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Devon Goosander count
Synchronied Goosander roost count on 12 Nov produced 96 birds including 15 males, four of which still showed signs of moult, Fort-eight were on Dartmoor (top site Venford with 24), and 48 elsewhere (top site Blackhill Quarry with 23). There were no Goosanders roosting at 10 of the 24 sites visited, but seven at Hennock on evening of 11th have been included as they must have roosted somewhere! Thanks to all who took part.
Also on Blaxton Meadow, at least for a while, were single Whimbrel and Grey Plover. On the estuary nearby were single Great Crested and Little Grebes. The female Red-crested Pochard was still on the Saltram duck pond.
I was in the Velator reserve, when a message came through on the Devon Rares site on Instagram. From Tim Jones who reported a Grey Phalarope on the same pond as the Red-necked Phalarope a couple of weeks back. So I tidied up what I was doing and walked the 200 metres to the pond. Like the other one, this one took a while to show, but even at distance it clearly had a stockier bill. Thanks for the heads up Tim!
85 plus Godwits on the scrape, But as usual not much showing in the reserve this late in the day.
Great morning on my own. Shell duck, Dunlin, Oyster Catcher, Redshank, 9 Green shank, Curlew, Little egret, Heron, Wigeon, Kingfisher, 11 Snipe, 1 Turnstone and pleanty of of the usual.
Lower Tamar Lake
Late for yesterday.
Lower Tamar Lake
2 Willow Tits, 2 Marsh Tits,1 Goldcrest, 1m Great Spotted Woodpecker, 5 Great Crested Grebe, 5 Coot, 11 Cormorant.
11:11 – 12:30
Maer Rocks from the lifeboat station: 1 female Eider.
Shelly Beach buildings: 1 male & 2 female Black Redstart.
Stoodleigh near Tiverton
This Kestrel was spotted on a road side pole near Stoodleigh.
Taw Estuary at Ashford Strand
On the high tide around 10:30 there were numerous rafts of duck drifting about, mainly Wigeon but also counted 23 Pintail a fairly even mix of M & F
Mid Devon birds meeting, the reservoir is still very low, with no water at all north of the viaduct, and only a few ducks and geese to see, the walk finished with 31 birds seen,
Morning visit to the marshes began well with 2 cattle egrets with cattle close to the Swan’s Nest pub. On the railway bridge was a flock of long-tailed tits and a goldcrest.
The marshes provided a spectacle of waders and waterfowl, the most I have seen for months. The ducks included wigeon (several hundred), teal, pintail, shoveller and a few mallard. The waders included curlew, black-tailed godwit (c400), dunlin (c80), 2 snipe and a single ruff. The mass of waterfowl was attracting attention from a female peregrine (adult) and 2 marsh harriers. Other raptors included 2 kestrel and a single buzzard. Amongst the waders and ducks were c100 starlings, 5 skylarks and c4 meadow pipit.
At The Turf one common sandpiper, one kingfisher, 7 grey plover and a few redshank. I failed to see the beaver seen earlier by the sluice gates.
Plym Estuary & Saltram
Blaxton Meadow was full of birds again, on this morning’s high tide, including: Grey Plover, 19 Snipe, 8 Greenshanks, Turnstone, Red-breasted Merganser (redhead), 2 Goosanders (drake & redhead), 5 Teal (1 drake), Mediterranean Gull (ad-w) & Kingfisher (male). Elsewhere, Firecrest & Great Spotted Woodpecker.
Merlin around Trowlesworthy paddocks and 1+ Brambling with 30+ Chaffinch in trees around the farm.
Teignmouth Point Car Park
Five, maybe six Great Northern Divers at high tide was the highlight this morning.
Little egrets, Haye farm
Three little egrets in fields with horses at Haye Farm, Plymstock. One in field to west of Haye road and two in field to the east. Showing well.
Glaucous Gull at Exeter Quay still loafing about near the footbridge yesterday
South Brent ~ Black Redstart
A male Black Redstart seen in the church yard at South Brent early this afternoon, Redstart, Mistle Thrush and Song Thrush feeding in the Yew trees.
In addition to Pete’s sightings of today, in between the rain deluges, four redhead Goosanders were being flushed down the river which was in heavy spate.
There’s been a hundred Black-tailed Godwits on the scrape for a few days now (well 98 today) in one count, but good numbers non-the-less. In the reserve this morning, 20 Long-tailed Tits (at least) a Chiffchaff, and later a probable Siberian Chiffchaff.
Plym Estuary & Saltram
Birds are clearly benefitting from Blaxton Meadow’s increased water levels; as well as several hundred commoner waders, today’s sightings there included: Grey Plover, Turnstone (another 14 on the estuary), 11 Snipe, 10 Greenshanks, 2 Common Sandpipers, 2 Shovelers new in, Teal increased to 5 & 16 Wigeon. Also around the patch, 2 Kingfishers, Great Crested & 2 Little Grebes, 3 Red-breasted Mergansers (2 drakes), 4 Fieldfares, Green Woodpecker, 3 Firecrests & 3 Siskins.
3 black redstart, 1m,2f/imm private gardens between Veasy Park and Brownhill Lane