Devon Bird Sightings

Dawlish Warren

Please take extra care when visiting Dawlish Warren. We have been informed that due to the recent bad weather there has been significant erosion from Groyne 10 eastwards. This means that access along the site, to and from Warren Point (and the bird hide) will be via the beach only, with a risk of being cut off for a period either side of high water! Signs have been put up to alert people to the hazards, but people need to be aware that access routes that they have become used to may not be available and they need to exercise extreme caution,  with the possibility of being cut off by the tide, and people are strongly urged not to try climbing the sand cliffs. Further information is available on the Teignbridge District Council website.

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


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

Sightings Page Changes

Acting on comments to Devon Birds some changes have been made to this page. To the right of this header post you'll see there are now several subjects for you to choose to read and post on. Just click your chosen subject and use as previously.

Please be careful not to post under the wrong subject. If you do, you can still easily go back to edit and change the subject yourself so it appears on the right page.

Please try and keep posts short, particularly in the Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts page. Photographs are still very welcome.  

For help with ID email photos to

Posted June 30th, 2016 at 9:24 pm by George & Julia Harris in General Birding

Monday 18th March 2019


On the sea: 2 Red-necked Grebes, 6 Great Crested Grebes - otherwise very quiet.

Posted yesterday at 9:48 pm by Mike Langman in General Birding

Hembury Woods

Nice views of a Woodcock and a vocal Green Woodpecker, late afternoon.

Posted yesterday at 8:48 pm by Andy Smith in General Birding

Horsey Island

Late aft - 1 smart male Wheatear briefly on the top of the inner Great Bank by the Toll Road + 63 Black tailed Godwits foraging with a few in smart summer plumage..

Posted yesterday at 6:57 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

Northbrook, - Matford marshes

Very quiet on the Northbrook today - council still working along the path. Kingfisher (pictured) just down from Salmon Pool. Another Kingfisher flew through the back pond at Matford Marshes, also there a Water Rail and Gadwall. No sign of any Cattle Egret behind the storage units today.

Kingfisher Kingfisher Gadwall
Kingfisher                      Kingfisher                                              Gadwall

Posted yesterday at 5:22 pm by Martin Rooney in General Birding

Lower Tamar Lake

c20 Sand Martin this morning.

Posted yesterday at 2:30 pm by Rod Mudge in General Birding


First Wheatear, on edge of the airfield at East Soar and a migrant flock of 30 Meadow Pipits above Soar Mill Cove.

Posted yesterday at 1:56 pm by Rob Macklin in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Velator reserve

Lots (maybe 20) of Sand Martins hawking insects over the reserve this morning, and with them a few (4/5?) Swallows. A few Chiffchaffs were also taking insects at lower level and two were singing. The two Grey Wagtails were back for more, and also of note were 3 Reed Buntings, 2 Gadwall, still 2 Swans. A Great Spotted Woodpecker was again drumming. Tawny Owl called, once! As did a Cetti's Warbler.

Posted yesterday at 1:32 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Dragonfly Plymouth

A large Dragonfly yesterday afternoon whizzed past the car on Mannamead Road near the Hyde Park. Wouldn't mind betting it was a Vagrant Emperor from the very brief view that I got.

Posted yesterday at 7:37 am by Rich Billington in Other Wildlife

Sunday 17th March 2019

North Devon coast – Rillage Pt & Bull Pt

Some signs of real movement for the first time in a couple of weeks, with 170 Meadow Pipits battling W into a still blustery headwind along the clifftops and just offshore at Rillage Point between 06.15 & 08.15. Other passerine migrants included small numbers of Linnets and alba wagtails. Both at Rillage and at Bull Point later in the morning, there was an almost continuous westbound passage of Herring and Lesser Black-backed Gulls, following the shoreline.

Posted March 17th at 11:04 pm by Tim Jones in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Roadford Lake

Pink Footed Goose with Canada Geese from viaduct today.17th March.

Posted March 17th at 7:54 pm by Adrian Davey in General Birding

Wrafton Pond

3 Swallow + 1 Sand Martin above the pond.

Posted March 17th at 6:52 pm by Rob Jutsum in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Plymbridge Woods.

This morning between the showers:-

7 Mandarin, 1 Kingfisher, 1 Bullfinch (f), 1 Marsh tit, 1 Ring necked Parakeet,   1 Great spotted Woodpecker (m) drumming, Magpies and Crows nest building.

Posted March 17th at 2:46 pm by Alan Livsey in General Birding

Anchor Wood - Penhill marsh from Tarka trail

11:30 - 12:30 low water.
31x Cormorant on the mid channel sand bank. 1x Greeshank in shallow water right close to the trail (this bird has been around this spot at low water for a month now). 14 Shelduck in Anchor wood field. The usual sprinkling of Curlew and Little egret. Strangely very few Redshank.
Very little on Penhill marsh just 4 Little Egret and 3 Shelduck.

Posted March 17th at 2:23 pm by Roy Churchill in General Birding

Roadford Lake

Roadford this am:

at least 14 Brambling with Chaffinch flock on shore of Lake

2 Barnacle Geese

Barnacle Goose
Barnacle Goose

Posted March 17th at 9:42 am by Rupert Kirkwood in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Saturday 16th March 2019

Beesands Ley

Quick look mid-afternoon, Male Ring-necked Duck ( presumed Slapton bird ), male Scaup, 32 Tufted Ducks, male Pochard, Great Crested Grebe and a Sand Martin.

Posted March 16th at 5:52 pm by Perry Sanders in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Tidal road AG and Slapton

Nice views of a greenshank and a Great black backed gull with a flounder on the tidal road. At Slapton the odd gannet really close to shore and a raft of about 20 common scoter far out.



Great Black-backed Gull
Great Black-backed Gull

Posted March 16th at 2:13 pm by Richie Moore in General Birding

Otter at Slapton

Nice to see an otter this morning outside the Stokeley hide at Slapton. I had a felling it saw me as well


Posted March 16th at 2:08 pm by Richie Moore in Other Wildlife

Teignmouth Seafront

2 Sandwich Tern flew S this morning

Posted March 16th at 10:22 am by David Cope in General Birding

Friday 15th March 2019


Two Red-necked Grebes at Elbury Cove, Torbay today, with 1 GND. One beginning to develop red neck. 

Posted March 15th at 5:23 pm by Steve Cox in General Birding

Turf pub

Wheater on rocks by the Turf. Red legged Partridge by Powderham Church.

Posted March 15th at 11:36 am by Nick Workman in General Birding

Thursday 14th March 2019

Purple Sandpipers - Torquay

At least seven Purple Sandpipers on the rocks at Haldon Pier this morning at high tide. 

Posted March 14th at 7:23 pm by Cliff Parrott in General Birding

Marsh Harrier - Exminster Marshes

Distant views of the female Marsh Harrier at around 3:45pm this afternoon, Also a male Kestrel hunting in the field in front of Swans nest. 

Posted March 14th at 6:46 pm by Jordan in General Birding


2 Cattle Egrets were with a small group of Little Egrets in the field the other side of the roundabout from Matford Pool this lunchtime.

Posted March 14th at 4:52 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Wednesday 13th March 2019

South Hams

A violent battle as I drove down the road to South Sands at Salcombe around 1345hrs today. A sparrowhawk was wrestling what I believe to be a jay in the middle of the road, forcing me to stop. I quickly took a photo through the car window but both birds flew off into a neighbouring garden when I got out! I did not hold out much hope for the jay though!

Earlier at South Milton Ley, where I filled the feeders, 6 Snipe and 4 Mallard on the now water covered area where the reed cut took place earlier this year. Goldfinch, Chaffinch, Water rail, Pheasant with many assorted Tits at the feeders. Sparrowhawk, 2 Buzzard, several Chiffchaff , 4 Yellowhammer and a couple of Cirls  elsewhere on the marsh.

At South Huish, little change. Mike P pointed out a Mediterranean Gull,  earlier had seen 2 Water Pipit on the meadow. Good numbers of LBB Gulls in with the flock.

Sparrowhawk v Jay at Salcombe - 13.3.2019
Sparrowhawk v Jay at Salcombe - 13.3.2019

Posted March 13th at 7:03 pm by David Pakes in General Birding

Ring-Necked Duck

Beesands Ley 13/3/19 Drake Ring-Necked Duck Drake Pochard 46 Tufties 2 Teal 4 GC Grebe 2 Gadwall 7 Sand Martin female Stonechat on the beach

Posted March 13th at 5:46 pm by Bryn & Ros Burgess in General Birding

Matford Marsh,

2 Cattle Egrets on the large scrape at Matford  late morning, plus 1 Little Egret, and at least 25 Shoveler, mainly males.   Just a bit windy

Posted March 13th at 5:34 pm by Rupert Ormerod in General Birding

Tarka Trail & Bradiford Reserve

Leucistic Blackbird by the side of the Tarka trail near Chivenor roundabout.

 2 Pink-footed Geese with some Canada Geese sheltering & foraging on Bradiford Reserve in 50 > 60 mph westerly gale force winds this morning.


Posted March 13th at 4:41 pm by Rob Jutsum in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

lower tamar lake and roadford reservoir

lower tamar ,  from the carpark by the bird feeders, and down to the hide a good selection of birds were seen,  32 birds altogether with good views of the willow tit.

moved on to roadford, and from the viaduct looking north we had 3 golden eye, two barnacle geese and a pinkfoot goose feeding with the canada.  

Posted March 13th at 4:24 pm by roger jewell & mike gibson in General Birding

13 March Powderham Park and Exe

Among other birds seen were Sand martin, Peregrine that put up the gulls and Curlew on Powderham Park, Snipe and Green Sandpiper.  Plus a flock of 110 Pintail on the Exe.

Posted March 13th at 3:52 pm by Pete Stevens in General Birding

Shiphay, Torquay


Very surprised to find a Red-Legged Partridge strutting up and down on my back lawn this morning!  An unlikely, enclosed and suburban location for the species.  Although it seemed happy nosing about on the adjacent patio and through the daffodils, I thought that I'd check that it was OK.  As soon as I stepped outside, it lifted off and flew powerfully in the direction of Torbay Hospital. 

An interesting start to the day.    

Posted March 13th at 3:48 pm by Paul Darlington in General Birding

Tuesday 12th March 2019


Pleasantly surprised in the reserve this afternoon, when I found several Chaffinches hawking insects over the pond, along with a Chiffchaff in the reeds. Then another bird flew towards me and landed on the other side of the pond: very smart male Grey Wagtail, which was then joined by a female. Never seen a pair in the reserve before. One of the Swans then flew in but it's mate didn't quite make it over the trees, so landed outside. first Swan called for it, had a look round, then left.

Posted March 12th at 8:23 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh

Found a Spotted Redshank on the marsh with Redshank at around 10am and then flushed somewhere by a brazen Sparrowhawk which then sat on a post in the middle of the reserve. Not seen again. 

Posted March 12th at 4:19 pm by Matt Collis in General Birding

Broadsands - Recent Pics: Male Yellowhammers

Just a tip of the hat to Bill Coulson's stunning photo Tweeted a couple of weeks ago.

NB Bottom left m&f; bottom right, with m Cirl Bunting




Posted March 12th at 2:57 pm by Dave Holloway in General Birding

Broadsands - Recent Pics: Male Cirl Buntings

Sorry, can't help myself! This is really infectious plus, with the limitations of the camera (& the user!) where else can you get this close?

NB Last pic, m & f together.


Posted March 12th at 2:38 pm by Dave Holloway in General Birding

Broadsands - Recent Pics: Female Yellowhammer v Female Cirl Bunting

More recent picks from Broadsands comparing female Cirl Buntings & Yellowhammers. Never been anywhere where I've had to think about this before. I'm no expert, thanks go to, Mike Langman, Collins Bird Guide & Birds ID Insights, by Couzens & Nurney.

  • Top Row: Female Yellowhammer - showning, thick, diffuse, smudged breast streaking; yellow primary edges; yellow in crown; " blobby" face markings; yellow tinged belly; diagnostic rufous rump partially visible.
  • Bottom Row: Female Cirl Bunting - showing, thin, fine breast streaking; pale primary edges; no yellow in crown; sharper, clearer face markings; no yellow in belly; diagnostic olive/grey rump.

Posted March 12th at 2:07 pm by Dave Holloway in General Birding

Red Kite

12.00 Red kite seen a mile east of Barnstaple on the A361

Posted March 12th at 12:22 pm by richard yeats in General Birding

Monday 11th March 2019

Exminster Marsh and Cockwood

Exminster Marsh

A quick look this morning for yesterday’s reported female Red-crested Pochard was unsuccessful but the Snow Goose was still in the feild next to the Swans Nest inn. I also saw my first Sand Martin of the year with 4 birds around the viewing platform. 


This afternoon around 4:15pm were 2 Cattle Egret (possibly 4 but didnt have my scope) in a tree with Little Egrets behind Cofton garage. More details if interested on

Posted March 11th at 10:08 pm by Spencer Dicks in General Birding

Hen Harrier Exmoor

A stunning female Hen Harrier in flight, light and buoyant hunting over the moorland and scattered trees.  Clear views of the white rump.  Also Kestrel, approx. 200 Golden Plover, 3 Buzzards, Ravens, Crows, Skylarks, Meadow Pipits, Stonechat, 30 Fieldfares and a large flock of Starlings.

Posted March 11th at 5:53 pm by Nicholas Armstrong in General Birding

Glossy ibis

Glossy ibis sighted in Budleigh Salterton in fields on the left of white bridge on the river otter

Posted March 11th at 5:13 pm by Paul jenkins in General Birding

11-03-19 Plym-woods

The two Peregrine Falcons by Plym-wood Quarry, were showing well today, and managed a distant shot of the pair mating, a new female this year, but not sure if the male is the same one or new. A shot through the holly bush of a Female Kingfisher, and a friendly Dipper by the weir.

Peregrines matingFemale KingfisherDipper
Peregrines mating                       Female Kingfisher                                    Dipper

Posted March 11th at 4:11 pm by Greg Bradbury in General Birding


The 2 Red-necked Grebes were together off Churston Point & Elberry Cove (c.12:45); 2 Great Northern Divers near the Mussel Beds; 3 Great Crested Grebes off Three Beaches.

At least, 10 Cirl Buntings (7m, 3f); 5 Yellowhammers (3m, 2f); 2 Reed Buntings (fs), coming to the seed behind beach huts.

Also a Grey Seal in Broadsands Bay & c.10 - 15 Common Dolphins in Torbay, off Churston Point.


Posted March 11th at 3:56 pm by Dave Holloway in General Birding

Ludwell Valley - Matford - Cattle Egret

7 or 8 Green Sandpiper between Ludwell Lane and Woodwater Lane. Nothing much on the Northbrook otherwise (council adding new paths and clearing away undergrowth, so no Dipper, no Grey Wags, no Water Rail bur brief glimpse of Kingfisher). Nothing unusual on Matford Marshes but in the fields behind the Storage Unit depot on Sannerville Way between the railway and the canal a Cattle Egret with 18 mute swans. Quite flighty but did not fly far. Approx grid ref SX946887


Cattle Egret
Cattle Egret

Posted March 11th at 3:17 pm by Martin Rooney in General Birding

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