Devon Bird Sightings

2018 Devon Bird Report - update

The 2018 Devon Bird Report is now with the printers and delivery should be in the first half of March. Apologies for the delay.

Posted February 21st at 9:29 am by Mike Daniels in General Birding

Your 2019 sightings

Happy New Year

Many thanks to all observers that have already submitted their records for 2019, both through Birdtrack and Devon Birds. This is much appreciated.

For other records please could observers submit their sightings by 31st January.

Guidelines and links to recording forms can be found here.

Please send your records to Karen Sims and any descriptions to Kevin Rylands

Best wishes and good birding for 2020.

Posted January 10th at 10:53 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Sightings Page Guidelines

We welcome contributions from Devon Birds members and the general public. Please follow the guidelines on this page if you have something you would like to post on the blog, remembering to use the relevant subject.

For help with ID email photos to

Posted January 8th at 9:12 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Dawlish Warren

Continued erosion at Dawlish Warren means visitors are reminded to take extra care when visiting. Access along the site, to and from the bird hide and Warren Point, is via the beach only, with a risk of being cut off for a period either side of high water! Further information is available on the Teignbridge District Council website.

Posted November 9th, 2018 at 11:08 am by Mike Daniels in General Birding


If you follow our Blog but are not currently a member of Devon Birds please consider joining Devon Birds to help us with the upkeep of running the website and this service as well as our valuable conservation work .

Posted October 10th, 2016 at 9:14 am by George & Julia Harris in General Birding

Tuesday 25th February 2020

Taw Estuary

Single Spoonbill foraging on the estuary late afternoon.

The Wigeon are feeding up ready for their departure to their breeding grounds in the spring.

Posted 35 minutes ago by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

Upper and Lower Tamar Lake

The Lower Lake this morning.

36 Goosander 07:15

Upper Lake.

4 Ring-necked Duck 3m 1f, 8 Great Crested Grebe, 56 Canada, 1m Tufted Duck, 11 Mallard, 3 Cormorants, 27 Lesser Black-backed Gulls.

Posted 1:19 pm by Rod Mudge in General Birding

Underwood, Plympton

The Black Redstart is still making daily visits to our garden and to the south side of the turning circle at the end of Hill Close, but only in the mornings up to c.13:00 hours.

Posted 8:57 am by Jason Smart in General Birding

Monday 24th February 2020


On Lundy today. 

1st Winter Glaucous Gull
1st Winter Glaucous Gull

Posted yesterday at 9:57 pm by Martin Thorne in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts


A rather sad looking Chiffchaff was hunting insects in the reserve this morning. Heard it call but no song yet - not surprised really.  3 Little Egrets out in the surrounding fields.

Water levels making it easy to produce a slippery mud bath everywhere.

Forgot to mention that a Water Rail was singing in the reserve yesterday - NOT just the squeal!

Posted yesterday at 7:20 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Crossbills and Bramblings at Haldon

20+ bramblings amongst a large mixed flock foraging alongside the Chudleigh (Old Exeter) road from Haldon car-park this afternoon, including a couple of almost full summer plumage males. Also a group of c10 crossbills flew into bare trees generally south of the car park.

Posted yesterday at 3:56 pm by Mark Brandon in General Birding

East Devon Branch AGM

Further to my recent post concerning the East Devon Branch indoor meeting and AGM I must apologise for giving the incorrect information.  The meeting will be held at 19.30 on THURSDAY 5 March and not as I stated 'Monday' 5th!  Thanks.

Posted yesterday at 2:20 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in General Birding

Roadford Lake

Scaup seen from the hide this afternoon. No sign of the snow goose or barnacle goose. Several male and female goldeneye viewed from the road looking north to the end of the reservoir. 

Posted yesterday at 7:35 am by Chris Baines in General Birding

Sunday 23rd February 2020

Wrafton pond

In the short spells between each group of children who came down to the pond to feed  the ducks and gulls I managed to capture some photos of male Pochard, female Goldeneye, Gadwall and some Snipe.

M/F GadwallTwo of the three Male Pochard that were on the pond on SundayTwo of six Snipe
M/F Gadwall                                 Two  Male Pochard                             Two of six Snipe

Posted February 23rd at 11:26 pm by Martin Bennett in General Birding

Willand + Broadhembury

River Culm, Willand: 70 little egret, 3 cattle egret, in large field before Bradfield corner, 4.00-4.15pm.

North Hill, Broadhembury: flock of c.170-200 linnet by gorse patch at edge of Gliding Club field, 5.00pm.  

Posted February 23rd at 10:05 pm by James Morrison in General Birding

stuartline birding Cruise 23rd February 2020

Yet another great Cruise this afternoon with several highlights unfolding as we made our way up towards Topsham. Everyone was invited to find the Slavonian Grebe around the Cockwood area but the bird was found further towards Starcross where it was fishing with a pair of Red Breasted Mergansers a pair of Great Crested Grebe and two female and a male Golden Eye, what a great little sighting. Several Turnstone has also been seen is this area during the last couple of cruises but today the visitors were treated to 120+ Turnstone feeding together a little further north. 6 Greenshank were seen together near the River Kenn. Several Grey Heron were seen at their nesting site on Powderham Estate and the first of the Avocets were seen near the Clyst confluence. Good numbers of Curlew were seen throughout. Another highlight for the visitors, Bar-tailed Godwits were in very good numbers with at least 150+ seen close to the boat in two groups. Great Crested Grebe were seen in both winter and summer plumage. The confirmed Common Seal was on a sandbar near the Clyst confluence and Black-tailed Godwits were first seen in good number with over 300+ and seen all along the channel to Topsham. In the fields at Powderham Marsh 300+ Dark Bellied Brent Geese were seen feeding and on the estuary mud both sides of the channel were good numbers of Dunlin, Knot and Grey Plover. Always fantastic to see the smart little Sanderling, 6+ was seen opposite Turf Lock. On the Exminster side of the channel 300+ Golden Plover were seen roosting. As we entered Topsham waters good numbers of Redshank and again a few Teal were seen on the edge of the river. The final highlight was 100+ Black-tailed Godwit several in their breeding plumage flew very close the boat which is always a privilege to see.

120+ TurnstoneSanderlingBar-tailed Godwit
120+ Turnstone                                   Sanderling                              Bar-tailed Godwit

Posted February 23rd at 7:13 pm by Derek Carter in General Birding

Exe Estuary, Topsham

Along the Exe Estuary at Topsham this afternoon, three Goldeneye (2M&1F) two pairs of Red Breasted Merganser, a pair of Black Swan, numerous Redshank and a few Curlew.

Posted February 23rd at 6:42 pm by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Woodbury fort

A male brambling amongst the skittish mobile chaffinch flock inside the fort.

Posted February 23rd at 6:34 pm by Dave scott in General Birding

Exe Estuary cruise 22 February

The Slavonian Grebe was close to 3 Goldeneye (1 drake) and several Red-breasted Mergansers and Great Crested Grebes off Cockwood. Several Greenshanks and Avocets were around Powderham and 30+ Pintail off Lympstone. Masses of Black-tailed Godwits (some getting breeding plumage) and 15 Ringed Plovers were on the mud at Turf, and c800 Golden Plover roosting nearby. Grey Plovers, Knots and a surprising number of Sanderlings (10-15?) were seen on the way to Topsham, with masses of Dunlin, Redshank and both godwits and a fair scattering of Avocets (100+?) for good measure. A Harbour Seal was hauled out near Lympstone and a Grey Seal likewise off Dawlish Warren.

Posted February 23rd at 11:17 am by Dave Smallshire in General Birding

Saturday 22nd February 2020

Freminton Pill

Today is a first for me, a or the Fremington Glossy Ibis roosting with six Little Egrets in a tree at the head of the Pill. Poor quality photo taken in heavy drizzle. Glossy Ibis in bottom left corner of the photo.

Little Egret and Glossy Ibis
Little Egret and Glossy Ibis

Posted February 22nd at 9:06 pm by Martin Bennett in General Birding

Plymouth Parakeets

From 5.25pm this evening 45 plus Ring Necked Parakeets flew into their roost trees along Saltash Road opposite the station car park-much to the delight of some football fans after the Argyle match today. One blue morph seen plus hybrids.

Posted February 22nd at 7:24 pm by Tony Marchese in General Birding


Arriving at Crow point mid morning there were a number of curlew in the fields,  and a kestral on the hunt. Along the shoreline there were dunlin, oystercatchers, cormorant shelduck and a redshank. As it was low tide in the centre of the estuary were a couple of little egret. 

Curlew                              redshank                                                         Kestrel

Posted February 22nd at 5:42 pm by Philip worth in General Birding


Synchronised Goosander roost count at dawn on 21 Feb at five Dartmoor reservoirs produced a total of 55 (including 22 ad males). This was slightly up on previous totals this winter, but reflects a decline in the number now roosting on Dartmoor reservoirs which peaked at 119 in 2010/11. The 55 comprised 24 at Avon Dam, four at Burrator and Meldon, 11 at Fernworthy and 12 at Venford. All gone by 0730. Earlier in the month, 125 were found roosting on non-Dartmoor sites.

Posted February 22nd at 9:57 am by Peter Reay in General Birding

Friday 21st February 2020

Stuartline birding Cruise 21st February 2020

Today’s Bird cruise was a good one with dry, a bit breezy with glimpses of the sun showing off good numbers of birds seen throughout from the marina to Topsham and back again. Also to please the visitors were two adult Grey Seals seen on the Mussel harvesting vessels and a juvenile Grey Seal on a mudbank opposite the River Clyst confluence further up the estuary. Good numbers of Red Breasted Mergansers were seen throughout the estuary with close-up views near the boat showing off their amazing head plumage. The Slavonian Grebe was on show near Starcross with a small number of Great Crested Grebe in the same area. Several Turnstone were seen to amongst the seaweed and rocky bits between Cockwood and Starcross. Several Greenshank were seen near the River Kenn confluence our first Avocets were seen in this area. Dark Bellied Brent Geese were in good numbers around Starcross with up to 300+ birds seen along this stretch in flight and along the waters edge. 200+ Pintail and Widgeon were seen around Exton and the Clyst Confluence. As we approached Turf Lock several Ringed Plover, a couple of Sanderling, plenty of Grey Plover, Avocets, Dunlin, Redshank, Knot, Bar-tailed Godwit were seen in good numbers on both sides of the channel all the way to Topsham with a mixed flock of Black-tailed and Bar-tailed Godwit were at the waters edge. As we approached Topsham the visitors were treated by 200+ Black-tailed Godwits fly over the boat heading downstream, this is always a great spectacle. On our return back to Exmouth nice flocks of Dunlin, Godwit, Widgeon, Knot and a few Lapwing finished off a great Stuartline bird cruise with the visitors very pleased with their sightings. 

Slavonian Grebe
Slavonian Grebe

Black-tailed Godwit
Black-tailed Godwit

Grey Seal
Grey Seal

Posted February 21st at 8:18 pm by Derek Carter in General Birding

Sparrow Hawk dusk "kill" South Brent

Just on dusk, from the kitchen I noticed a shadow in the garden, a closer look revealed an adult female Sparrow hawk on a "pigeon" kill, the bird continued to feed even once it had become dark.

Very grainy images silly high ISO needed just to get an image.

Posted February 21st at 6:13 pm by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Wrafton Pond

In among a host of Herring and Black-headed Gulls sheltering from the strong breeze, a Mediterranean Gull this afternoon.

Yesterday 7 Canada Geese in the reserve.

Posted February 21st at 4:34 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Exe Estuary 20 February

The highlight of yesterday's Stuart Line birdwatching cruise was the Red-necked Grebe diving with Red-breasted Mergansers near Exmouth Marina, though views were distant. The resident Slavonian Grebe and 3 Goldeneye (1 drake) were off Cockwood, several Great Crested Grebes and Greenshanks were between Starcross and Powderham. Around Turf-Topsham, the mudbanks held 15 Ringed Plovers, c50 each of Grey Plover and Knot, a few Golden Plover and 3 Sanderlings were with Dunlins along the river channel. There were surprisingly good numbers of Bar-tailed Godwits at Topsham. We didn't see the Long-billed Dowitcher, but in the afternoon it was with a couple of Snipe at the railway end of Bowling Green Marsh.


Posted February 21st at 11:36 am by Dave Smallshire in General Birding


A single Mistle Thrush feeding on ground close to Fernworthy Reservoir.

Mistle Thrush
Mistle Thrush

Posted February 21st at 10:31 am by Martin Bennett in General Birding

Thursday 20th February 2020

Shipley ~ South Brent

A late afternoon visit to Shipley, South Brent, small mixed flock of Mistle Thrush and Fieldfare and a single Meadow Pipit.

Around the feeders at home in South Brent three Siskins 3M&1F, four Bullfinch 2M&2F, the "Italian Sparrow" and a slightly leucistic male House Sparrow that I have not noticed here previously. 

Posted February 20th at 5:47 pm by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Underwood, Plympton

The Black Redstart still visiting daily. Also today, a Firecrest briefly - the third or fourth sighting this year, so it is presumably over-wintering somewhere nearby. Why do they last only ever visit our garden when the light is particularly dismal? Couple that with their hyper-activity and there's zero chance of a photo.

Posted February 20th at 8:43 am by Jason Smart in General Birding

Wednesday 19th February 2020

Ideford Common


A lone female Brambling was the first bird to return to the woodland floor area, leaf litter and track immediately north of the car park, after a flock of 60+ Chaffinches had been flushed by a marauding male Sparrowhawk.  The bird was glimpsed again later in the tops of nearby larches but was mobile. 

In the vicinity were 2 GSWs, 3 Siskins, 4 Crossbills (3 males and 1 female), Treecreeper, Nuthatch, male Pheasant and numerous Great, Coal, Blue and LT Tits.  2 Ravens over and a singing Song Thrush, Blackbirds, Dunnock and several Robins completed the wintery cast.   

Posted February 19th at 5:31 pm by Paul Darlington in General Birding

Broadsands, Paignton

A productive visit to Broadsands this morning, in the back car park up to eight Cirl Bunting, three Greenfinch and fifteen plus House Sparrow feeding on the scattered seed.

At the Beach Marsh, at least three possibly four Stonechat, male Cirl Bunting, Greenfinch, a Meadow Pipit, Goldcrest, three separate sighting of both Chiffchaff and Firecrest, a single Siberian Chiffchaff, a Snipe and a Water Rail both deep in the reed cover.

A flyover Heron, on the sea a Great Northern Diver, fly pasts from an Oyster Catcher and three Mallard.

Posted February 19th at 3:43 pm by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Red Breasted Mergansers at Bowcombe Creek

Up to a dozen RBM's at Bowcombe Creek yesterday afternoon. Interesting to see their courtship display.


Posted February 19th at 9:14 am by bob barrow in General Birding

Tuesday 18th February 2020

Lower tamar Lake

This morning while topping up the feeders.

13 Willow Tit, 2 Marsh Tit, 9 Goosander 4m 5f, 4 Long-tailed Tit, 2 Jay.

Posted February 18th at 7:37 pm by Rod Mudge in General Birding

Roadford Reservoir

Short trip to Roadford Lake arriving midday. The male Greater Scaup (the quarry) still present viewed from the road bridge loosely associating with 30+ Tufted Ducks and 60+ Teal. Also 2 female and 1 male Goldeneye (pair seen from the hide, used as respite from torrential rain) 

Record photos



Posted February 18th at 6:12 pm by Tony Marchese in General Birding

18/02/2010 Mouth of Teign Estuary

Two great northern divers close to mouth of Estuary along with shag and two cormorants

Posted February 18th at 2:22 pm by Pete Stevens in General Birding


At least one Siberain Chiffchaff with 4+ collybita Chiffchaffs, 2 Goldcrest & 1 Firecrest still in the marsh behind Broadsands Beach. On the sea 6 Great Northern Divers and 6 Great Crested Grebes but no sign of the Black-necked Grebe that was in Elberry Cove over the weekend.

Posted February 18th at 10:30 am by Mike Langman in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

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