 Wigeon & a redhead Goosander.
Black redstart pair, Plymouth Hoe
Female spotted first, in front of the apartments above the coffee shack. Then the pair, m & f, on the rocks between coffee shack and wet wok.
Fingle Bridge circular
Fingle Bridge Circular walk from Fingle Bridge to Castle Drogo to the Teign Gorge showed at least 4 goldcrests at different sites, mixture of tits ,2 Buzzards and a smart male Goosander. Great walk.
Barnstaple – Isley
Walked the railway down and back. First birds of note were a pair of Goosanders upstream from Fremington Quay. Shortly after, started to scan Saltpill Pond, when the Teal got agitated and several Snipe took flight. Looked up to see a juv/f Hen Harrier passing over, heading W. Continued, hoping it would be hunting Home Farm Marsh. Instead, first bird seen was a female Marsh Harrier, quartering the field in front of the viewing screens. First two-Harrier day for a long time. On the way back, saw one Ibis in Fremington Creek, but no Spot. Red. On Penhill Marsh were 250+ Brents, and on the sandbanks beyond 400+ Golden Plovers.
Almost certain I saw the merlin that was seen at the Skern recently flying fast and chasing small birds over Braunton marsh. Also 5 snipe at Wrafton pond, 1 redwing nearby. A good morning 18 species seen!
Plym Estuary & Saltram
A late afternoon visit in fine conditions, produced: Great Crested & Little Grebes, 2 Goosanders (1 drake), Red-breasted Merganser (drake), 29+ Wigeon, 16 Snipe, 27+ Turnstones, 471 Dunlins, Common Sandpiper, Kingfisher, Grey Wagtail, Chiffchaff & at least 1 Firecrest.
Walk to Turf and back along Station Road and the canal this morning. Frozen fields and pools appear to have moved most of the wildfowl away from the site. Lapwing and Canada geese were the most abundant species with a few small flocks of teal and wigeon. A female marsh harrier was constantly quartering the ground near the lagoon and disturbed several snipe.
On the canal sides were at least 3 chiffchaffs, 2 Cettis warblers and 2 song thrushes. On the canal (not frozen) were a male tufted duck, and single coot and moorhen.
Slapton Sands & Beesands
No sign of the Laughing Gull but great day for divers: 7 Great Northern Divers, 2 Red-throated Divers, Black-throated Diver. Also: Great White Egret, c.70 Common Scoters, 4 Med Gulls, 17 Common Gulls, many Razorbills on sea.
Blackmore Gate and Croyde.
- Overhead at Blackmore Gate large flock of Golden Plovers. Checking out the Larks at Croyde and nice to see flock of about 50 in the corner of grass field top of Baggy.
3 Eider present approx 700 metres from observation point. Photo taken through telescope. No sign of the female Common Scoters.