Devon Bird Sightings: Bird News from October 2012

Coronavirus - Devon Birds bird hides

During the ongoing Coronavirus outbreak the use of Devon Birds bird hides should be in line with Government guidelines to individuals on how to protect themselves.

Please follow NHS guidelines: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/social-distancing/what-you-need-to-do/

Thank you for your co-operation and stay safe.

Posted August 25th at 9:58 am by Mike Daniels in Bird News

Changes to Devon Bird Sightings

This page was initially set up to give a concise news summary of birds of interest seen in Devon. Anyone noting interesting species, passage and counts could post the details to inform other birders what was going on around the county. Photos could also be added for interest and to enliven the posts. It was accepted that because other wildlife was of interest, this would also appear especially when included in a birding post.

However, in the last year, more posts have been appearing purely on subjects other than birds. Whilst of interest to some observers, this is detracting from the aim of the pages, i.e. principally bird sightings.

Devon Birds has therefore taken the decision to require contributors of other wildlife to post this in the Other Wildlife subject. However it’s accepted that occasional, exceptional, other wildlife seen during a birding outing justifies inclusion in the bird sightings post. This should, however, be a minor part of the post.

Photos are often appearing as a gallery, or even acting as a personal photo blog, rather than of county-wide sightings of interest. Devon Birds has a Gallery which members and other birders are welcome to submit their often stunning photos to, for others to see. Many of these photos need not then appear on this page. From now on, only two photos per post will be accepted to help keep posts more concise.

Devon Birds very much welcomes posts that already meet these criteria and those that will continue to do so. It would also be great to widen the input from keen birders who currently don’t contribute, including some old friends who have dropped out. Hopefully the changes will encourage wider participation, so if you look at the site but don’t post, please consider doing so.

Our aim is to provide a concise daily news summary of bird sightings around Devon, and these changes should fulfil this goal.

Below is a summary of the changes:

  • Bird News (bird sightings of interest, with added occasional other wildlife) will be the default subject when visitors arrive at this page.
  • Other Wildlife posts therefore won’t initially be shown unless visitors click Other Wildlife under Subjects on the right-hand side.
  • Only two photos can now be submitted per post.
  • General bird photos should be posted in our Gallery please.
  • Co-authors should now only use the Submit a Blog Post form, to ensure a more consistent format for posts.

Posted August 21st at 3:53 pm in Bird News

2019 Descriptions - last call

The deadline for the 2019 Bird Report is rapidly approaching. If you found (or saw) any of these birds please could you submit a description to recorder@devonbirds.org to ensure your records are published. Many thanks. 

Alpine Swift, Dawlish 11 Jun  Long-tailed Skua, Dawlish Warren 11 Oct
Barred Warbler, Thurlestone 30 Aug Purple Heron, Slapton Ley 07 May
Caspian Gull, Thurlestone, 08 Feb Sabine's Gull, Thurlestone 14 Aug
Caspian Gull, Topsham 02 Aug Serin (2), Harrowbeer 19 Apr
Cory's Shearwater, Berry Head 19 Jul Tree Sparrow (2), Berry Head 20 Mar
Hooded Crow, Baggy Point 10 May  

 

Posted May 2nd at 3:27 pm by Kevin Rylands in Bird News

Membership

If you follow our Blog but are not currently a member of Devon Birds please consider joining Devon Birds to help 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 in Bird News

Wednesday 31st October 2012

Exminster Marshes

The pair of Red-crested Pochards were still present on the large lagoon at lunchtime today, viewable from the canal path.

Posted October 31st, 2012 at 10:19 pm by Terry Smith in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

Very very quiet at the moment although disturbance on the airfield is not helping. 34 Golden Plover were trying to get onto the barley field this evening to roost. Yesterday 40 Fieldfares were the first of the autumn  along with a single Stonechat - even the numbers of Skylark and Meadow Pipit are way down compared to last year.

Posted October 31st, 2012 at 8:32 pm in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Bay watched for 2 hrs from 09.25 before the heavy rain set in , sea rough with a F6/7 SW wind.

Notable for passage of Gannet -370 , Kittiwake -90. Also flying east - a SOOTY SHEARWATER at 09.25, 6 COMMON SCOTER, 3 Auk's .  2 Great Northern Diver - 1 on sea at 09.45 and 1 east far out at 10.00

Waders in the Bay 2 Turnstone and a Curlew .

Only a db Brent Goose on the marsh this morning- looks as though the White- fronted Geese have moved

on. This afternoon at a local farm an ad m Black Redstart

Posted October 31st, 2012 at 6:09 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Exmouth

Leisure Centre - fw drake scaup still present.

29 & 30/10 - Orcombe Point - best birds over the past couple of days - 3 snipe, 1 black redstart, 1 mistle thrush, ad mediterranean gull, 1 fieldfare, 2 reed bunting, 3 brambling and 1 redpoll sp plus small numbers of other common migrants.

Mudbank - 29 & 30/10 - 11 pale-bellied brent goose, 8 great crested grebe, 2 knot, 1 ad mediterranean gull, 2 goldeneye, 4 red-breasted merganser, 150+ pintail, 1 scaup and c60+ turnstone.

scaup - present since 7/10 at least - usually of Mudbank
scaup - present since 7/10 at least - usually of Mudbank

black redstart - Orcombe Point - 29/10
black redstart - Orcombe Point - 29/10

magpie feeding from cattle - Orcombe Point
magpie feeding from cattle - Orcombe Point

Posted October 31st, 2012 at 9:10 am by Matt Knott in Bird News

Tuesday 30th October 2012

Cattle Egret - Colyford/Bridge Marsh

The Cattle Egret was still present this afternoon. It's been staying in the Colyford Marsh/Bridge Marsh area, although it did fly a fair way upstream and out of sight when disturbed by a passing helicopter.



Posted October 30th, 2012 at 10:55 pm by Tim White in Bird News

Velator reserve

The autumn influx of Finches has begun, and today, aided and abetted by lots of black sunflower seeds in the feeders, we ringed 52! Other birds ringed of note were Great-spotted Woodpecker, Kingfisher and Sparrowhawk (all females).

As we left the reserve, in the juncus were about 40 Meadow Pipits. If only the cattle were to stay in the field, perhaps they'd stay, but once the cows go, the dogs will arrive and soon flush all the local birds....

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 8:12 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Yesterday I omitted to confirm the White-fronted Goose were Greenland- today they were on the Marsh at 11.30 and later moved to a nearby stubble field. Also on the Marsh - 6 Snipe, 40 Teal, 4 Wigeon., 1 Merlin and 20 Lapwing over.

A Black Redstart on the roof of the flats by the car park.

Thurlestone Marsh - 10 Lapwing, 2 Wigeon, 30 Teal  6 Shoveler, Little Grebe , Snipe.

Bob B ringed 3 Reed Bunting, 1 Cettis and a late Reed Warbler with a Redpoll over.

Tonight the Starling roost was the largest so far at 250,000 +

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 6:27 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Downend

15.10 - 16.15  Female Surf Scoter still present with 29 Common Scoter, also 2 Great Northern Divers still in summer plumage. 

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 5:49 pm by Maria Fernandes in Bird News

Slapton

Three Great Northern Divers in remnants of summer plumage close in offshore. Also 3 Common Scoters. Goldeneye female on the ley.

At nearby Prawle a late Wheatear.

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 5:26 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Start Point

Alan Searle caught and rang a Yellow-browed Warbler at the farm this morning. Firecrest also present.

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 4:57 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

River Caen/ River Taw

1330-1600hrs. 1 Rock Pipit, 30+ Meadow Pipit, 4 Little Grebe, 4 Greenshank, 50+ Redshank, good numbers of Starling, Curlew and Wigeon, 50+ Lapwing, 30+ Oystercatcher, 3 Shelduck and a Kestrel.

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 4:51 pm by John hunt in Bird News

Lundy 20–29 October

Richard Campey, James Diamond, Tim Davis and myself are just back from Lundy, where our arrival on 20th coincided with the change of weather from fast-moving Atlantic lows to a mainly dry easterly flow. We enjoyed some excellent visible migration, with major movements of thrushes in particular. On 25th, for example, 900 Chaffinches, 900 Redwings, 525 Starlings, 60 Meadow Pipits, 39 Blackbirds, 35 Siskin, 27 Song Thrushes and 9 Bramblings flew over Castle Hill between 07.30 & 09.30. The island was almost literally covered with thrushes on 24th & 25th, with over 2,500 Redwings, up to 80 Song Thrushes and more than 150 Blackbirds, in just the relatively limited areas thoroughly counted.

Highest day-counts of scarcer migrants included 2 Jack Snipe, 3 Firecrests, 12 Black Redstarts, 5 Ring Ouzels, 8 Woodcocks, 3 Snow Buntings, and 4 Crossbills. At least two Coal Tits and a rather forlorn Long-tailed Tit also count as scarce migrants by Lundy standards.

There was a slow trickle of Swallows (though no House Martins), with a light smattering of Wheatears, Whinchats, and Common Redstarts still going through, but apart from the expected Chiffs and Blackcaps, no lingering warblers other than a single Garden Warbler on 20th. A probable tristis Chiffchaff was trapped and ringed by Tony Taylor et al. on 23rd.

Strong winds from between NE and NW at the end of last week and on Saturday brought an unusual variety of wildfowl to the island, including a female Tufted Duck, 3 ad Brent Geese, up to 13 Wigeon and a 1-w Whooper Swan that turned up yesterday (29th). Also up to 26 Common Scoter, 14 Bar-tailed Godwits, a Pomarine Skua and a Bonxie offshore.

The only real rarity of the week was an elusive Little Bunting found by James and seen at three different locations between Pondsbury and the Church on 24th (only). Richard managed to photograph it sitting on the rope around the helipad (the bunting, not Richard) in the afternoon.

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 4:17 pm by Tim Jones in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

A very brief visit late morning with the grandchildren. The pair of red-crested pochard were on the lagoon with c6 tufted duck.

On the canal bank c6 blackbirds, 4 redwing, 2 song thrushes and 2 stonechats. A single house martin flew over. Heard 2 Cettis and 3 water rails.

At Turf about 20 avocets with more towards Topsham, a few curlew and 3 black-tailed godwits.

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 3:26 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Broadsands

From Elberry Headland: 1 Black-necked Grebe, 6 Brent Geese, 31 Common Scoter.

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 3:14 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Berry Hd

Relatively quiet overhead today: 4 Brambling (two came dropped into tree see below),  2 Crossbill, 9 alba Wagtails, 6 Skylark, 2 Yellowhammer, 3 Lesser Redpoll, 4 Bullfinch, 12 Redwing, 17 Song Thrush, 12 Goldfinch, 4 Siskin, 2 Greenfinch.

Brambling Berry Hd 301012 SEO BH 301210

Around Headland (REB counts later in morning included), 1 Short-eared Owl, 2 Ring Ouzel, 1 Black Redstart, 4 Stonechat, 1 Blackcap, 3 Chiffchaff and 16 Goldcrest

SEOBH301012ML

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 3:12 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Surf Scoter - Downend

Surf Scoter still present at Downend with flock of Common Scoters.

Also 1 Merlin flew north & 1 Great Northern Diver still in summer plumage.


Posted October 30th, 2012 at 2:32 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

R.Taw, Pottington to Ashford sewage works.

09:15 - 10:45

Black-tailed Godwit 1; Lapwing c250; Redshank c50; Dunlin 8; Grey Plover 1; Little Egret 6 and Kingfisher 1.

At 10:05 c3000 Golden Plover made an appearance and began to land on their usual sandbanks just off Penhill Marsh but were very skittish and after about 15 minutes decided to fly off down river towards Chivenor.

19 Redwing were feeding on the berry bushes in the scrub area between the Green Sandpiper ditch and the sewage works plus 4 Song Thrush and numerous Blackbirds. A flock of c30 Meadow Pipits were flipping about the sandpiper ditch and Crows were mobbing a Buzzard in the same area, putting up just 1 Snipe with all the racket. A small flock of 7 Long-tailed Tits were in the bushes alongside the Tarka Trail.

C40 Teal and c20 Mallard were in Bradiford Reserve.

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 11:34 am by Maurice Clements in Bird News

Bursdon Moor, North Devon

Monday 29th October.

1 male HenHarrier and 1 Merlin present at dusk.   Male Hen Harrier also noted on Saturday 27th

Per Barry Bryne

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 10:34 am by Harvey Kendall in Bird News

Monday 29th October 2012

Exminster Marshes

The pair of Red-crested Pochards were on the main lagoon with a small group of Gadwall at 12.30 today.

Posted October 29th, 2012 at 9:23 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Mid-Soar

 Short-eared Owl over ploughed field next to field with the Sib. Stonechat-a real beauty that finally showed well when rain stopped around noon.

Posted October 29th, 2012 at 6:17 pm by Sam Forest in Bird News

BERRY HEAD

Popped out between showers this morning for a quick scout around Berry Head and managed to see ;

2 x Ring Ouzel

4 x Stonechat

6 x Meadow Pipit

Posted October 29th, 2012 at 5:15 pm in Bird News

Soar

Had a walk around in very blustery conditions this afternoon. 1 Ring Ouzel amongst a dozen or so Blackbirds in the relativly sheltered Starehole Valley, also a couple chiffchaffs. At mid-Soar the Siberian Stonechat showing well in its favoured field cavorting with a couple of its commoner cousins.

Posted October 29th, 2012 at 4:58 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Close inshore this morning a Great Northern Diver ( first of the winter ) At 09.30  flew east. Whilst watching the diver a Black Redstart flew onto the car park fence. A few Gannet and 14 Kittiwake flew east.

On South Huish Marsh  -1 db Brent Goose, 2 Wigeon, 2 Snipe 1 Dunlin 40 Teal, 1ad Yellow-legged Gull.

At 12.30 rec'd a call from Mike Miller to say he had seen 4 Grey Geese fly onto the back of the Marsh. Drove straight over to find 4 Greenland White-fronted Goose feeding - flew inland at 13.35 when they were found in a field on the road leading to the sewage works at S M Ley. Later reported back on the Marsh . First record for some years and a first for the month of October

Posted October 29th, 2012 at 4:44 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Soar Valley

2 Ring Ouzels this morning.

Posted October 29th, 2012 at 2:09 pm by Roger White in Bird News

Surf Scoter - Downend

Digiscoping this bird has been challenging to say the least!

Posted October 29th, 2012 at 12:59 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Surf Scoter

Still present with the Scoter flock late morning off the point at Down End.

Posted October 29th, 2012 at 12:16 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Sunday 28th October 2012

Staddon Heights

3 Ring Ouzel and 1 Firecrest this afternoon.

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 10:14 pm by Steve Votier in Bird News

Torbay

Left Paignton harbour 8.30am prompt as tide was falling fast. Sea calm with a South West breeze and definite requirement for winter coat and a woolly hat!


BROADSANDS: Black-Necked Grebe, 6 Brent Geese, 3 Shelduck (overhead).

ELBURY COVE - THREE QUARRIES - BRIXHAM HARBOUR: 14 Grey Heron, Kingfisher, 3 Purple Sandpiper, 20 Turnstone, 4 Rock Pipit, 2 Little Egret, Grey Seal.

BERRY HEAD CLIFFS: 28 Common Scoter, 500 Guillemot, 12 Brent Geese, 4 Razorbills, Porpoise.

MID CHANNEL TOWARDS HOPES NOSE: 50 Gannet, 6 Kittiwake.


A good selection of birds and wildlife and a pleasure to be 100 metres from the shore at a leisurely pace for most of the way. 

Terry Lakeman

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 7:03 pm by Steve Waite in Bird News

Wembury and other

0630-0900 Quiet for Vis Mig this morning. 2+ Firecrests still present and 2 Brambling over. A few bits and bobs as well, the best of which were random - 3 Teal, 12 Wigeon and 3 Mute Swans. One Stock Dove in with 500+ Woodpigeon.

My wife then wanted a drive somewhere so I suggested Thurlestone and surrounding area as I had never been there and wanted to know why it gets many more birds than Wembury.... One Sanderling on the beach at Thurlestone and then on to Soar for the Sibe Stonechat - a stunner. Also had one Jay at Soar.

Thanks to the helpful birders and car park warden at Thurlestone who gave me directions to Soar.

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 6:13 pm in Bird News

Seaton Area

Cattle Egret still present late this afternoon, on Colyford Marsh and Bridge Marsh (the latter is adjacent to A3052). Of local interest, a drake Mandarin on Lower Bruckland Ponds.


Posted October 28th, 2012 at 4:42 pm in Bird News

Exmouth and Soar

Orcombe - 0645 - 3+ reed bunting, 1+ fieldfare, c40+ linnet, 2+ brambling, c25+ starling, 20+ meadow pipit, 3 lapwing, 8+ song thrush, 14+ pied wagtail, 1 snipe, 25+ chaffinch, 20+ goldfinch, c2000+ woodpigeon (all west), 10+ siskin, 1+ redpoll sp, 15+ blackbird, 12+ robin, 1 stonechat, 40+ jackdaw, 2 curlew, 2 jay, 8+ goldcrest, 4 bullfinch, 1 coal tit, 3 chiffchaff, 2 rook, 1 turnstone, 1 great spotted woodpecker and 1 grey wagtail.  

Soar - c1100 - 1 woodlark north, 2+ cirl bunting, 7+ goldcrest, 1 chiffchaff 1 large pipit sp (almost certainly richard's) south @ 1115, 6 stonechat, 1 treecreeper, 2+ coal tit and of course, the reason for the twitch, the stunning siberian stonechat - many thanks Al, a bird I've been longing to see!

chiffchaff - Orcombe Point
chiffchaff - Orcombe Point

grey wagtail - Orcombe Point
grey wagtail - Orcombe Point

siberian stonechat - Soar
siberian stonechat - Soar

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 3:43 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

Middle Soar

Siberian Stonechat still present at 2.0 pm, together with male Stonechat. 200 yards east of the 'farm.'  Also, 22 Golden Plover flew over west.

Roger White

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 3:39 pm by Roger White in Bird News

Female Goldeneye - Downend

pic


Posted October 28th, 2012 at 2:50 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Goldeneye - Downend

One female Goldeneye with Common Scoters at Downend yesterday morning. I had a problem with my PC yesterday

 so late posting.

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 2:46 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Scoters - Downend

Steve - just seen your entry on the blog.

No, I did not see any white on the wing on this individual while I was digiscoping the Scoters at Downend this morning.

While I remember I will later post the pic of the female Goldeneye that I spotted yesterday.

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 2:26 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Scoter

Just been out to look at the Scoters. Didn't have enough time (arghhh!) but the one that was different didn't seem to have any white on the wing, so I agree with Surf Scoter. I'll try to get back out later (no car now!) and should be able to get closer. If you park in teh last layby you can walk down almost to the point - they are just offshore there.

 

ps thanks fo the text, Steve!

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 1:00 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Scoters Downend

Steve's right - I would put money on it being a Surf Scoter on head/ body shape and size.

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 12:34 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

North Hallsands

Yellow- browed Warbler still present this morning ( Alan Searle ).

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 12:32 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Start Point

06:10-09:45. Clear most of the night , 30 % cloud cover by daybreak, cloud increasing swiftly through morning. Mod SW wind.

Saw the following watching the vis mig from the car park between 06:30-08:45 ( all birds headed between south and southeast ). 3 Skylark, 2 alba wagtails, 40 Meadow Pipits, 4 Swallows, 420 Chaffinch, 300 Goldfinch, 130 Linnet, 39 Greenfinch, 26 Siskin, 17 Brambling, 7 Bullfinch and 2 Reed Buntings. As often the case Woodpigeon movemnt erratic and hard to fathom. Conservative count of 3000 ( mussed have missed loads ) flying southwest inland on a rough heading between Slapton and Lannacombe / Prawle. Very likely many of these birds later seen flying north offshore form the point towards Slapton and others flying north up Mattiscombe Valley. Away from the vis mig a Short-eared Owl flew south over the ridge, a ring ouzel called from gorse below the car park, a Lesser Redpoll flew overhead near the light and a Great Spotted Woodpecker passed by. Nothing down at the light and in the farm just a Chiffchaff and a couple Jays.

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 12:27 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Downend Scoter

Rob - did you see the white wings of the Velvet?  Because in your photo it looks more like a female/immature Surf Scoter on size, structure and build.

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 12:23 pm by Steve Waite in Bird News

Common Scoter & Velvet Scoter - Downend

Now 6 male + 17 female Common Scoters + 1 female Velvet Scoter


Posted October 28th, 2012 at 11:28 am by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Wrafton Pond

An exciting influx of 4 Wigeon this morning with a female Shoveler.

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 10:51 am by Jon Turner in Bird News

Berry Hd

Good mixture of overhead movement today if not in big numbers: 60 Redwing, 1 Fieldfare, 152 Chaffinch,  6 Brambling, 11 Lesser Redpoll, 7 Siskin, 5 House Sparrows, 36 Bullfinch, 14 Skylark, 7 alba Wagtails, 1 Grey Wagtail, 1 (late) Yellow Waghtail, 5 Swallows, 19 Starling, 21 Song Thrush, 30 Wood Pigeon, 1 Stock Dove, 50+ Jackdaws and 1 Rook.

Around the headland: 2 Ring Ouzel, 1 Yellowhammer, 3 Chiffchaff, 8 Goldcrest, 2 Blackcap, 3 Black Redstarts, 1 Stonechat.

Blk Rdst BH 281012 ring Ouzel BH 281012

A lesser? Redpoll looked small but paler cheeked and chested than many lessers and well streaked with black white(ish)mid/upper rump, much whiter greater covert bars than two others seen well during the morning.

Redpoll BH 281012 redpoll BH 281012

 And 1 Red-breasted Merganser flew S. 

ML & BMc

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 10:42 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Rare Egrets

Yesterday a Cattle Egret was on the Axe.  First found by Phil Abbott at Seaton Marshes mid morning, then seen late afternoon on Colyford Marsh and Bridge Marsh (field just south of A3052 just east of Colyford).

In north Devon, a Great White Egret was photographed by Paul Tuson next to the Mill House at Weare Giffard.

Posted October 28th, 2012 at 8:29 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Mid Soar

Sberian Stonechat Mid Soar Farm today:

If still present today (Sunday) please be aware that the Farm house is occupied!!




Posted October 28th, 2012 at 12:37 am by Alan Doidge in Bird News

Saturday 27th October 2012

Blagdon Valley, Hartland Point.

20 blackbirds, field fare, 10 redwing, 2f blackcap,8 goldcrest, 6 song thrush, 3 c.chaff, yellowhammer, f.bullfinch, 4 wren, 2 coal tit.

Up to 5,000 starlings in fields near Point.

At Gawlish Farm near Hartland Point huge flock of starlings, difficult to determine numbers but conservative est 50,000!!

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 9:54 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Middle Soar

The charming Sibe' Stoenchat showing well with 3-4 Common Stonechats early afternoon. Nice one Alan - fully justifies all those scones!Siberian Stonechat

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 9:20 pm by Steve Young in Bird News

Start Point

After the viz mig with Perry and Paul I went south then west. After flushing a Woodcock from gorse by the path down Mattiscombe valley I noted a ringtail Hen Harrier going E. over the next valley and 1-2 Firecrests here.

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 9:09 pm by Steve Young in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 13:15 till 18:00

had a call from mark baker about 2 red crested pochard on the marsh and on arrival the male and female were viewable in the channel to the left of the hide and remained in view all afternoon, good numbers of duck had arrived over night with a cracking male goldeneye showing well, 4+ gadwall, 8+ pochard, 4+ tufted duck, 146+ wigeon, 6+ shoveler, the juv ruff was viewable early afternoon but not seen after a peregrine caused havoc, also 1 sparrowhawk, 2 kestrel, 5+ buzzard, 140+ dunlin, 29+ Bar tailed godwits still very good numbers of black tailed godwits, 3 greenshank, 230+ redshank, 5+ snipe, 5+ little grebe, 2 Cetti's warblers, 12 Brent geese including 1 juv, 10+ knot, 1 grey plover, 500+ starling went to roost in the reeds on far side from the hide.

A quick look around the viewing platform before leaving was rewarded with a close encounter with a female merlin flying right over my head a great way to end the day. 

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 8:46 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Siberian Stonechat directions

Fantastic bird showing well this afternoon. Well done and thanks Al. In case anyone is trying for it in the morning but is not that familiar with the area i have attached a crude map of where it is with directions


Posted October 27th, 2012 at 8:35 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Stoke Point

Plenty of common migrants in the area including a northern wheatear that led me round the houses, also brambling.

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 8:06 pm by Steve Votier in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

 Sunshine at alst but a cold N wind

At 08.15 the Starling dispersal was at least 125,000, also on the Marsh 6 Shoveler, 1 db Brent Goose, 31 Teal, 1 Little Grebe. at 16.45 an ad m and a f Black Redstart were in my garden, then at 17.30 12 Brent Goose flew over.

 

Went to Huxton Cross for the viz mig at 09.20 had  2150 Wood Pigeon, 135 Skylark, 2 Woodlark ( flew N at 09.45 )17 Lapwing , 20 Linnet, 1 Merlin

On South Huish Marsh / in the Bay - 30 Teal, 12 Dunlin, 2 Black Redstart ( makes 4 for the patch today )2 Med Gull, Bob B had a ringtail Hen Harrier in off the sea

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 7:46 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

SOAR

No posting so far of the fantastic SIBERIAN STONECHAT found by Alan Doidge at Mid Soar Farm this morning, only the 3rd record for devon , hopefully some photo's will be posted soon . Whilst in the field 14 Golden Plover  flew over

 

This morning Bob B had 12,000 Wood Pigeon flying thru - the first big movement of the autumn

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 7:37 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Bursdon

Drove up from Cornwall this afternoon, and was passing Bursdon at about 6p.m. when a vast flock of Starlings flew SW. Estimate 50,000. Probably heading for roost somewhere in Hartland Forest.

Sadly too early to look for birds of prey going to roost.

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 7:30 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

River Caen/ River taw

1330-1600hrs.   25 Redshank,6 Little grebe,100+Starling,3Teal,Kestrel,10+Dunlin and a Little owl.Isley marsh held 17Shell duck and good numbers of Curlew and Wigeon.Over on Chivenor a Buzzard put up 300+Golden plover and 150+ Lapwing.

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 4:48 pm by John hunt in Bird News

Eagle owl

Malcolm Shakespeare had a call from a friend in Northam to say the eagle owl that was in the papers last year was still about and managed to get a few photos (23/10/12)

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 3:59 pm by David & Gillian Churchill in Bird News

Wembury again

Quick whip around the beach car park resolved my embarrassing 4 year long state of Ouzellessness with one between Churchwood Valley and the stables but only seen twice in flight and perched very briefly. Quite a few Chiffs and GC in the sun too.

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 3:50 pm in Bird News

North Hallsands

Got a call from Alan Searle who caught and rung another Yellow-browed Warbler here this morning, deja- vu from last Saturday morning. Also 2 Firecrest.

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 2:37 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Start Point

Beautiful, clear day but a bitterly cold F-S N wind.

Vis mig 07:45-09:45 ( with Paul Heaton and Steve Young, just south of the car park, all birds headed between north and northwest.

40 Skylarks, 50 Meadow Pipits, 20 alba Wagtails, Grey Wagtail, Redwing, 180 Chaffinch, 130 Goldfinch, 11 Greenfinch, Lesser Redpoll, 13 Siskin, 10 Bullfinch, 6 Brambling and 2 Reed Buntings.

c500 Woodpigeon seemed to be doing a loop around the point, we were ou of site of any probable main flight line. Against the grain 4 dark-bellied Brent Geese  south down Mattiscombe Valley.

Qiuck look around the farm produced 2 Mistle Thrushes, 2 Chiffcaffs, 6 Goldcrest and a Firecrest.

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 2:33 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Kingsbridge Estuary - North

At low tide: 15 brent geese, 8 pintail, 66 teal, scaup, red-breasted merganser, three grey plover, three barwits, greenshank, 28 redshank.

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 1:46 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Wembury

Quick walk with the family this morning yielded Steve's three Firecrests and there may have been a fourth as well, 1 Blackcap, several Chiff, 6 Wigeon, 3 Siskin, 1000+ Woodpigeon and plenty of Skylarks on the move

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 1:20 pm in Bird News

Common Scoters & Goldeneye - Downend

Now 15 Common Scoters (4 male + 11 female) + 1 early

female Goldeneye, Brisk cold northerly wind early this morning. 

Posted October 27th, 2012 at 12:36 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Friday 26th October 2012

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 15:30 till 17:30

a very good couple of hours with the juv curlew sandpiper in with 252+ dunlin, 95 avocet, 45+ bar tailed godwits, 10+ knot, 11+ greenshanks, 230+ redshank, 3+ snipe, the juv ruff was with 900-1000 black tailed godwits an impressive sight when flushed several times and best count so far this autumn, 3 fieldfares, 5 pochard, 70+ wigeon, 200+ starlings , 3 kay, 6+ buzzards, kestrel, sparrowhawk, 45+ lapwing, 

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 8:36 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Exmouth

Orcombe Point - late pm - I literally jogged around parts of Orcombe tonight with limited time to spare. Best birds were a short-eared owl flushed from private land (my sixth record for the point) and 3 dunlin with 6 sanderling on a limited stretch of sand just east of the point. Also c30+ skylark with 40+ meadow pipits in stubble and just 1 chiffchaff and 2 goldcrests.

yesterdays ring ouzel - appalling shot but it was almost dark!
yesterdays ring ouzel - appalling shot but it was almost dark!

redwing from Tuesday - another appalling shot - this time early morning!
redwing from Tuesday - another appalling shot - this time early morning!

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 8:10 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

Roadford Lake (Reservoir) - Southweek - Tuft areas

Visited the area with Wally James in advance of fieldtrip to same area on Tues 6 Nov (see East Devon Branch Programme).  The water levels were very high with lakeside margins all submerged.  Concentrated on Southweek viaduct area where a few birds were present on the lake including Gt Crested and Little Grebes, Tufted Duck, Gadwall (4) and Coot.  Overhead a few Redwing flew over.

  Moving on to Tuft area a Raven and a Sparrow Hawk were overhead before we found a mixed Tit flock which included Treecreeper.  A pair of Marsh/Willow Tit passed through leaving us unsure as to ID. Returning south we visited the Westmoor/ North Wortha peninsular taking the path from the Southweek hide where Lg T Tits and Goldcrest were present and then the surprise birds of the afternoon 2 late Hobby.  A couple of Wigeon were present on the lake.   

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 6:28 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Late swallow

Seaton Friday

A swallow was flying around the east end of the promenade at 15.30

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 6:28 pm by M&S Mccarthy in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

Slighty better conditions today (although 5C, rain and a biting NE wind hardly constitute an improvement but at least the visibility was good). Birds pretty much the same - the Wheatear still present sheltering behind some concrete posts out of the wind, just 4 Golden Plover, similar numbers of Skylark and Meadow Pipits as yesterday and a single Snipe. Still a distinct lack of thrushes.

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 6:03 pm in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

 Another gloomy day wind F5/6 E/ NE drizzle and poor viz until 13.00- another of those superb days of migration this time particularly waders , duck and geese.

Bay watched from 09.20 until 16.30 obs Bob B MBP all day AJL and Nick T am.

Total of 13 species of waders almost all flew in off the sea and straight up the valley - Lapwing 27, Snipe 12, Redshank 3, Bar T Godwit 3 , Knot 13., Sanderling 2, Curlew 1 ,  Dunlin 141 ( largest flock 16 ) Grey Plover 7, Golden Plover 13, Ringed Plover 5 and on the rocks 14 Oystercatcher and 1 Turnstone.

A new day record count  for Brent Goose  of 48 ( largest flock 17 )  Passage of Duck -  Pintail 5 , Teal 20, Wigeon 42, Shoveler 4, Common Scoter 46, Red B Merganser 1m

An Arctic Skua flew east and a further 3 Skua species,. 150 + Gannet , 5 Med Gull

23 House Martin, 5 Swallow, 4 Skylark, 50 + Mipit, 10 Chaffinch, 2 Black Redstart, 2 Wheatear and finally 150+ Starling ( in off the sea )

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 5:39 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Kingsbridge Estuary

West Charleton Marsh / Bay, 13:15-15:40, high tide.

16 Teal, 8 Pintail, Scaup ( juv/fw on flooded scrape on marsh with Pintail and Teal before they all flew out into the bay, aythya ducks are rarely seen actually on the marsh ) 7 Red-breasted Merganser, 2 Great Crested Grebe, 14 Bar-tailed Godwits ( roosting with Curlew towards Wareham Point ), 37 Lapwings ( flying north ) and a Kingfisher.

As an aside, for an interesting twist regarding a Green Sandpiper at East Soar, take a look at the Forum section and click on General Discussions.

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 5:30 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Knap Mill by Aveton Gifford

Afternoon BTO winter thrush survey turned up merlin, 15 swallows and 80 linnets.

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 4:00 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

East Soar

A quick two hours in constant drizzle and NW winds turned up 2 ring ouzels in Starehole plus 23 lapwings, grey wagtail, 41 blackbirds, 26 song thrushes, a few goldcrests & chiffchaffs plus 340 starlings.

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 2:15 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Torbay

Just to let you know, if interested, we are running a boat trip at 08.30 on Sunday 28th October from Paignton Harbour to see what birds are using the Bay and headlands. Trip will last for approx 2 hours but does depend on weather or if we find anything of interest!!!

Boat leaves at 08.30 and will cost £12, loos and hot drinks available on board, boat can take 100 passengers so do not be late!!! This is the first time we have tried this and will be running some more through the winter. 

Look forward to seeing you on Sunday.

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 2:06 pm by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News

Sharkham Village

Black redstart on my fence and feeding around parking area.

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 11:43 am by Josh Marshall in Bird News

Rousdon - yesterday 25/10

On rooftops in the Allhallows estate yesterday afternoon: at least 2 Black Redstarts (including a male)

Posted October 26th, 2012 at 11:27 am in Bird News

Thursday 25th October 2012

Skern

12 pale bellied geese, 2 bar wits, @ 16.45 

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 11:56 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Wembury Point

Early morning walk produced 3 Firecrest together below the new car park. Among good numbers of common migrants 3 Brambling over.

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 11:08 pm by Steve Votier in Bird News

Sidmouth

Took a walk/push with my 2 yr old grandson from Jacobs Ladder to Sidmouth seafront, hence no bins but was fairly sure that the small and distant bird on and around 'The Beacon' (large thatched roofed house) was a Black Redstart.  On the beach were a couple of Rock Pipit and a late Wheatear (Devon Bird Report 2010, records latest for 2010 as being Nov 13 at Turf so there are still a few more weeks left to pick up the odd bird).

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 8:16 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Exmouth

Orcombe Point - 1700 - a half hour sprint around the top fields before dark was worth the effort with a male ring ouzel in the dung field plus at least one redwing and a couple song thrushes. This is only my fourth autumn record for Orcombe and I've had just 3 spring birds.

Yesterday - Mudbank - late pm - high count of 117+ turnstone with 38 redshank and 2 greenshank.

Orcombe - 23/10 - 14+ redwing, 11+ song thrush, 1 golden plover, 2w mediterranean gull, 1 mistle thrush, 1+ fieldfare, 1 black redstart, c20+ blackbird, c30+ robin and 1 brambling on a quick pre-work visit. Also c500/1000+ (I'm really bad estimating flock sizes) starling in 1 flock heading north.

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 7:54 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

The fog and drizzle that has been here all week persisted today making visibilty very difficult. However in slightly just less than appalling conditions this afternoon 14 Golden Plover were present on the barley field and a lone Wheatear around the dung heap. Skylarks numbered around 60 and i flushed Meadow Pipits nearly all the time so numbers probably around 50. The Blackdowns haven't seen the passage notable on the coast ( I had a superb day at Portland on Tuesday) and even when the visibilty has improved slightly, only small numbers of redwings have been present.

Similarly I visited an old haunt yesterday, Shipley Bridge and apart from 4 blackbirds and a mistle thrush, thrushes were totally absent. The lack of rowan berries may be an explanation as good fruiting years have attracted hundreds of both redwing and fieldfare in the past. The hawthorn berries are also very patchy with some trees totally devoid of berries - it suggests that the thrushes are going to have a tough winter.

Superb views of a dipper just north of Shipley Bridge provided some compensation.

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 7:25 pm in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 15:30 till17:00

the juv curlew sandpiper was in with 116+ dunlin, 231+ redshank, 61 avocet, 1 juv ruff, 30+ bar tailed godwit, 800+ black tailed godwits, 40+ lapwing, 30+ snipe, 1 kingfisher, a mistle thrush was a good bird for the marsh, 5 pochard(2m,3f) 7+ greenshanks, sparrowhawk, buzzard, Cetti's warbler, water rail.

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 7:05 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Soar

08:10-17:15 ; Malborough- Furzedown / East Soar / Starehole / Warren / Higher Soar - Malborough.

Some clear breaks in the night. Grey, murky day. Fresh east wind becoming fresh-strong ENE by mid-afternoon.

11 Golden Plover, 35 Lapwing ( ploughed field behind mid-Soar House ), Green Sandpiper ( calling near car park, first heard on 5th Oct. but to my knowledge nobody has actually seen it yet ), Black Redstart ( Coastguard Cottages ), 41 Song Thrush, 71 Blackbird, 8 Ring Ouzel ( 7 Starehole in the steep north-east most sheltered part of the valley and 1 Higher Soar ), 12 Redwing, Blackcap, 3 Chiffchaff, 15 Goldcrest and around 800 scattered grounded Starlings.

Had to be a good bird somewhere but the whole area was pretty much blown out.

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 7:05 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Spoonbills - Isley Marsh

5 Spoonbills at Isley Marsh late afternoon with one large Little

Egret with the flock which would be easy to misidentify from a distance as a sixth Spoonbill.

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 6:51 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

 This am  AJL had 6 Brent Goose -pale bellied fly across the Bay - at 16.45 Bob B and I had 7 Dark bellied fly in off the sea and eventually up the valley. ( whist at Slapton at 12.00 I had 7 Dark bellied in off the sea flew around and then back out - almost certainly the same group)

Amongst a flock of 300 + Black H Gull on South Huish Marsh were 8 Med Gull ( 4ad, 2 sub ad & 2 1st w )

also an ad & 1stw Common Gull .On the marsh 3 Dunlin 2 Snipe 35 Teal.and a Wheatear.

On T'stone Marsh- 3 Shoveler ( 2f & 1 m )  2 Wigeon  3 Teal. The sight of the day was the first big murmation of Starling - they started to fly into the stubble field at 17.15- by the time they went to roost in the reeds at 17.45  there was a min of 100,000- what a sight 

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 6:36 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

A visit from North Devon, initially to try to see the Banaparte's Gull which luckilly flew by shortly after arriving. After a brief stop overlooking the estuary between Dawlish Warren and Cockwood we decided to go to Exminster Marshes. Fairly quiet apart from the Whooper Swan, but looking towards Red Lion Yard from the towpath it was a surprise to see a Great White Egret. It relocated back further towards the railway line, but despite breeding this year in our neighbouring county it is still a very scarce bird for Devon.

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 5:44 pm by Roger Doble in Bird News

Wembury and Ernesettle Creek

At Wembury this morning 5 brent geese were on the sea near the sewage pipe before disturbed by dog walkers and flying off East. Also 2 juvenile wheatears and a second winter Mediterranean gull seen and a high count of 46 Canada Geese feeding in the stubble field, the highest count I have had at Wembury. (On leaving home this morning 12 Canada geese flew over my house in the centre of Plymouth)

After dipping the lesser yellowlegs at Ernesettle Creek on Monday I found it this afternoon on the incoming tide (about 13:30) feeding with redshanks, viewed from the slipway upriver from the wrecked boat - showed very well for around 5 minutes before flying off downriver

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 5:21 pm by Stuart Green in Bird News

Aveton Gifford

On estuary 3 greenshank, 4 common sandpiper, 2 Egyptian geese & 40 wigeon. No dign of the glossy ibis!

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 3:13 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Berry Hd

Less overhead movement than yesterday and as Steve noted birds moving in lots of different directions in two hrs first thing: 301 Chaffinch, 3 Brambling, 50+ Goldfinch, 6 Siskin, 35 Starling, 96 Redwing, 8 Song Thrush, 23 Swallows, 12 alba Wagtails, 2 Grey Wagtail, 6 Skylark and 40+ Meadow Pipits.

Around the headland good numbers of Goldcrest 39 (after 2 very poor years!), 2 Firecrest, 7 Chiffchaff, 1 Black Redstart, and over 30 Robins counted - there were probably many more.

Firecrest Berry Hd 25 Oct 2012

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 1:40 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Sharkham

At least 8 Goldcrests in the wood by the cutthrough and a very vocal Hobby flew out accross the bay to Berrry Head.Everything else seemed to have hankered down out the wind

Not birding I know but the highlight was a Stoat taking a rabbit not 6 feet away from me,amazing to watch if a little uncomfortable.

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 1:37 pm by Tim Clyburn in Bird News

Axe Cliff

Best bird was a Short-eared Owl flushed from rough grass above start of Undercliff.  There were lots of birds going over (mostly Starlings, Wood Pigeons and Chaffinches) but in all directions so I didn't attempt to count.  Also Snipe, 5 Mistle Thrush, 1 Redpoll, 2 Brambling, 3 Reed Bunting and several Siskins.

It's a hard life living in the shadow of Portland!!

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 11:55 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Wednesday 24th October 2012

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 15:00 till 18:00

1 juv curlew sandpiper still in with 60+ dunlin, 1 juv ruff, 60+ snipe, 32+ bar tailed godwits, still very good numbers of black tailed godwits, 3 pochard, 9+ greenshanks, 2 Cetti's warbler, 40+ lapwing 

from viewing platform, 1 adult med gull, 11+ common gulls, 2 jay, goldcrest, kestrel, water Rail 

From goat walk topsham 3500+ starlings going to roost on exminster marsh 

Posted October 24th, 2012 at 6:42 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Froward Point

08.15-12.45. 1 Merlin, 75+ Redwing, 100+ Blackbird, 25+ Song Thrush, 5 Fieldfare, Mistle Thrush and Ring Ouzel heard only at Froward Cove, 3-4 Black Redstart (1 on the buildings at the point, 2-3 at Coleton Farm), 1 Wheatear, 2 Firecrest, 2 Brambling over south plus small numbers of Chaffinches and Goldfinches.

Posted October 24th, 2012 at 6:17 pm in Bird News

Dawlish Warren

Visited between 1pm to 4pm with the hopes of seeing the Bonaparte's gull. No luck, but did manage to spot a roosting Short-eared owl near the wooded area close to the golf course. 

Also a late Swallow flying over the dune ridge, plus a Green woodpecker near the main carpark. 

Posted October 24th, 2012 at 5:38 pm by Joe Martin in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

 Back on the patch this morning -

The Starling dispersal at 08.15 was 5000+, on the marsh - 2 Shoveler, 2 Wigeon  350 + Black Headed Gull-could only locate 1 1st w Med Gull, 11 Teal .

In the Bay  ( on the sea ) 6 Mute Swan , 3 Gadwall and a 1st w male Pochard, another 100 + Black Headed Gull. On one of the cottages a f Black Redstart, 1 Wheatear.,.amongst the gulls a m & 1stw Med gull

On South Huish Marsh - 50 Teal, 1 Water Rail, 3 Snipe and a Merlin

Posted October 24th, 2012 at 5:15 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Start Point

Bob Burridge called in this afternoon and asked me to post his sightings from this morning - As dave Norman has also posted the additions are -

 1 1st w Redstart., 50 + Goldcrest, 100 + Siskin and 100+ Chaffinch  over. 200+ Starling on the lighthouse tower at first light .

Posted October 24th, 2012 at 5:07 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Prawle 2

We were also wandering around Prawle from early morning onwards and saw a couple of extra birds to Dave. (Weather dry murky am before drizzle set in). Yellow-browed Warbler and ?? (Ashpark lane - one a more standard bright looking bird, while the bird photographed looked paler and showed a rather reduced 2nd covert bar! - see photo, neither bird called), Firecrest (reserve), 30+ Goldcrests, 2 Black Redstarts, 2 Merlin, 6 House Martins, 4 Swallows and a constant overhead passage of Chaffinchs (100's) with 2 Brambling, 15+ Chiffchaffs, 2 Blackcaps, 4 Ring Ouzels, 100+ Redwings and probably as many Blackbirds and Song Thrushes.

Yellow-browed or Hume's WarblerMerlin

(For interest this YB/Hume's Warbler was taken at ISO3200 in murky drizzle! Amazing these modern digital cameras!)

Ed. I suppose I have to call this bird an inconclusive Yellow-browed/Hume's, certainly a recent Hume's on Scilly does not look too dissimilar if not a bit brighter! You live and learn - if only it had called!

Posted October 24th, 2012 at 4:56 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

Slapton Ley

Female Ring-necked Duck still present in the same spot, 2 Firecrests (one at Torcross in with the LTT flock, one in Slapton Village near the phone box), 20+ Goldcrests, Wheatear on the beach, 12+ Chiff-Chaffs. Viewing trick in brisk NE wind.

Posted October 24th, 2012 at 4:19 pm by David Cope in Bird News

Start and Prawle

Started off 0815 at Start, where Bob Burridge had been collecting Redwing corpses (plus a Dunlin) from near the lighthouse after another foggy night. Few birds around the Point track in a rising E wind but the back valley and cliffside scrub on the south side were more productive with 6+ Ring Ouzels, 50+ Blackbirds and 200+ Redwings plus a few Song Thrushes and Fieldfares. A Merlin hunting the area and a ringtail Hen Harrier near the radio masts. Two distant  geese flying over near the masts may have been Barnacle.

 Did not reach Prawle until lat am  by which time birds seemed more dispersed there, saw Ring Ouzel by carpark and 10+ Goldcrest in Reserve but no sign of today's Firecrest seen by another observer or of yesterday's Yellow-browed Warbler. At Pigs Nose valley another 3-4 Ring Ouzels and some movement eastward of thrushes up the valley including dozens of Blackbirds. Two Egyptian Geese in flight over Airfield.

Posted October 24th, 2012 at 4:11 pm in Bird News

Torbay on the water!

Torbay 11.00 - 13.10hrs

Not a good day to be out on the water in the bay, big swell and building. In the 7 Quarries area had 17 Grey Herons on the cliffs with a mixed group of Shag and Cormorants, and a Raven enjoying the stiff NE wind.

6 Common Scoter in mid bay flying north and also a Great Northen Diver flying S to N across bay. Off Berry Head 20+ Gannets and 600+ Guillemots on cliffs, swell getting bad, turned and went back into brixham. going again sunday morning doing wildlife/bird trip!!!  

nigel Smallbones

Posted October 24th, 2012 at 4:06 pm by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News

Berry Hd

Good overhead migration during 2hrs this morning mostly heading NE: 639 Chaffinches, 5 Brambling, 7 Siskin, 5 Greenfinch, 200+ Goldfinch,17 Linnet, 23 Skylark, 75 Starling, 235+ Redwing, 2 Fieldfare, 23 Song Thrush, 80 Jackdaw, 112 Meadow Pipits, 31 alba Wagtails & 2 Grey Wagtail.

Around the headland lots of Blackbirds, 12 Goldcrests, 4 Chiffchaff (including one very buffy/grey tristis like bird in quarry sadly non calling), 1 Firecrest and 2-3 Black Redstarts in quarry.

Posted October 24th, 2012 at 3:18 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Wrafton

Couldn't see the female Shoveler that was here a couple of days ago, but a female Pintail has joined the male Gadwall. Calling Cetti's and Water Rail.

Posted October 24th, 2012 at 12:38 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Common Scoter - Downend

Very low light levels early yesterday morning & this morning

for digiscoping so this pic is the best I could manage of the

Common Scoters at Downend


Posted October 24th, 2012 at 11:57 am by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Tuesday 23rd October 2012

Berry Head

Dense fog, ENE f. 2  0815 1000

Despite all the Black redstarts elsewhere, only one found it's way to the 'Head', and was found by the coastguard station. Singles of Curlew, Lapwing and Redpoll heard going over while down in the quarry was a Firecrest. Plenty of Redwing here also but the fog made any sort of count difficult, perhaps 150+, numbers even exceeding the amount of dogs. 

 

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 11:39 pm by John Lusher in Bird News

English Channel 30nm SE of Berry Head

From an angling boat 30nm out where clear, although from Dartmouth to 25nm out was foggy. Attending boat were: c150 large gulls (mainly Lesser and Great Black-backs), Common Gull, 2 Black-headed Gulls (long way out for them!), 8 Kittiwakes, 2 Fulmars, 12 Bonxies. There was constant passage of common migrants which included: Blackbirds, Starlings, Robin, Chaffinchs, Chiffchaff and Goldcrests (two of which landed on the boat, one even coming into the cabin). The perils of making this crossing in daylight were highlighted, as both gulls and Bonxies were seen chasing and catching (and gobbling down) some weak unid'd passerines which were flying close to the sea!

Highlight for me today was four Risso's Dolphins feeding in the same area, although wary of the boat so keeping a distance and occasionally spectaculary breaching.

BonxieBonxie

Risso's Dolphin

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 10:12 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

Belated sightings from Aveton Gifford

Friday 19th October 

A single Glossy Ibis flew north over the tidal road at around 14:00. Also 2 Green Sand and 4 Common Sand in the area

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 9:58 pm by Steve Votier in Bird News

Ring Necked Duck- Slapton

The female Ring Necked Duck still present late afternoon, in the most inconvenient place for viewing possible! After a long time searching, it suddenly appeared at the top of the lower ley and just outside the channel, viewable from the viewing platform by the bridge, and slightly away from the Tufted Duck flock. It could then be seen at closer range looking through/over the reeds, 100 yards down the path alongside the lower ley before once again dissapearing, presumably back into the reeds. Also a Kingfisher present.

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 7:07 pm by Mark Bailey in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 15:00 till 17:00

on walk down to the hide a brambling over the lane heading towards darts farm also 2 groups of redwing 90-100+ in each group, 7+ Fieldfares, from the hide 1 curlew sandpiper, 2 golden plover, 2 juv ruff,  800+ black tailed godwits, 14+ bar tailed godwits, 60+ dunlin, 6+ greenshanks, good numbers of snipe 62+ showing before I arrived  ( thanks to Gary Clayden) , popped to the viewing platform another group of 80+ redwing over 2 jay 

Another  look from hide produced 40+ lapwing , 70+ wigeon, 3 pochard and still 40+ snipe showing on far side from the hide 2 more jay, by the feeders 2 nuthatch showed well with a treecreeper and coal tit 

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 7:07 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Dawlish Warren & Exe Estuary

Arriving at Dawlish Warren this afternoon too late for the Bonaparte's Gull on the beach (it has moved off north and couldn't be relocated), I had to be content with 3 Eiders (2 ad drakes) and c70 Common Scoters offshore.

Inside the estuary, off Cockwood and Powderham, late afternoon: Slavonian Grebe, 3 Little Grebes, 12 Mergansers, 2 ad Med Gulls, 2 Sandwich Terns, 6 Greenshank and Spotted Reshank. The last was just north of the Kenn outlet and is presumably last winter's bird that frequented the same area.

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 6:21 pm by Dave Smallshire in Bird News

Westleigh/southcottmarsh

 

16 med gulls following plough in stubble at westleigh,n.devon.12 adult,3 sw,fw along with 1000+ black headed,13:00-13:45.Green sandpiper,5 med gulls 3ad,1sw,fw at southcott marsh,bideford,15:00.

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 4:07 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Start Point

Mist/Fog, Wind E/NE 2-3   07.00 - 14.30  Mist lifted 13.00

 A good fall this morning, met Bob Burridge who arrived at 07.00 found hundreds of thrushes around the lighthouse, flocks of Redwings moving up the headland. I arrived at 09.00, birds everywhere, Song Thrushes and Redwings mainly. Thrushes moved through by 11.30. Highlight was the minimum 21 Black Redstarts (9 around the lighthouse, 2 at the farm, 3 on the telegraph buildings and 7 around the cliffs), also a Woodcock flew out of the bracken near the lighthouse and a late Hobby. A classic late October fall, really enjoyable birding.

Totals: Redwing 600+, Song Thrush 400+, Blackbird 150+, Robin 60+, Back Redstart 21+, Blackcap 15+, Chiff-Chaff 12+, Starling 100 around the light, Hobby, Woodcock, Goldcrest 15+, Swallow 10+, Chaffinch 60+, Fieldfare , Mistle Thrush,  Ring Ouzel, Whinchat, Wheatear, Redstart, Yellow Wagtail, Brambling, several dead thrushes sadly around the lighthouse. 

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 4:04 pm by David Cope in Bird News

Froward Point

08.00-15.00. Foggy with a light easterly first thing, slowly clearing. 4 Little Egret E., 1 Mute Swan E., 1 Merlin, 100+ Woodpigeon, 20+ Swallow E., 50+ Robin, 7 Black Redstart (3 around the buildings above the point, 1 at the point, 3 incl. 1 male above Froward Cove), 1 Common Redstart (Froward Cove), 1 Whinchat (Daymark), 2 Stonechat (Old Mill Bay), 50+ Song Thrush, 300+ Redwing, 1 Mistle Thrush, 2 Fieldfare, 100+ Blackbird, 2 Ring Ouzel (incl. 1 male, Froward Cove), 20+ Blackcap, 1 Lesser Whitethroat (in Sycamores east of the buildings above the point), 20+ Chiffchaff, 50+ Goldcrest, 3 Coal Tit, 10+ Great Tit, 50+ Chaffinch W., 30+ Siskin E. Thrush counts conservative as lots of movement.

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 3:50 pm in Bird News

River Caen/River Taw

1200-1500hrs. 1 Merlin, 2 Fieldfare, Buzzard, 50+ Medow Pipit, 1 Skylark, 100+ Starling, 41 Redshank, 2 Greenshank, 14 Stock Dove, 25+ Lapwing,10 Linnet and 6 Little grebe. Isley Marsh held good numbers of Curlew and Wigeon, 3 Spoonbill and 2 Shelduck.

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 3:42 pm by John hunt in Bird News

Bonaparte's Gull.

BONAPARTES GULL, refound today at 1214, mainly ranging between groyne 14 and the RNLI lookout. Top Bird!

Cheers and good birding.

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 2:23 pm by Kevin Bainbridge in Bird News

Exmouth

2 Scaup present at Mudbank Lane close to railway line looking towards town.

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 2:14 pm by Terry Smith in Bird News

Ford Park Cemetery, Plymouth

I found two Black Redstarts, a male and a female in the cemetery this morning in the field behind the visitor centre. Could these be the same birds as last year?

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 10:42 am by Laurie Allnatt in Bird News

Common Scoter - Downend

8 Common Scoters (2 males + 6 females) at Downend early this morning diving for molluscs

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 10:17 am by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Beer

No sign of Long-eared Owl this morning in a quick walk around the Beer Cemetery Fields, but lots of birds about with 40 Blackbird, 25+ Redwing, 10 Song Thrush, 1 Fieldfare and 1 Brambling.

Posted October 23rd, 2012 at 10:08 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Monday 22nd October 2012

Salcombe

Four Fieldfare eating yew berries in the Shadycombe Cemetery this morning.

(Charles Rowse)

Posted October 22nd, 2012 at 10:14 pm in Bird News

Soar

08:10-17:30. Malborough - Furzedown / East Soar / Starehole and back.

Cloudy, grey day. L NE wind and very light drizzle early morning both decreasing through day.

Adding to Rob's post, heard the Green Sandpiper near the car park, Golden Plover, 2 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 130 Redwings ( mostly around top of Starehole sheep track ), 40 Song Thrush,( also 30 Malborough to Furzedown ) 2 Ring Ouzels ( Starehole - different  to Robs ), 8 Chiffchaffs, only 1 Jay, 2 Siskins and a Reed Bunting.

Highlight was 2 Hawfinches gorging on Haws in the East Soar Willows from around 15:00-15:30. Thought only one bird present but when it flew out it was joined by a second bird and they flew off high east over the farm.Additionally Eric Wotton saw presumably yesterdays Yellow-browed Warbler in the willows.

Hawfinch, one of two, East Soar Willows
Hawfinch, one of two, East Soar Willows

Bird impression of Homer Simpson at an all you can eat buffet.
Bird impression of Homer Simpson at an all you can eat buffet.

Posted October 22nd, 2012 at 7:31 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Forsters tern - Isley Marsh.

Ian Taylor reported to both myself today and John Wicks on saturday that he had a possible Forsters Tern at Isley Marsh on Saturday 20th. I know no more details than that. He was asking for others to confirm or otherwise. I believe he reported the same to other N.Devon birders.

Posted October 22nd, 2012 at 7:06 pm by Maurice Clements in Bird News

RN Duck

Thanks to Alan for posting the photos. Looking at these and my notes would suggest this bird is an adult  female, not a juv, as it shows a distinct pale band on the bill and a pale breast spur (which juveniles lack).

Posted October 22nd, 2012 at 6:58 pm by David Cope in Bird News

Froward Point

09.10-14.30. 1 Ring Ouzel by the last gate to the point, 1 Whinchat in Froward Cove, 1 Brambling over west (heard only), 10 Crossbill low east (4 males) over Froward Cove, then five back west later.1 Wheatear at Higher Brownstone.

Posted October 22nd, 2012 at 6:55 pm in Bird News

Slapton Ley

a record of DC's R-N Duck at Slapton this afternoon.




Posted October 22nd, 2012 at 6:12 pm by Alan Doidge in Bird News

Sharkham Point

A late afternoon walk was pretty birdless except for a Firecrest near to the zig zag path 

Posted October 22nd, 2012 at 6:11 pm by Josh Marshall in Bird News

East Soar to Soar Mill Cove

Seven hours in the field highlighted by 3 ring ouzels, 2 firecrests in East Soar willows & female merlin.

Movements included 650 woodpigeons mainly west & 175 starlings heading east. Three Egyptian geese appeared to come in off the sea!! Water rail below East Soar.

Big thrush influx: 108 blackbirds, 29 song thrushes & 24 redwings.

Also: 110 skylarks, 45 meadow pipits, 57 robins, blackcap, 5 chiffchaffs, 9 goldcrests, 110 carrion crows, 85 chaffinches (sev. bramblings also), 100 goldfinches, 310 linnets in three flocks, 3 bullfinches & 7 cirl buntings.

Posted October 22nd, 2012 at 6:00 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Slapton Ley

I don't really do ducks but found a juvenile Ring-necked Duck late morning, right at the north end of the lower Ley not far from the bridge, in with a small group of female/juv Tufteds, seemed quite settled, there later in the afternoon also, sometimes goes into the reeds. Alan took some shots of it so hopefully upload one later. Otherwise fairly quiet, several flocks of Siskins going north and a Firecrest at Street Gate.

Posted October 22nd, 2012 at 5:37 pm by David Cope in Bird News

Sunday 21st October 2012

Bonaparte's Gull

At Dawlish Warren this afternoon (3.45pm), I saw an interesting- looking gull on the beach near groyne 14. Similar to a Black Headed, but key differences were black bill, big black smudge behind the eye, grey nape, slightly darker grey mantle/wings and pink legs. In flight, similar to BH with black primaries and a white wedge. Several BH gulls about for close comparison. Checked the field guide: Bonaparte's gull- a lifer for me!

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 8:59 pm by Stephen Edwards in Bird News

Soar

Had a very casual family stroll around East Soar this afternoon. Best i saw was a lone Wheatear and a Merlin perched in the big ploughed field near the car park which had a half hearted go at a passing Red Admiral.At 15:30 my ex friend Bob Burridge continued his purple patch by having a Serin fly over the cafe with me blissfully unaware inside it.

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 8:47 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Soar

Birding from 07:35 with Steve Cox. Little vis mig but 59 Alba Wagtails east and c700 Wood Pigeons & c25 Stock Doves over. Some Thrush numbers up - c20 Song Thrushes and 5+ Redwings but low Blackbird numbers and no Ouzels.

Best birds were a Yellow-browed Warbler (found by Dave Cope) in E. Soar willows and a Richard's Pipit (found by Bob Burridge) in set aside at Bolberry.

Also - 1 Firecrest (Steve); c120 Skylarks; 19 Goldcrests; 4 Bramblings; 9 Chiffchaffs; 5 Blackcaps; 11 Siskins; 200+ Linnets; 2 Wheatears; and 1 Whichat. 

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 6:40 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from the hide 09:20 till 13:30

a very good morning with the juv curlew sandpiper, 1 juv ruff, 4 golden plover were the first of the autumn, 819+ black tailed godwits was a great sight they were flushed many times by at least 2 sparrowhawks, 2 kestrel and 3+ buzzards, 44 avocets, 21+ bar tailed godwits, 120+ dunlin, 100+ redshank,  4 greenshanks, 41+ lapwing, 15+ snipe, 7+ little egret, 5+ little grebe, 3 pochard, 4 tufted duck, 103+ wigeon, 2 Cetti's warblers, 2 blackcaps , 40+ teal,  4+ shoveler 6+ pied wagtails. 

There was good movement north / north west with 19+ jay and 886+ jackdaw including groups of 180+, 170+ and 135+ with the peak  between 11:00 and 12:30 , 120+ starling , 200+ wood pigeon 2 redpoll , also over severall Siskin and chaffinch groups. 

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 5:48 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Beesands Ley

This is a real negative post, did the WeBS count this morning and it consisted of 2 Mute Swans, 3 Cormorants and  a Moorhen. Can't help thinking there is something badly wrong with the water quality at present. Hopefully just connected with the recent heavy rainfalls bringing something naff in off the fields but i'm no ecologist. At least i can put in a big fat zero for Canada Goose !

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 5:24 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Powderham to Turf, Exe estuary

WeBS count started at 8.50 on a really pleasant morning. Few waders; curlew 45, bar-tailed godwit 3 and c20 oystercatcher. Similarly water fowl numbers low: 8 brents (including only one juv) and a few mallard. On the sea wall there was a good selection of birds including - one kingfisher, one wheatear, 7 pied wagtails, c40 meadow pipits, 3 reed buntings, c30 goldfinches, 2 green finches, 2 robins, one stonechat and 3 dunnocks. Overhead c20 jackdaws, a few skylarks, one redpoll and one jay.

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 4:50 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Ernesettle Creek- Plymouth

The Lesser Yellowlegs still showing very well in creek early afternoon viewable from slipway by football pitch, it then flew back down the creek, towards the main Redshank flock by the wrecked boat. Also, 5 Greenshank.

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 3:59 pm by Mark Bailey in Bird News

Plymouth.

The Lesser Yellowlegs showed well this morning. The 'shank roost is on small islands in the middle of the creek and as the tide fell most of the birds moved quite a way upriver. After half an hours searching I got onto the bird on the Tamerton side of the creek.

This is the second record for Plymouth following a bird also at Ernesettle in 1954. That one was the second for Devon barely two weeks behind the first.

Also here was one, maybe two, Spotted Redshank.

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 3:22 pm by R.McCarthy in Bird News

River Caen/River Taw

1030-1300hrs.     2 Kingfisher,5 Little grebe,5 Greenshank,20+ Redshank,11 Lapwing,100+ Starling,3 Teal and 10+Medow pipit. Isley marsh held 6 Spoonbill, 11 Little egret 6 Heron and good numbers of Curlew and Wigeon.

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 2:17 pm by John hunt in Bird News

Berry Head

08.30 - 10.30 (Before the Police helicopter arrived and hovered over the headland for nearly an hour!)

45 Redwing, Song Thrush, 100+ Skylark in one flock, single Brambling, 6 Bullfinch, 7 Goldfinch, 9 Chaffinch, 20+ Meadow Pipit, 6 alba Wagtail, 10 LT Tit, 2 Coal Tit, 2 Chiffchaff, 15 Goldcrest and a fly by GN Diver from the Lighthouse.

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 2:04 pm by Bill Macdonald in Bird News

Exmouth

Orcombe Point - 0730 - 1130 - 1 lapwing, 3 brambling, 2+ chiffchaff, 3+ siskin, c200+ woodpigeon, 22+ chaffinch, c20+ alba wagatail, c100+ meadow pipit, 1 song thrush, 1 collared dove, 14+ goldcrest, 22 starling, 25+ goldfinch, c200+ jackdaw, 1 prob snow bunting @ 0842, 1+ swallow, 1+ coal tit, 2 great spotted woodpecker, 1 serin, 1 stonechat and c30+ skylark.

Another good morning with counts fairly rough and conservative as I covered a lot of ground this morning. The undoubted highlight was a serin that I picked up as it flew fairly low west across a nice little area of wasteground behind Sandy Bay caravan park. It may actually have come up out of this field. A repeated 'tu' was either snow or lap bunt. It was coupled with a more nasal call that I failed to transcribe but certainly wasn't like any lap I've heard before. 

jackdaw flock
jackdaw flock

serin - field notes
serin - field notes

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 12:55 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

vis. mig. in Dousland

c300 Redwings over this am towards Princetown. Many small flocks of 20-50. 5 in garden briefly, then 20 in rowan next door. They moved quickly on as rowan has been bare for a couple of weeks, the blackbirds have seen to that!

(Rob & Maureen Harrison)

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 11:43 am in Bird News

North Devon - Bursdon Moor

Saturday 20th October

Clear cold conditions with excellent visibility.

Evening to dusk - 1 Short eared Owl;  3 Merlins and 1 Barn Owl.

Observer - Barry Bryne.

Posted October 21st, 2012 at 8:34 am by Harvey Kendall in Bird News

Saturday 20th October 2012

Aveton Gifford

A Barn Owl crossed the road south of Aveton Gifford at dawn. Thereafter an enjoyable day with Pete birding East, Middle and West Soar; see Pete's post. Apologies for disrupting Pete's run of class finds.

Posted October 20th, 2012 at 9:01 pm by Steve Young in Bird News

Soar & Plymouth

Steve Young & I started the day with a Green Sandpiper (presumably the one first reported by Perry) calling near the car park at dawn. A modest movement early on included 420 Wood Pigeons (conservative estimate), 200+ Starlings, and 42 Alba Wagtails (plus 30 grounded).

Otherwise: 1 or 2 Firecrests (E.Soar willows); 1 male Ring Ouzel (near the copse); 1 Merlin; 2 Siskins; 2 Whinchats; 250+ Jackdaws; 37 Goldcrests; 7 Chiffchaffs; ; c100 Skylarks; 8+ Jays; 4 Song Thrushes; 2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers; 60 Swallows; 2 House Martins; 17 Stock Doves.

On the way home saw the Lesser Yellowlegs in Ernesettle Creek, Plymouth 5.20pm to 6.05pm. Viewed from the Plymouth side frequenting both sides of the river about 800m up stream from the bridge.

Posted October 20th, 2012 at 8:39 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from the hide from 09:00 till 11:30

the juv curlew sandpiper again showed well amongst 114+ dunlin, 26+ bar tailed godwit, 5+ greenshanks, 59+ avocet, 600+ black tailed godwits, 3 pochard(2m,1f) , 4 tufted duck , 2 shoveler, 2 Cetti's warbler, 11+ snipe, 7 jay and a good passage of jackdaw with 620+ moving north west, 4+ redpoll, 7+ Siskin, 100+ redshank.

but best bird had to be a very showy treecreeper in the tree to left of the hide the first I have seen in the 3 years watching the site. 

Posted October 20th, 2012 at 5:57 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Glossy Ibis Aveton Gifford

One immature feeding in the salt marsh and on Avon Estuary yesterday at Bridge End [Neil Cooper]

Posted October 20th, 2012 at 5:38 pm by Steve Waite in Bird News

North Hallsands / Start Point

Had a call from Alan Searle to say he caught and ringed a Yellow-browed Warbler and Firecrest at North Hallsands this morning. Snow Bunting still at Start Point ( in the car park ) late morning ( Alan Doidge ).

Posted October 20th, 2012 at 2:09 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Berry Head

 07.45 - 10.30.

 Had a walk to Berry Head. 1 Ring Ouzel just before Landscove holiday camp by road side also 3 roe deer in field. On BH 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker on steel mast at coastguard station, 3 Harbour Porpoise and 800+ guillemots on seabird colony cliffs, no telescope to do proper count!! Could only find 3 Cirl Buntings, 2 male and 1 young bird. 

Posted October 20th, 2012 at 11:59 am by nigel Smallbones in Bird News

Start Point

07:00-09:00.

70% cloud cover, mod S wind. Had a couple spare hours first thing so went to Start to try a bit of vis mig. On arrival a Snipe called and a Tawny Owl could be heard in the farm. Vis. mig started at 07:25 and the following flew south up to 08:30:

Sparrowhawk, Great Spotted Woodpecker, 170 Meadow Pipits, 90 'alba ' Wagtails, 19 Swallows, 410 Goldfinch, 330 Chaffinch, 100 Linnet, 9 Brambling, 9 Siskin, 11 Greenfinch, 13 Bullfinch ( largest flock 7 ) and 2 Crossbill. 380 Woodpigeon flew south west furthur inland in 3 flocks ( others likely to have been missed ). Movement petered out by 08:30 but a few things seemed to be passing again when i had to leave at 09:00.

A nice surprise when leaving was finding a nice Snow Bunting tucked in by the side of the road just uo from the car park, typically tame.

Snow Bunting
Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting
Snow Bunting

Posted October 20th, 2012 at 10:43 am by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Friday 19th October 2012

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 09:00 till 13:45

impressive numbers of black tailed godwits with 750+ , 21+ bar tailed godwits, 60+ avocet, still 1 juv curlew sandpiper showed well at times, a juv ruff dropped in along with 100+ dunlin, 7 greenshanks, 3 pochard, 3 tufted duck, at least 26+ jay moving north, 2 sparrowhawks, kestrel, 3+ buzzard, 2 nuthatch, 1 coal tit, 1 great spotted woodpecker, a few meadow pipits and alba wagtails over, 5+ goldcrests

from the viewing platform 8 grey plover, the kingfisher was seen by a couple of visiting birders, 9 long tailed tits, 4 chiffchaffs

Posted October 19th, 2012 at 8:09 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Soar

08:40-16:30. Furzedown / SM Cove / Warren / Starehole / E Soar.

Lovely still autumn day.

Golden Plover, 3 Great Spotted Woodpecker, Collared Dove ( Higher Soar ), 40 Blackbirds, 30 Song Thrush, Ring Ouzel ( hedgerow opp cafe ), 14 Chiffchaff, 52 Goldcrest, Firecrest ( SM Cove wilows ), Coal Tit, c250 Jackdaw ( mid and east Soar ), 16 Jays ( largest flock 9 SE over SM Cove ), 18 Siskin, 6 Crossbill ( 5 SE over SM Cove, 1 SE over Starehole Valley ) and 3 Reed Buntings.

Posted October 19th, 2012 at 6:12 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

Attempted to walk to Turf via the western path from the RSPB car park but was beaten by waterlogged fields near to Turf...(too deep even for welly boots) although water levels said to be dropping!  The road to the canal continues to be submerged at 'the bends' to depth of approx 12 inches.   Good numbers of Wigeon, Teal, and Lapwing present and also an estimated 8 Water Rail on the marsh.    Whooper Swan present at northern end. Total of 37 species seen.

DBWPS Members intending to attend fieldtrip to Exminster on Monday 22 Oct please note that  welly boots will be essential. Unless water levels drop in interval a limited walk is planned.

Posted October 19th, 2012 at 4:08 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Froward Point

07.55-12.20. Ring Ouzel (Old Mill Bay) and Firecrest (Froward Point). Also Golden Plover south, 2 Reed Bunting west and 4 Jay east over FP this morning.

Posted October 19th, 2012 at 3:11 pm in Bird News

Sharkham Point

Ring Ouzel in 'combe lake valley'. Got some record shots but there really not worth posting!

Posted October 19th, 2012 at 1:19 pm by Josh Marshall in Bird News

Dartmoor

Report of 12 Fieldfare at Sherberton Common on Wednesday (Bill & Grace McOwan).

Yesterday, 18th A Merlin, Stonechats and a male Wheatear near Headland Warren Farm and plenty of Redwings and Mistle Thrushes at Shallowford (Rob & Maureen Harrison).

Posted October 19th, 2012 at 12:54 pm in Bird News

Axe Cliff

Despite promising looking conditions at dawn, 'vis mig' never really got going at Axe Cliff this morning. Now I've got home it seems to have picked up though - probably because the weather has cleared a bit.

Totals; 22 Wood Pigeon, 40 Skylark (plus c200 on deck), 30 Mipits, 19 alba Wagtail, 21 Jackdaw, 3 Jay (flew n), 28 Starling, 55 Chaffinch, 22 Linnet (plus 60 grounded), 12 Goldfinch, 11 Siskin, 1 Redpoll sp. and 2 Reed Bunting.

In the Undercliff below, Ring Ouzel again (looked like the same bird as Monday although in a different place) and 15+ Goldcrest.

Posted October 19th, 2012 at 11:13 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Berry Head

Bright clear morning with light winds from around N. At 945 4 Jays circling high over the Coastguard, eventually flew off southwest. Light passage of Meadow Pipits, Skylarks and alba wagtails coasting northward. Also a Great Spotted Woodpecker  unusually in a small bush on the clifftop ,near the Coastguard.

Met an observer who reported seeing a Hen Harrier  over rear of the headland yesterday.

Posted October 19th, 2012 at 11:10 am in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

First Lapwings of the autumn (10 birds). 4 Wheatear, 4 Ravens. A small movement of Woodpigeons (around 30 birds in total). Skylarks up to around 100 birds, Meadow Pipits dificult to judge as wide but thinly spread across the site - probably about 40 in all.

Posted October 19th, 2012 at 10:47 am in Bird News

Thursday 18th October 2012

Hope's Nose

07:30-14:15  SSW5 Good visibility, patchy cloud, dry but showers as I left at c.14.30

All south: Sooty 4; Manx 1; Balearic 11; Bonxie 10; Arctic skua 7; Arctic tern 1; Sandwich 8; GND 1 sp; Fulmar 1; Med gull 2w; Little gull 1w; Barwit 1; Scaup 2ff; Common scoter 13; Kittiwake 358 (count on clicker); Gannet c.200; Razorbill c.150; Guillemot c.30; Common gull 5; Black-headed gull 98 (not sure if this was a local movement but all during first few hours). 

 

Posted October 18th, 2012 at 10:32 pm in Bird News

Around the exe

Bowling green marsh 08:45 till 09:45

1 curlew sandpiper  30+ dunlin, 21+ bar tailed godwits, 11 greenshanks, 3 Pochards,2 tufted duck, 10+ snipe, good numbers of black tailed godwits too much movement to get a good count 

powderham marsh 10:00 till 11:00

very quiet just 1 kingfisher and stonechat of note

Matford marsh 11:30 till 12:15

2 green sandpipers, 1 little grebe, 3 little egrets, 9+ shoveler, 50+ wigeon & teal 

 

Posted October 18th, 2012 at 10:10 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Cowley - Exeter

Barnacle goose seen twice today with three Canada and one Greylag goose on the field south of Cowley bridge, on Cowley side. First seen at 8:45am and still present at 1:30pm 

Posted October 18th, 2012 at 9:20 pm by Joe Martin in Bird News

Berry Head

F6-7 SSW, mostly dry; occ shws p.m. MD & IL. Seawatch 07:15 - 15:30. Passage mostly S

1 diver sp, 1 Fulmar, 565 Gannet, 16 C Scoter, 2 Scaup, 12 Sooty, 25 Balearic & 3 Manx Shearwater, 18 Bonxie, 8 Arctic Skua, 492 Kittiwake, 36 B-h Gull, 1 C Gull, 1 Little Gull, 8 S Tern, 6 Turnstone, 1 Dunlin & 1 Bar-wit, 205 'razormots', 1 Puffin.

Also 2 H Martin, a few Swallow, Goldfinch and Linnet 'in off'.

Bushes: 13 Chiffchaff, 12 Goldcrest, 2 Coal Tit

Posted October 18th, 2012 at 9:09 pm by Ivan Lakin in Bird News

Hope's Nose - 15th Oct

A friend of mine visiting the Nose on Monday 15th saw a Yellow-browed Warber with Long-tailed Tit flock. A new bird or the one we saw back on 8th still there?

Posted October 18th, 2012 at 7:57 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

East Soar

0930-1400.  3 Ring Ouzel 1F 2M, 1 Cirl Bunting, 1 Yellowhammer, 2 Kestrel, 1 Willow Warbler, Swallows still,  2 Whinchat, 2Stonechat.

Ring Ouzel at East Soar

Posted October 18th, 2012 at 7:31 pm in Bird News

River Caen/River Taw

1330-1630hrs   1 Greenshank,17+Redshank,3 Little grebe,3 Teal,20+Dunlin,200+Wigeon,100+Curlew,100+Starling,Kestrel and a Buzzard.

Posted October 18th, 2012 at 6:34 pm by John hunt in Bird News

East Soar

Ring ouzel in hedge on north side of farm.

Little else!

Posted October 18th, 2012 at 12:20 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Wednesday 17th October 2012

Dawlish warren

Watched from 07:10 till 13:35

1 black throated diver, 2 great skua, 70+ dunlin, 5 sanderling, 1 knot, 7 grey plover, 3 wheatear,  3 sandwich terns, a surprise find was a little tern in the bight, 2 jay, 5+ chiffchaffs, 1 great spotted woodpecker, 2 stonechats, 2 goldcrests. 

Posted October 17th, 2012 at 8:34 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Berry Head

07:00-18:00 (11 hrs).  F6-7 SSW, dry, good vis. MD, BHe, IL, DN, DS and occ other obs in attendence.  Passage mostly south, with some returns or looping north. All obs totals:

1 assumed Yelkouan-type at 12:15-12:19 & again 14:26-14:32 (when better views). 8 Sooty, 19 Balearic & 9 Manx Shearwaters. 4 Fulmar; 28 Bonxie, 9 Arctic & 1 Pomarine Skua. 2 G N Diver (north), 1 G C Grebe, 10 C Scoter, 2 S Tern.

No overall counts for Gannets, though accelerated from just 1 in first half hr to 260 during an evening half hr.  Hundreds Kitiwakes through all day; no Sabs. 

Oddities: 1 Coal Tit briefly on cliff-side at end point. 1 Turnstone, 1 Oyc. V little overhead passerine movement today.

Posted October 17th, 2012 at 7:56 pm by Ivan Lakin in Bird News

Hartland Point/Shipload Bay - Wednesday 17th

A walk around the area in very windy but mainly sunny conditions.

2 Lapland Buntings in flight over stubble, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 2 Ravens, 30+ Linnets, 1 Chiffchaff.   105 Herring Gull and 3 Great Black-backed Gulls on Shipload Bay Beach, 2 Bullfinches, 8+ Chaffinches and a steady westward passage of Gannets  - 40+ in two hours.

Harvey Kendall

Posted October 17th, 2012 at 3:19 pm by Harvey Kendall in Bird News

Tuesday 16th October 2012

Around the exe

Dawlish warren 07:10 till 10:45

70+ dunlin, 5 sanderling( 2 finger point 3 on beach) 4+ grey plover, 3+ bar tailed godwits, 5 Siskin over, 2 blackcaps, 3+ stonechats, 2 wheatears( on golf course) , 2 coal tits, 3+ goldcrests. 1 jay, kestrel, 3 redwing over, 1 snipe over warren point 

exminster marsh 11:30 till 12:30

the whooper swan was still viewable from station road towards the motorway bridge, unable to reach the canal path with station road flooded, 6 redwing along station road, 1 blackcap, 1 stonechat 

Posted October 16th, 2012 at 10:16 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Hillhead, Brixham

12.30-15.30; presumed male Ring Ouzel in the hedge at the bottom of the garden this lunchtime, gorging on Haws and showing well, also half a dozen Chiffchaff and a couple of Blackcap. Firecrest roughly in the same place on the 14th. SX907538

Posted October 16th, 2012 at 4:18 pm in Bird News

Black Redstart Budliegh Salterton

One Black Redstart seen in and around the childrens play area at the beach carpark at 10.45 onwards, female.

Posted October 16th, 2012 at 3:50 pm by Kevin Bainbridge in Bird News

Hartland point

Hartland Point Tuesday 0740-1000: 9 Manx Shearwater,19 Balearic Shearwater,1 Sooty Shearwater,100 Gannet,1 Cormorant,2 Arctic Skua,168 Kittiwake,850 auk sp. Reported by Dave Churchill for Malcombe Shakespeare.

Posted October 16th, 2012 at 2:36 pm by David & Gillian Churchill in Bird News

Aveton Gifford

A quick look at the higher reeaches of the Avon estuary turned up 4 greenshank,3 common sandpiper & kingfisher.

5 jays flew south in 20 minutes.

Posted October 16th, 2012 at 2:07 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Monday 15th October 2012

Around the exe

Dawlish warren 07:10 till 10:35

a quiet morning 32+ dunlin, 21+ bar tailed godwits, 2 black tailed godwit, 2 sanderling, 1 knot, 40+ turnstone, 10+ grey plover good numbers of wigeon and Brent geese, 3 redpoll, 12+ Siskin, 2 coal tits, 11+ long tailed tits, 1 great spotted woodpecker, 1 sandwich tern, 3 goldcrests, 2 wheatear

Goat walk topsham & viewing platform bowling green marsh 16:15 till 17:50

70+ avocet, 800+ black tailed godwits, 200+ dunlin, 3 greenshanks

Posted October 15th, 2012 at 8:32 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Soar

08:10-17:15. Malborough-Furzedown-East Soar and back.

Overnight rain, dry by morning with M-F W wind, increasing F-S and backing WSW mid afternoon.

Very quiet day. Little to add to Robs post but the sun briefly came out when i was in Starehole and 3 Ring Ouzels briefly appeared, 2 looked like males, one definate 1st winter fem. Did not notice any colour rings. Have attached a photo of the back of a what looked like a male ( flew right over me and landed as you see it ) It has some white markings on the nape. If anyone goes down to Starehole looking for ouzels in the coming days it will be interesting to see if or how long this distinctive bird stays  as it is never easy to tell how much of a chngeover there is in individuals over time here, especially in a big Ouzel year  ( plenty of berries in the valley at present so things maybe looking good.) Elsewhere just 2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers, 2 Blackcaps, 4 Chiffchaffs, 12 Goldcrest and a Siskin. A Crossbill flew west over Portlemore Barton on the walk out.

Ouzel with white marks on nape.
Ouzel with white marks on nape.

Posted October 15th, 2012 at 7:34 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

East Soar

Quiet after the weekend's fireworks and the highlight my first autumnal ring ouzel this morning, in Starehole.

Not much else apart from 760 woodpigeons over west, 2 swallow, whinchat and 7 jays moving through.

Bumped into Perry, probably update later.

Posted October 15th, 2012 at 2:06 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Dartmoor

c50 Redwing over West Shallowford and one Ring Ouzel seen.

Also Ring Ouzel near White Works and first Brambling returned to Princetown garden..

 

NB Will members please try to look out for colour rings on migrating Ring Ouzel and report their findings as mentioned on the website - many thanks.

Posted October 15th, 2012 at 12:53 pm in Bird News

Kingskerswell & East Soar

Four Redwings over Kingskerswell this morning, my first of the autumn.

Yesterday at East Soar the Wryneck eventually reappeared and showed well at 16.10 in the same place as previously described.

Posted October 15th, 2012 at 12:16 pm by Will Salmon in Bird News

Exminster marshes

The flood water has dropped and I was able to reach the canal bank on foot, although the water reached dangerously close to the top of my wellies. Viewing from the canal bank there were far fewer waders (it was low tide) and the waterfowl were well spread out. I did see 9 redshank, c30 black-tailed godwits (lots more on the northern part of the marsh), one greenshank, one ruff and 21 lapwing. Like Dave Smallshire (on Sunday) I saw a possible pec sandpiper on Saturday but today the small ruff was in the same place so possibly that is what I saw. The pintail flock was at least 38 and over 100 wigeon. Otherwise one grey wagtail and female type stonechat, both in the lane.

The whooper swan was reported to be north of the lane.

Posted October 15th, 2012 at 12:03 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Sunday 14th October 2012

Exminster Marshes in flood

This afternoon, viewing by scope from my granddaughter's bedroom in Exminster, I managed to see the Whooper Swan, a Black Swan (waddling across the estuary mud towards the Clyst channel, Bar-headed Goose, 2 Greylags, c40 Pintail among hundreds of Wigeon and Teal and fewer Mallard and Shoveler, c700 Black-tailed Godwits, 2 Ruff, c12 Dunlin, Redshank and c35 Avocets. There was also a smallish wader with a dark pectoral band (Pec???) briefly and a juvenile Herring Gull with extremely dark underside and pale head - I was in Toronto recently, and this bird looked remarkably like the juv American Herring Gulls there - but extreme distance meant no chance of confirmation. All but the Whooper and the gull were south of Swan's Nest lane.

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 10:36 pm by Dave Smallshire in Bird News

Soar & Thurlestone

Some interesting sightings at Soar today, Perry sat in the cafe drinking coffee,Steve 'twinkle toes' Young picking his way through the mud and a Wryneck!

Quick stop at Thurlestone marsh on the way home rewarded with a lingering female Marsh Harrier, 2 adult Med Gulls, 15+ Snipe, numerous Teal, Little Egret, Grey Heron, 2 Lapwing, lots of Meadow Pipits and Alba Wagtails.  

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 8:55 pm by Bill Macdonald in Bird News

East Soar

After phoning Perry I diverted the family walk to Bolt Head/Tail intending to scoop the easy Wryneck. Bill MacDonald directed me to the bird where he'd last seen it at 12.20 and - I couldn't find it! By 14.20 I had to admit defeat despite the help and good banter of Alan Doidge and Eric Wotton. Barefoot in the soggy fields of thistles and cow pats 'cos I forgot to pack my boots, I did come across a Dartford Warbler in the scrub bank between the hedge and the copse, which flew into the E. end of the copse, and a Grasshopper Warbler flushed from the juncus by the hedge, flying low to dive into the hedge. The female Merlin came overhead at 13.10, harrying a cloud of M'ipits and at 16.00 over East Soar Willows. Oh and Perry's Yellow-browed gave me the slip as well. Lovely day though.

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 7:00 pm by Steve Young in Bird News

Slapton and Prawle

The Wryneck was seen again at various times during the day along Slapton  beachfront , north of trhe bridge,  although I didn't catch up with it until later afternoon. A plea to photographers-this bird was being approached perhaps too closely at times-please give it some distance. Woodlark reported overhead early am and a Bittern reported from Strete Gate. A Grass Snake was sunbathing by the roadside.

At Prawle late am-early pm, some vis mig still happening including 300+Woodpigeon and  10-15 Stock Dove, a few Linnet and Meadow Pipit, 20+Siskin. Red Admiral butterflies very noticeable with 300+ seen. Roy Williams saw a ringtail Hen Harrier pass over eastward. Small numbers of Goldcrests around but still no Firecrests.  

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 6:52 pm in Bird News

Slapton Ley

A Wryneck was showing occasionally between the memorial and and the large logs on the beach, often on the foot path that runs along the top of the beach.

No sign of the Booted Warbler despite a number of birders around.

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 6:37 pm by Jacob Wood in Bird News

Slapton - Higher Ley

'Vis mig' lasted 08:00 ~ 10:45. 1920 Woodpigeon (S) with 7+ Stock Dove amongst them; 8 Jay (N), 22 Meadow Pipit (S/ SW), 37 Skylark (NE), 15+ Swallow (S), 1 House Martin (S), 183 Chaffinch (N), Brambling (3), 9 Siskin (N), 3 Lesser Redpoll (N), 20 Greenfinch (N), 75+ Linnet (mostly S) and 52 Goldfinch (mostly N).

Present: 3 Mistle Thrush, Kingfisher, 3 GS Woodpecker, 9 Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcap, 6 Goldcrest, Bullfinch.  

The Wryneck showed very well at times (left with birders grilling it >15:00) beside the beach/ road-side path, ranging from the memorial car-park to 400m N.  Easily and frequently flushed by walkers, but faithfully returned.

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 6:15 pm by Ivan Lakin in Bird News

Turnstone

One of the birds from Westward Ho! beach todat

Turnstone
Turnstone

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 5:49 pm by Steve Hatch in Bird News

Westward Ho!/ Northam beach

29 Golden plovers, 1 med gull and 4 turnstones in and around the rockpools today. Also 1 wheatear on the dunes.

Golden Plover
Golden Plover

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 5:47 pm by Steve Hatch in Bird News

River Caen/River Taw

1215-1500hrs   Good numbers of Swallows moving through,2 Greenshank, 5 Little grebe. 18 Lapwing,6 Gold finch,20+Linnet,1 Kingfisher a Raven and a Buzzard over. 18 Heron was a good count. Isley marsh held 2 Shell duck good numbers of Curlew 150+ Wigeon and 2 Spoonbill.

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 3:50 pm by John hunt in Bird News

Soar

06:50-13:30; Warren / Bolt Head / East Soar / Mid Soar.

Clear night, bright sunny day though light - moderate NW wind chilly first thing.

Got there before first light  to get out to the Warren to catch the vis. mig. Early start rewarded with a calling Green Sandpiper near the car park, perhaps an elusive resident at present as i heard one hear 10 days or so back. Also a Little Owl calling in the distance from the bunker direction - not seen one here for years so an encouraging record. The vis. mig never took off, best were 2 Brambling and a Lesser Redpoll, ( i've always called them Lesser by default but many more post like Matt's and i'll have to toe the line and go for Redpoll sp i guess ). Elsewhere saw the first woodpigeon movement of the year- 380 SE in three flocks ( early start this year ?)Great Spotted Woodpecker, 2 Grey Wagtails, 8 House Martins, 56 Swallows, 2 Wheatears, 2 Blackcaps, 12 Chiffchaffs, 21 Goldcrests, 13 Jays, 28 Siskins and a Reed Bunting. Loads of Skylarks and Linnets in the ploughed fields at Mid Soar.

 The days two highlights were yesterdays Wryneck showing well in the same place and a Yellow-browed Warbler in east Soar Willows. The one that got away was a wader, almost certainly a Buff-breasted Sandpiper or Ruff in a ploughed field at Mid -Soar, too distant and through a heat haze to know which. Did not get much closer when it took off with a load of Larks and i could not relocate it. Like the song by The Eels in Shrek said......' you just gotta let it go '.

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 2:47 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Berry Hd

0730 -1015hrs around headland: 1 Ring Ouzel (again below cafe on S facing slope), 1 Redwing, 10 Goldcrest, 23 Chiffchaff, 4 Blackcap, 5 Stonechat, 13 Robin. 2 flocks of Long-tailed Tits 19 in total.

Overhead; mostly moving NE: 1 Brambling, 11 Siskin, 3 Redpoll sp., 30+ Meadow Pipits, 6 Jay (high N), 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 18 Skylark, 55 Chaffinch, 6 Linnet, 34 Goldfinch, 7 Bullfinch, 7 Greenfinch, 3 Song Thrush, 6 Starling, 17 alba Wagtails, 25 Wood Pigeon.

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 1:07 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Exmouth

Orcombe Point - 0705 - 1130 - tonnes of birds this morning and as ever, counts of some species very conservative with birds moving west over a broad front: 26 robin, 120+ alba wagtail, c200+ meadow pipit, c200+ skylark, 35+ chaffinch, 2 brambling, 20+ goldfinch, 210+ woodpigeon (in several high flocks), 8 song thrush, 15+ blackbird, 3 redpoll sp, 1 lesser redpoll with presumed common redpoll (see photos), c150+ linnet, 10+ chiffchaff, 13+ siskin, 4+ greenfinch, 1 bullfinch, 3 jay, 3 stock dove, 3 starling, 3 great spotted woodpecker, 3 mallard, 100+ jackdaw, 2+ reed bunting, 2+ yellowhammer, 2 grey wagtail, 4 goldcrest, 1 late willow warbler, 3 blackcap, 3+ rook, 8 coal tit (high count), 2 snipe, 12 swallow and 1 stonechat. 

The presumed common redpoll (and lesser) landed close to me on weeds in the dung field. It was clearly a larger bird in direct side by side comparison, lacking the orange-brown wash to the flanks and exhibiting a whitish rump. I find redpolls a nightmare but it was at least nice to see the two together.

presumed common redpoll
presumed common redpoll

presumed common redpoll with lesser redpoll (left hand bird)
presumed common redpoll with lesser redpoll (left hand bird)

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 12:42 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

Saturday 13th October 2012

Slapton Ley Booted Warbler

At 14.45 I picked up a pale looking hippolais warbler approx 150 M north of the bridge on the eastern path of the higher Ley. Good views in bright sunlight it showed a shortish primary projection with only a hint of a wing panel, well marked head. It flew across to the other side of the higher Ley and was not seen there. On these first short but good views it looked likely to be a worn adult Melodious Warber but there were some niggling features: it looked on the small side, not a long bill and very pale below, many worn adults have some yellow on the throat, pale legs and the jizz was not typical of Melodious, it was flicking along the tops of the bushes and very active ( most Melodious are skulky and slow moving), also mid October is late for this species. I walked to Strete Gate pondering and on the reurn trip refound the bird at 16.05  in the same spot but this time with very good sustained close views as it was flycatching from the tops of the bushes, I managed to get a good set of notes and clinch the ID as BOOTED WARBLER, it has a well marked head, dark almost blackish sub-coronal/lateral crown stripe particularly in front of the eye and pale edged OTF's. It has a pure white throat and  shorter bill than Melod/Icky, pale lower mandible. No yellow tones at all. Ruled out Sykes Warbler.Didn't hear it calling.

I hope it sticks around 'til tomorrow, unfortunately I have promised to take my daughters shopping to Exeter so can't get there (joy). Best place to look is 100 - 200 metres along the path, although I suspect is is quite wide ranging as originally it did fly across the Ley.

Also present Wryneck, a bit further along the track, Whinchat, Female Marsh Harrier and a steady passage south of Swallows.

I

Posted October 13th, 2012 at 8:43 pm by David Cope in Bird News

East Soar

08.00 to 15.15 carefully avoiding Pete all day and so cunningly missing all the goodies but a lovely pair of Firecrests in Starehole Valley and the Merlin bombing over us from Bolberry as we drove off. Supporting stuff: Woodpigeon (150+ W.), Skylark (75+), Barn Swallow (2-3), House Martin (1), Meadow Pipit (75-100), White Wagtail(20+), Pied Wagtail (5+), Common Redstart (1 fem-type in low sycamores and ash west of farm), Whinchat (1 juv. near car park), Song Thrush (4 W. + 2 in low sycamores and ash west of farm), Blackcap (1 m. and 1 f.), Chiffchaff, (2-3), Goldcrest (10+), Jay (4 W. up out of Starehole Valley), Siskin (3 & 4 W. out of Starehole Valley), Linnet (40+ on airfield). My daughter has just told me no-one wants to read all this anyaway. She's right of course.

Posted October 13th, 2012 at 6:44 pm by Steve Young in Bird News

Slapton Ley

A quick visit to Slapton Ley early this afternoon was rewarded with good views of a female Marsh Harrier flying south over Lower Ley. Cetti's warbler and Chiffchaff also heard, with plenty of Tufted duck and a few Gadwall on the water.

Posted October 13th, 2012 at 6:22 pm by Edd Davies in Bird News

Soar

Birding 07:15 - 16:30. A guest appearance by Richard White and all the birds appeared! Little real movement but early on 100+ Alba Wagtails, 45 Chaffinches west, and 10 Siskins west. A Redstart at the top of Starehole and a Firecerest (first of autumn for me) in East Soar Willows. 

Then a purple patch around midday. Two Woodlarks over fields west of East Soar Farm. A Wryneck in the scrub patch below the copse (and for a short time in the hedge lower down next to the willows, before returning) - seen about 5 times between c11:45 and 13:15. Favouring the landward end by the area where the grass invades the scrub and seen several times in a small isolated hawthorn. Whilst standing here (@ c12:30) a Richard's Pipit flew west and disappeared over the Warren.

Otherwise: Redpoll sp 1, Whinchat 2, Chiffchaff 16, Goldcrest 10, Blackcap 1, Grey Wagtail 1, Wood Pigeon 200+, Song Thrush 4, Greenfinch 5, Stock Dove 2.  

A great day's birding!

Posted October 13th, 2012 at 5:57 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Bolberry/Soar Mill Cove

Wryneck in scrub adjacent to path to Southdown Farm but elusive. Also whinchat, 2 swallow, 200 linnet, 20+ siskin over west and 3 more jays.

Posted October 13th, 2012 at 4:26 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Clennon Valley

Cetti's Warbler still singing occasionally on 2nd pond, 2 Chiffchaff 5 Goldcrests 1 Blackcap.

On the Dart at Totnes this morning was a drake Mandarin, 1 Goosander and 3 Kingfishers.

 Mandarin Totnes 13 Oct 12

Posted October 13th, 2012 at 3:55 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Berry Head

Redstart in sycamores bordering meadow, Ring ouzel still down under cafe. 4 Blackcaps 10 Chiff Chaff 11 Linnets was all else I could find. Even hardpressed for Hirundines with just 6 Swallows by end of morning! 

 

Posted October 13th, 2012 at 12:57 pm by John Lusher in Bird News

Friday 12th October 2012

Around the exe

Orcombe point to sandy bay 08:00 till 11:30

A steady passage west this morning with 300+ meadow pipits, 27+ Siskin, 6+ redpoll, 120+ alba wagtails, 4 jays, 200+ swallows, grounded birds included 25+ goldcrests, 17+ chiffchaffs, sparrowhawk, kestrel.

bowling green marsh 14:45 till 17:10

1 juv curlew sandpiper, 1 garganey, 54+ dunlin, 20+ bar tailed godwit , 10 greenshanks, 1 pochard, 1 tufted duck, 50+ wigeon. 4 little egrets , 6+ little grebes

Posted October 12th, 2012 at 10:46 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Otter Head

Richard's Pipit still present today, Just a request to please avoid entering stubble fields to keep farmer on side. The bird is rarely using the stubbles and is very unwilling to show itself on the ground. It is most likely to be seen in flight (typical view below!) and is fairly vocal. However, you may get lucky in the rough grass adjacent to the stubbles and the coast path. Bird still frequenting area east of last pines on coast path from White Bridge.
Also today:
Redstart - 1
Swallow - steady movement west
Linnet - flock of at least 400 birds this evening
Merlin - 1 along coast path yesterday

Richard's Pipit
Richard's Pipit

Posted October 12th, 2012 at 7:56 pm by Chris Townend in Bird News

Soar

08:15-17:30; Malborough - Furzedown / S'thdown / SM Cove / E Soar / Starehole / Warren / Furzedown-M'borough.

Clear night, M-F NW wind, occ.showers some heavy. Hard going finding the sheltered spots today.

Merlin ( F, attacking Pipits Furzedown late afternoon ), 5 Golden Plover, Grey Wagtail, Swallow, 150 Skylark ( grounded ), 500 Meadow Pipits ( grounded ), 2 Whinchat, Redstart ( single Whinchat and the Redstart nr. the cafe - same as yours Rob ? ), 3 Blackcaps, 23 Chiffchaffs and 13 Goldcrests.

Posted October 12th, 2012 at 7:53 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Dawlish Warren

While carrying out some repair work to the mural at Dawlish Warren today managed to catch up with the following: Long-eared Owl (well done Lee C - thanks for the call), 4 Wheatear, 5 Sandwich Tern. Some movement > W  3-4 Brambling (photo of one just outside of the hide) 3 Redpoll, 1 Yellow Wagtail, 2 Grey Wagtail 22 alba Wagtail, 27 Swallows, 2 House Martin, 32 Skylark.

  Brambling Dawlish Warren 21 Oct 12LEO Dawlish Warren12 Oct 12 

Posted October 12th, 2012 at 7:16 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Exminster marshes

The flood water is impressive; covering most of the land north of the lane and half the fields to the south. The lane is impassable even in wellies past the Lion's Rest industrial estate. On arrival I was surprised to see 27 avocets flying over the flooded fields and land on one of the few areas of grass. They flew in and joined 200+ black-tailed godwits, 100+ dunlin, c80 redshank, 300+ curlew, 6 grey plover, 1 golden plover and c30 lapwing. Lots of duck and Canada geese. I failed to do an accurate count due to the spectacle of so many birds and having to help push cars out of the flood. I did see one bar-headed goose with the Canadas, 8+ pintail, c50 wigeon and one whooper swan - north of the lane with 8 mute swans. 

Earlier in the day I walked up to the Exminster golf course. A cirl bunting was singing next to the stubble field opposite the entrance to the golf course. Also in that field a few reed buntings, 12 skylarks, 10 swallows and c30 meadow pipits.

Yesterday a hobby over the village at 14.15.

Posted October 12th, 2012 at 5:56 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Beesands Ley

Bittern flew across the ley early pm, although little else as water levels high.

Posted October 12th, 2012 at 4:53 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

East Soar

Redstart this morning plus whinchat & wheatear.

8 jays on the clifftop plus first movement of chaffinches, 52 moving west through Starehole. 240 meadow pipit west.

Will have another look this pm.

Posted October 12th, 2012 at 1:39 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Berry Head

Flying visit, Ring Ouzel showing well in scrub below cafe.

Posted October 12th, 2012 at 9:55 am by John Lusher in Bird News

Thursday 11th October 2012

Bowling green marsh

Watched from the hide 13:45 till 16:45

an increase in avocet numbers to 59 was good to see, 83+ dunlin included 1 juv curlew sandpiper, 18+ bar tailed godwit, 500+ black tailed godwits, 14+ greenshanks, 1 snipe, 2 knot, the 2 garganey showed well, 2 pochard, 13 shoveler, a female sparrowhawk tried to take a dunlin causing mayhem. 

Posted October 11th, 2012 at 8:44 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Otter Head Richard's Pipit

The Richard's Pipit still present this lunchtime, frequenting the weedy edges of the stubble field above the earth bank several hundred meters east further along the coastal path from where it was yesterday.

Posted October 11th, 2012 at 7:41 pm by David Cope in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Water levels on both marshes risen as a result of yet more rain .

In my garden this morning 2 Song Thrush, 4 Chiffchaff and 5 Blackcap ..On T'stone Marsh only 6 Teal with   2 f Shoveler ..

In the Bay a male Common Scoter with 15 fling east and a SANDWICH TERN .

In the copse still a male Redstart, 10 Chiffchaff, 1 Goldcrest, 4 Robin .

On South Huish marsh 1 Lapwing, 35 Teal, 2 Wheatear, 12 Snipe and a Jack Snipe ( watched it feeding - bobbing action )

Posted October 11th, 2012 at 6:31 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Berry Head - take 2

Seawatch 10:00-15:15: wind S gradually veering NW, some rain/drizzle, clearing. All south: Red-throated Diver, 3 Pomarine Skuas, 8 Arctic Skuas, 13 Bonxies, 4 Common Scoter, 2 Eider, 22 Teal, 3 Balearic Shearwaters, 2 Manx Shearwaters (rather unexpected), 303 Kittiwakes (18% juvs), 5 Common Gulls, 3 Mediterranean Gulls ( ad, 1w, 2w), Grey Heron (heading straight out), 70 Razorbills, 5 Guillemots, Constant passage of hirundines heading out in waves (mixture of Swallows and House Martins) and the star bird, a Hobby briefly insecting over the headland in the drizzle.

HobbyHobby

Posted October 11th, 2012 at 6:19 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

Axe Estuary

13:00 12+ Snipe, 2 Grey Plover, Spotted Crake all from Tower Hide. Great views of the Spotted Crake feeding along 200m (North to South)  of bank opposite the hide.

Pectoral Sandpiper showing well from the Island Hide.

2 x Kingfishers, 5 x Meadow Pipits, 2 x Jays, 1 x Reed Bunting seen around the Blackhole Marsh area

50+ mixed House Martins & Swallows feeding around the pond.

Great couple of hours in the dry!!!

Very wet with visibility poor at times hense poor quality photo's

Spotted Crake
Spotted Crake

Spotted Crake
Spotted Crake

Spotted Crake
Spotted Crake

Posted October 11th, 2012 at 6:05 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Clennon Valley

Cetti's Warbler still present, calling (not seen) around 2nd pond, 7 Chiffchaffs, 6 Goldcrersts, 2 Blackcaps, 1 Nuthatch (rare on site), 1 Water Rail. For 2nd day running no sign of any Long-tailed Tits around the ponds there were two flocks last week!

Posted October 11th, 2012 at 2:24 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Around the Axe

Marsh Harrier over the southern part of Seaton Marshes at 09:30 this morning.  8+ Chiffchaffs around the Borrow Pit but STILL no Yellow-browed!

On the Estuary a Bar-tailed Godwit, with a Redstart showing in the field below the gate way over looking the valley just north of Axmouth.

Just had a text from Ian M; Pec Sand and Spotted Crake both still present this morning too.

Posted October 11th, 2012 at 11:26 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Berry Hd

Still very murky with the SE wind and low cloud and occassional heavy rain, in between showers  two flocks of House Martins maximum of 250+ in one flock moved East then West perhaps another group of 160+ earlier but could have been part of the flock! Smaller numbers of Swallows 70+, also overhead were 40+ Meadow Pipits, 5 Chaffinch,3 Song Thrush and 1-2 Redwing.

Around the headland.  13 Chiffchaff, 7 Goldcrest, 1 Blackcap. 

 

Darts Farm, Topsham yesterday 2 Brambling were with a huge flock of Greenfinches toward the fishing ponds dropping into the sunflower crop. 

Posted October 11th, 2012 at 10:25 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Wednesday 10th October 2012

Black Hole Marsh

Here's a distant pic of the Pectoral Sandpiper which was found at BHM on monday. This was taken yesterday but the bird was still present today.


Posted October 10th, 2012 at 9:32 pm by Tim White in Bird News

Around the exe

Bowling green marsh 12:15 till 15:00

from the hide the 2 garganey eventually showed well also 1 ringed plover, 25+ dunlin, 2 knot, 2 pochard, 3 snipe 

from viewing platform 37 avocet, 2 jay, 2 common sandpipers

Mudbank lane  10:45 till 11:40, 37 turnstone, 1 med gull, good numbers of Brent geese, wigeon & pintail 

Orcombe point to sandy bay 08:00 till 10:20, 3 wheatear, 13+ chiffchaffs, 100+ meadow pipits, small numbers of swallows moving east.

 

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 8:53 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Brents and more, off Imperial Road Carpark Exmouth

16:30 this afternoon 150+ mixed Brent Geese with more coming in to feed on the Eel Grass at Duck Ponds. Impressive movement of mixed Brent and Canada Geese with Wigeon and Pintail from all directions to the same area with 20+ Oystercatcher 5+ Little Egret and Curlew in the same feeding grounds.100+ mixed House Martin and Swallow over head the same area.  Very nice sight but too much movement for a reliable count.

Brent Geese at Duck Ponds Exmouth
Brent Geese at Duck Ponds Exmouth

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 8:41 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Soar

Steve Cox and I battled rain and mist all day - a surprising number of Meadow Pipits moving east through this - 595 between 0725 - 0930; also 25 Goldfinches, 6 Swallows and 54 Alba Wagtials east in the same period.

Otherwise: a Lapland Bunting seen flying over the copse, then over East Soar Farm and then flushed from the grassy field east of the farm; 1 Merlin; 80+ Skylarks; 6 Song Thrushes; 1 Reed Warbler; 13 Goldcrests; 10 Blackcaps; 1 Whichat; and 4 Wheatears. 

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 8:37 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Velator

Ringing this morning was slow: No Long-tailed Tits, but 4 Coal Tits! 2 Blackcaps and Chiffchaff, Best (or beast) of the day was a very noisy and aggressive adult Jay - caught in exactly the same net as the last Jay here. Back at the reserve this evening a very large flock of Starlings arrived in a tremendous whoosh sounding like a blast of wind! They quickly departed.

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 7:57 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Otter Head/Ledge

Richard's Pipit still present this morning on coast path on the east side of the estuary. The bird was feeding in rough grass adjacent to coast path approx. 100M east of the end of the pines adjacent to large stubble field. Still very difficult to see, but if you are very patient it is possible to follow it in a scope through the vegetation!

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 6:37 pm by Chris Townend in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Another dank day weather wise but some good birds .

On the rocks/ beach - 5 Turnstone, 4 Ringed Plover, 1 Redshank. 2ad Med Gull and 4 Shoveler flew west.

In the copse still 1 1st w male Redstart, 4 Chiffchaff, 1 Willow Warbler.

Whilst watching the Redstart Nick T and i had a female Hen Harrier fly over the marsh and up the valley.also 3 Jay.

On the roof of the flats by the carpark at 12.30 a female Black Redstart.

In a brief ringing session at 16.00 Bob caught 14 Chiffchaff.

Just rec'd info of a Garden Warbler ringed at South Milton Ley on 24 Aug. 2011 and controlled on Fair Isle Shetland on 27 May 2012-. The first time for a recovery this far north ( 650 miles )

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 6:15 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Exminster marshes

Whooper swan still viewable from railway bridge by Swans nest pub, looking back towards M5 road bridge. 

However, much better views from the railway footbridge from Exminster village, connecting to Milbury lane. Heavily cropped pic attached. 


Posted October 10th, 2012 at 4:52 pm by Joe Martin in Bird News

Start Point

Wind ESE with heavy drizzle at times. Quick seawatch: c150 Gannets feeding with c50 Kittiwakes off the point, attending were a juv Pomarine and juv Arctic Skua, 2 Balearic Shearwaters (heading NE), c10 Common Scoter (on the sea), 6 Brent Geese (dark bellied) and 2 Bonxies heading SW. 

At the lighthouse: Firecrest, Spotted Flycatcher, Pied Flycatcher and several Chiffchaffs, 2 Wheatears and a Redwing. In the next valley: Blackcap, 3 Ring Ouzels, 2 Goldcrests, numerous Meadow Pipits and up to 3 Sparrowhawks around.

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 4:15 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

River Caen/River Taw.

1200-1430hrs   5Bar tailed godwit,6Greenshank,3 Redshank,5 Little grebe,30+ Oystercatcher,20+Dunlin and a Kestrel. Isley marsh held good numbers of Curlew and Wigeon and 4 Spoonbill. Also noted were large numbers of Starling moving through 2000+ mainly west.Only 1 Swallow seen.

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 3:43 pm by John hunt in Bird News

Exminster marshes

Visit at lunch time slightly ahead of high water. Water levels up since yesterday with extensive flooding north of the lane. Viewing from railway bridge located the adult whooper swan with 4 mute swans. Lots of black-headed gulls and curlew but difficult to count. 

On the main marsh duck numbers similar to yesterday although 2 pintail were new. Singles and groups of snipe frequently flying around and calling with 19 being the largest group. I estimate a total of 30 seen. Also 19 lapwing and c60 black-tailed godwit. A peregrine on a pylon and sparrowhawk on a gate appeared to make the 30 or so meadow pipits nervous.

On the canal bank 6 blackcaps (2 males), 2 goldcrests, 2+ chiffchaffs and 2 flocks of mixed tits. Overhead 2 swallows and 5 house martins.

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 2:48 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Soar

Soar to Southdown to Soar Valley

11.0 am to 1.0 pm

3 Wheatears, 5 Blackcaps, 14 Chiffchaffs, c.120 Linnets, c. 40 Meadow Pipits

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 2:31 pm by Roger White in Bird News

Berry Head

Seawatches 0815-1115 , partly by me and partly by Bob Bailey and John Lusher, produced 7-8 Mediterranean Gulls mostly moving south, 250+ Kittiwakes, 3 Arctic Skua, 3 Pomarine, 1 Bonxie (flew north), 1 Balearic Shearwater, 1 Redthroated Diver, and 11 Brent Geese (all thought to be dark bellied). Groups of hirundines, nearly all Swallows, coasting past the headland , totalling perhaps 500.

Posted October 10th, 2012 at 1:52 pm in Bird News

Tuesday 9th October 2012

Bowling green marsh

watched from the hide 10:45 till 13:45

the 2 garganey showed well right in front of the hide, 582+ black tailed godwits , 2 bar tailed godwits, 13+ snipe, 25+ dunlin, 2 pochard, 18+ shoveler, 3 tufted duck, 1 kingfisher

Posted October 9th, 2012 at 9:57 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Seaton, Blackhole Marsh

Spotted crake this afternoon from the Tower Hide between 16.50 - 17.30 working its way right along the Estuary island opposite the hide, & the Pectoral Sandpiper still on Blackhole Marsh & also a good numbers of hirundines.

Posted October 9th, 2012 at 9:03 pm by Kevin Hale in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Another gloomy wet day .

Around South Huish Marsh- 45 Teal, 3 Wheatear, 1 Curlew (over )1 Yellow Wagtail. In the copse 2 1st w male Redstart  8 Chiffchaff, 1 Great Sp Woodpecker.

In the Bay - 1 Great Crested  Grebe and 8 Teal.

Late afternoon Bob B had a Barn Owl at the back of the marsh in trees .

During the day hirundine passage when heavy rain stopped - this morning 600 Swallow and 400 House Martin

Posted October 9th, 2012 at 5:58 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Exminster marshes

Lane flooded but passable in wellies. Walked from Lion's Rest estate to Turf along the canal bank. Lots of standing water with more falling out of the sky.

On the various pools 160 black-tailed godwits (c120 flew on to the estuary), 24 lapwings, 28 snipe (flying around in one flock) and one green sandpiper. Duck were hard to count due to the vegetation but managed 8 shoveller, c140 teal, c40 mallard and 28 wigeon. Other birds on the wet meadows were 8 alba wagtails, 6 meadow pipits, one stonechat. 23 avocets were on the estuary close to the canal bank.

On the canal bank a kingfisher, 2 chiffchaffs, one Cettis and one reed bunting. Flying over were 4 jays, c60 goldfinches, 6 greenfinches and a few linnets. My total count of swallows and house martins was about 200 in mixed flocks of which about 70% were swallows.

 

Posted October 9th, 2012 at 4:59 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Redwings

Sunday 7th October. 7.30am.

Saw 2 flocks of 50+ Redwing over Okehampton. Mixed up with them were c. 30 House Martin.

Then saw 1st yr.fem. Snow bunting on the moor. Climate change or what?

Posted October 9th, 2012 at 3:17 pm by Martin Unwin in Bird News

Berry Head - late am

Brief seawatch approx. 11:00-12:30. During a clearance in the weather some passage, though no doubt included some of the same birds seen by Mike L earlier: 2 Ad Mediterranean Gulls, 2 Pomarine Skuas, 5 Arctic Skuas, steady but light passage of Auks (mostly Razorbills), 9 Bonxies, 2 Sandwich Terns and 4 Harbour porpoises (inc. calf). Two interesting observations with the Bonxies, one flew straight in and landed on the rocks by the slope we walk up to the watchpoint - I've never seen a Bonxie actually land ashore there before. It casually preened and looked fairly relaxed and in good condition (but I had no camera!), but was then flushed by another seawatcher arriving who was unaware it was there, it then flew staight over our heads about 10ft up! The other of note, was a Bonxie chasing a storm-petrel sp., some 600m off the headland, only seen first in bins, by the time I got the scope on it, the Bonxie was sat on the water swallowing something petrel sized!

Posted October 9th, 2012 at 3:14 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

Black Hole Marsh, Seaton

Pectoral Sandpiper showing well from Island Hide, but at distance on south west corner; first seen yesterday morning I believe.  Also present 3 Green Sandpiper.  No sightings so far today of Spotted Crake, also first seen yesterday, on saltmarsh opposite Tower Hide.

Posted October 9th, 2012 at 1:57 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Velator

Found a Water Rail in the reserve yesterday. Sadly it was a freshly killed bird missing head and breast, but otherwise unplucked. Made me wonder what had taken it. Sparrowhawk kills are almost always surrounded with feathers.

Posted October 9th, 2012 at 1:13 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Berry Hd

Heart stopping moment of the morning was flushing a Stone Curlew from the very end of Berry Hd it flew back toward the meadow calling but after dashing back from the headland, there were only dog walkers and cattle to be found. I'm sure I heard it heading back out toward the headland but could not relocate it there either. I and others have checked the limited fields just behind the headland but again no sign.

Otherwise of interest: 1 male Redstart, 14 Chiffchaffs, 22 Goldcrest, 1 Blackcap, 2 Siskins.

A look over the sea whilst checking the quarry for migrants earlier produced: 1 juv Pomarine Skua and 2 Arctic Skuas harassing a feeding group of about 150-200 Kittiwakes also two ad Mediterranean Gulls and several Common Gull in the same area feeding.

Posted October 9th, 2012 at 11:35 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Exmouth

Orcombe Point - 0710 - 0845 - 1 jack snipe, 1 snipe, 3+ stonechat, c300+ meadow pipit, c100+ skylark and 1 red-throated pipit in stubble field at top of Gore Lane @0742. The bird is mobile, ranging between both large stubble fields either side of the lane., still present 0815 at least. Please view only from Gore Lane and do not enter stubble fields.

Posted October 9th, 2012 at 9:15 am by Matt Knott in Bird News

Wembury

Taking the rubbish out late last night, a single Redwing called from the mist.

Posted October 9th, 2012 at 8:58 am in Bird News

Monday 8th October 2012

Bowling Green Marshes

Not very exciting today apart from 4 foxes showed well after the rain stopped this afternoon!

They kept the Grey Heron on it's toes!


Posted October 8th, 2012 at 11:15 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Otter Head

After the rain stopped this afternoon a flock of 100+ House Martins over the house heading west. On the coastal path east of Otter Head there was a break in the mist and low cloud when the sun broke through and  then 450+ house martins and swallows (95% House Martins). Flock of 250+ Linnet in the stubble fields near Otter Head plus groups of Skylark (40+) and Meadow Pipt (50+). Highlight was a Richard's Pipt seen badly on deck (only head) in long grass adjacent to coastal path, where I managed to get a couple of record shots.Also seen and heard calling in flight approx 300M along coast path E of Otter Head. Also 1st winter male Redstart and single Wheatear.



Posted October 8th, 2012 at 10:07 pm by Chris Townend in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

The Whooper Swan was viewable from close to the railway bridge by the RSPB car park looking back towards the motorway at about 1.30 this afternoon.

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 9:17 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Richard - blodspot

Tried to link into your web site- failed- could be my total ignorance of this latest techno !!! help

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 9:03 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

House Martins

For little more than personal curiosity I wanted to do a bit of analysis on the House Martin passage of yesterday. I would be interested in any HM sightings from yesterday (or the few previous days or today). I can get some of them from here but would be intersted in any reports even if they are of small numbers. Not to clog this site up, more details are on my blog (http://theweekendbiologist.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/house-martins-71012.html) and you can leave sightings there as comments.

Cheers, Rich

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 8:57 pm in Bird News

Soar

09:15-17:30.  Malborough-Furzedown/ Hgr. Soar/ E Soar/Starehole/ Bolt Head/Warren/Hgr.Soar-Malborough

Mod SE wind and heavy drizzle through the night. Dry and relativly still by 09:00, fog all day.

10 Song Thrushes, 6 Chiffchaffs and 12 Goldcrest on the walk to Furzedown hinted at a good day but it never really took off. All i added were 2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers, Collared Dove ( Hgr. Soar ), 2 Grey Wagtails, Wheatear, 20 Song Thrushes, Redwing ( any been reported elsewhere in Devon yet ? ), 4 Blackcaps, 41 Chiffchaffs and 25 Goldcrests. Might have made a mistake today ignoring Soar Mill Cove as there were a lot of birds around Higher Soar.

Two Roe Deer leapt out of the plantation.

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 7:21 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Start Point

Went over to Start Point with Bob B from 12.30 afew more birds than Dave had this morning- 6 Redstart,

6 Blackcap, 1 Whinchat, 3 Willow Warbler 2 Chiffchaff. 1 Pied Flycatcher ,. A Merlin flew through

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 5:58 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Gloomy day with fog and drizzle - In the copse by South Huish Marsh a 1st  w male Redstart, 12 Greenfinch, 3 Chiffchaff. Overhead 700 Swallow moving east. On the beach 8 Ringed Plover, 5 Dunlin

Around T'stone Marsh - 3 Med Gull, 1 Cirl Bunting, 1 Cirl Bunting and a Merlin. First Goldcrest of the autumn through the garden this autumn.

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 5:53 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Around Brixham

Continuing the hirundine theme. We had a break in the mist over the head at 14:30 when a large influx of House martins and Swallows appeared to come in off he sea travelling NE and feeding . For about 15 mins I would estimate that the number of birds was in the thousands and extended accross all of the heath and head. Again probably an 80/20 split in favour of the House Martins.

In the quarry were 3 goldcrests and 8 chiffchaff,male and female Stonechat.On the top ,2 redstart, one at the crossroads and one in the south fort were the highlights There are so many chiffchaffs, I got to 36 in the main gorse stands.

5 wheatear at the start of the breakwater this morning dodging the walkers,over to the pontoon and back.

Another break in the mist at Sharkham showed another busrt of mainly Swallow activity but nowhere near the numbers over the head earlier

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 5:52 pm by Tim Clyburn in Bird News

Hope's Nose

Made a rare visit to the Nose early pm, like elsewhere some fog. A Yellow-browed Warbler in with a mixed flock of Long-tailed Tits, 5 Goldcrests and several Chiffchaffs. This flock was very mobile and we could not locate it again coming back up the hill. Flushed a Snipe at the end of the Nose, where also a Whinchat.

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 5:48 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

Sharkham Point

1645hrs - Yellow-browed Warbler, picked up on call at first and showed well, but due to heavy drizzle at the time unable to grab a photo. It was in almost the same spot as 2 years ago within the rear field of St Marys Bay in the Sycamore/scrub area.

Very foggy this afternoon so little else on the headland and bushes but as most are commenting on, lots of Jays about. Sharkham seems to be a bit of a stronghold for Stonechats at the moment with 12 counted in a very small area.

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 5:26 pm by Josh Marshall in Bird News

West Charleton marsh

 Marsh harrier, flew in off estuary and slowly up the lengh of the marsh, it panicked 12 Blackwits into flight. Little else of note at this site.

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 4:52 pm by John Lusher in Bird News

Chudleigh hirundine passage

After a dull and damp morning, a brief period of hazy sunshine sent the temperature up from 16 to 19C at 12:25. Within 5 minutes the air was full of Swallows and House Martins and over 600 flew NE in 15 minutes. Movement was leisurely though, most birds apparently feeding as they went. There were slightly more House Martins than Swallows, perhaps 60:40. As I looked through bins at them there were good numbers of flying insects in the air: house-fly types, bumble-bees and even a few crane flies maybe 25m up!

As the rain earlier marked the passage north-eastwards of a warm front (airflow from North Africa?), I wonder whether they were following the front and hence any insects carried up by rising air and/or rising temperature. Although Swifts are known to track weather movements (presumably either to avoid bad weather and/or feed on insects carried by the air mass), and I would guess House Martins might do the same, I've not seen hirundine movements suggesting this before. Clearly, moving NE in October is not logical if you should be making for Africa!

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 3:31 pm by Dave Smallshire in Bird News

Start Point

Early am , Start Farm fogged in but some clearance further down near the lighthouse area, where 3 Common Redstarts, 6 Wheatears, 8+ Robins, Whinchat , 4 Chiffs and a Yellow Wagtail were present. Tried Prawle but completely fogged in.

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 3:16 pm in Bird News

Around the Axe

Little Stint on Colyford Marsh this morning, also Grey Plover on the Estuary.

Earlier from the Tower Hide, Ian Mc had an Arctic Tern and amazingly the Spotted Crake again.  It was last seen about a month ago!

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 3:03 pm by Steve Waite in Bird News

Berry Hd & Clennon Valley

Thick drizzly, mist/fog this morning the only sign of any movement was during a couple of brief clearences of the mist:

There was a mass movement south of Kittiwakes coming out of Torbay; 2236 on the click counter, 100+ Gannets and 1 Sandwich Tern in a 20 minute break in the weather. 

Overhead: 1 Tree Pipit, 8 Skylark, 26 alba Wagtails, 3 Song Thrush, 1 Grey Wagtail, 61 House Martin, 22 Swallow,40 Goldfinch, 3 Siskin and 4 Chaffinch.

Around Headland: 1 Ring Ouzel,14 Chiffchaff, 12 Goldcrest, 11 Blackcap, 4 Wheatear, 2 Coal Tit, 2 Stonechat.

 

Clennon Valley: Cetti's Warbler still around 2nd Pond, just 2 Chiffchaffs, 3 Goldcrest, 1 Blackcap, 2 Little Egrets, 1 Pintail, 4 Shoveler, 2 Water Rail and a 2nd w Mediterranean Gull. No sign of the Yellow-browed Warbler yesterday or today it was apparently still present on Saturday morning.

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 2:28 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Froward Point

07.40-12.50. More of everything, including Robins and Blackbirds, but notable species only single Redstart and Whinchat.

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 2:21 pm in Bird News

Spoonbills - Isley Marsh

4 Spoonbills at lunchtime today.

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 2:13 pm by Robert Jutsum in Bird News

Pottington

Sadly, no sign of a Dowitcher, and hardly any Oystercatchers either!

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 12:41 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Pottington

Just took a call from John Wicks who is pretty sure he had a Long-billed Dowitcher at Pottington with the Oystercatcher roost at yesterday morning's high tide. I'll try to get there dreckly to see if I can find it....

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 10:21 am by Jon Turner in Bird News

Get Involved

Not a bird post, sorry but not sure the forum gets looked at that much.

Get involved...

http://forum.devonbirds.org/

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 9:34 am by Josh Marshall in Bird News

Bradiford

Chased a sheep out of one of the enclosures this morning, and saw 11 Swans (inc 4 juvs) and the Black Swan was with them.

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 9:29 am by Jon Turner in Bird News

East Devon (Sunday)

A few words that might help define the extraordinary passage of house martins witnessed yesterday. At about 10.00 I walked east from the Otter estuary towards Sidmouth. I turned inland at Peak Hill. During the 3 hours I failed to see any house martins. I did record about 100 swallows all flying out to sea  (SE).

Also seen; 2 wheatears, c40 skylarks, 6 brent geese (flying west & dark bellied), a few meadow pipits and c100 woodpigeons (flew out to sea).

 

Posted October 8th, 2012 at 9:18 am by John Waldon in Bird News

Sunday 7th October 2012

West Budleigh Cliffs / Golf Course

Similar movements of house martins witnessed over Budleigh Golf course and cliffs this morning with over 100+ birds hawking along cliff edge at around 09.30 with the odd swallow. Regular groups of Meadow Pipits and Skylarks also moving and 3 Crossbill heading East.

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 10:23 pm by Chris Townend in Bird News

Wembury

Similar hirundine passage at Wembury but impossible for me to estimate numbers. Started slowly with mostly Swallows moving east in twos and threes up to about 9 AM. Then the House Martins started. At times this afternoon I could see 20/30 birds in each field of view no matter where I looked. Certainly in the thousands passed through today. Like others, just a single Sand Martin (and a wierd bird that eluded me, giving brief and distant views that looked like a good candidate HM x SM hybrid). Swallow numbers seemed much lower than in other places and only maybe 1-2% were Swallows this afternoon.

Other than that, 2 Wheatear, 1 Crossbill, 500+ Mipit, 200+ Linnet, 80 Goldfinch but very few Skylarks or Chiffs and only a single Jay to report.

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 7:41 pm in Bird News

Brixham Breakwater

4 Mediterranean Gulls flew (one adult, three first winter) out from the harbour at 5pm  . Otherwise quiet, with 12 Turnstone and 1 Razorbill.

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 7:30 pm in Bird News

Prawle Point to Pig Nose Valley

Following on from Mike's post just a constant stream of House Martins & Swallows, sat on the headland by the Coastguard watch point surrounded by birds just amazing, again 90% House Martins, picked out just 2 Sand Martin and the rest were Swallows. Elsewhere 5 Chiffchaff, 20+ Skylark, 2 Wheatear, 2 Goldcrest, Blackcap, Bullfinch, Grey Wagtail, 4 Pied Wagtail, Cirl Bunting, 6 Stonechat and 3 Jay.

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 7:11 pm by Bill Macdonald in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 08:50 till 15:30

the whooper swan put in a brief appearance before flying off towards darts farm, 1 curlew sandpiper was rather elusive, 500+ black tailed godwit, 3+ bar tailed godwit, 5+ greenshank, 16+ snipe, 2 pochard,5+ tufted duck, 7+ little egrets, 6+ buzzard, kestrel, 2 pintail, 120+ dunlin, 1 knot

23 avocet flew in and is best count of the autumn so far, there was steady passage of house martins with at least 6 groups of 100 plus in one half hour period and included smaller numbers of  swallows smaller numbers of alba wagtails and meadow pipits were also noticed including a group of 30+ in field by viewing platform also at least 35+ jay through 

also from viewing platform another curlew sandpiper, 2 red breasted mergansers, common sandpiper, 1 snipe over, 2 song thrush , sparrowhawk, 1 whimbrel, 2 knot, 2 grey plover a few more buzzards moved through but no sign of the spotted redshank 

another good day around the marsh 

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 6:52 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Soar

Little moving at first light but by 0740 a bit of vis mig got underway and produced the following (all east) by 0900:-

Chaffinch 95, Siskin 19 (+ 3 later), Meadow Pipit 130, Alba Wagtail 70, House Marttin 65, Linnet 130, Skylark 15, Swallow 25, Goldfinch 65, Crossbill 5, Greenfinch 3.

After this, there were always House Martins in the sky but no obvious movement and my estimate of 500 is a drop in Mike's ocean! Otherwise numbers genrally up - Blackcap 8, Goldcrest 14, Chiffchaff 33, Song Thrush 9, Jay 8+, Lesser Redpoll 2; also single Whichat, Wheatear, Great Spotted Woodpecker, and Reed Bunting, plus 7 Golden Plovers. 

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 6:26 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

A massive Hirundine passage today - one that few of us can remember seeing so many birds .

At 08.00 a flock over T'stone Marsh of 1000 + -mostly House Martin- another flock of 800+ at 10.00.

Standing by the cafe birds started moving west by the 1000's. At times over 100 a minute were passing in front of us never mind those inland. Over the next 1.5 hours at least 25000 moved through- 95% House Martin. During the day only 1 Sand Martin. Then at 14.30 the passage started again for an hour with lighter passage until 16.30  At 17.00 Bob B had 2-3000 Swallow roosting at South Milton Ley.

My own estimate is that over 50000 birds moved through 90% House Martin. Will be iteresting to see if other sites on the south coast  had the same passage.

On the marshes- 2 Snipe, 4 Dunlin, 1 Lapwing, 50 + Teal, 1 Wigeon, . Offshore 2 Sandwich Tern, 4 Med Gull 1 m Common Scoter.

6 Wheatear in the cafe field /coast path. Overhead 240 Mipit, 2 Redpoll 25 Skylark, 4 Grey Wagtail

 

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 6:14 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Velator reserve

Ringing yesterday produced a hatful of birds, half (20) of which were Long-tailed Tits! One each of Blackcap, Chiffchaff and Goldcrest, and the first of the autumn Finches with Green, Chaff, and 2 Bullfinch, both males, one of which was still moulting out of it's juvenile plumage. Didn't catch the Jay which has been around intermittently for a while now. Caught the 3rd Great Spotted Woodpecker of the autumn.

Today saw the SWW people in the surrounding fields dealing with a blocked drain which was causing Wrafton Pond to fill rather alarmingly, and causing a stream to run down the east side of the reserve. In the reserve the first Reed Buntings for some months and a couple of calling Water Rails in the surrounding reedbeds. One Swallow over, but not Red-rumped.

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 6:13 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Soar.

To add to Petes report from Soar yesterday; I had a rather nice male Merlin sitting in the field between Bunting Corner and The Plantation yesterday. Otherwise quiet.

Regards R.M

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 5:59 pm by Roy McCarthy in Bird News

Trentishoe

 Ringtail Hen Harrier passing through, low over the fields at Trentishoe this morning, also two Wheatear one of which was bathing in a pond beside the road.

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 5:20 pm by Margaret Phillips in Bird News

Exmouth

Orcombe Point - 0710 - c50+ alba wagtail, c1/200+ meadow pipit, 3+ reed bunting, 13+ chiffchaff, 4 mistle thrush, c50+ canada goose, c50+ linnet, c40+ skylark, c10+ goldfinch, 5+ siskin, 3+ redpoll, 1 brent goose, 1 lapwing, 1 starling, 2 wheatear, 2+ coal tit, 1 juv/fw spotted flycatcher, 1 blackcap, 1+ bullfinch, 2 great spotted woodpecker, 12+ chaffinch, 1 stonechat, 2 lesser black-backed gull, c200 + swallow, c50+ house martin.

Mudbank - 8+ pale-bellied brent goose with c230+ dark-bellied brents, 1 scaup, 1 tufted duck, 2w mediterranean gull, c100+ house martin, 9+ great crested grebe, 1 teal and 1 grey wagtail.

Yesterday - 1 treecreeper, 1 redpoll and 3 jay amongst more regular migrants on Orcombe Point and an impressive flock of 21+ jay SE over Mudbank.

 

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 3:52 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

Instow

 

 23 med gulls on rocks,13 ad,4 sw,6fw.10;30-12:15.Paid a visit to kenwith nature reserve to find what used to be a productive and enjoyable site to visit has become a complete eyesore.The only patch of water you can see on the bottom pond is  from the dam and consists of an area  about ten ft in diameter!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.What a joke.The work that the enviroment agency did to at least allow the water to build again has not done anything to provide the areas needed for the birdlife which used to frequent this area.The whole pond has become choked with vegetation.The islands that used to attract upto 50 snipe and occaisonally jack snipe have completely overgrown.The top pond which used to regularly bring in hundreds of at least 7 species of duck doesnt even attract mallards these days.Not one bird today although heard two water rail.The top lake is a seperate issue i believe as this has gone rapidly in decline from its former glory and would require scientific investigation ie water samples taken and analysed because i cant believe that the population of carp would eat all the foodstuffs within the pond,or could they?.As i see it it would take an army of volunteers to restore  the site back to anywhere matching the previous quality of the site.I very much doubt the society would have any funds to even touch the amount of work needed.Shame but their you go,just thought it deserved a mention.

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 2:55 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

R.Caen, Taw Estuary from Fisherman's huts & Horsey

No sign of an Osprey this morning.

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 2:02 pm by Robert Jutsum in Bird News

Froward pt./ Brownstone

Walking down through the fields produced 200+ meadow pipits, 12 Jays in a tight flock flying N. 13 Golden plover above cliffs. Also 5 Alba wagtail, 6 Skylark, Wheatear, Yellow hammer and 3 goldcrest by car park.

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 1:47 pm by John Lusher in Bird News

Migrating Whimbrel over North Devon

A lone Whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus) observed at 12:05 pm today, 7th October 2012, flying out of the northeast heading southwest 150ft overhead Baggy Point, North Devon. Two pairs of juvenile barn swallows also seen and were feeding low over the bracken. 

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 1:21 pm by Philip Naylor in Bird News

Migrating Jay's over North Devon

Seen overhead Braunton, North Devon, at 9:00 am today Saturday 7th October, were about a dozen Jay's (Garrulus glandarius) flying directly north out of the south at about 300ft. Obviously on passage somewhere!

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 1:13 pm by Philip Naylor in Bird News

Berry Head

2 Ring Ouzel in the central gorse thicket took off towards the main headland this morning.

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 12:59 pm by Tim Clyburn in Bird News

Berry Hd

Some overhead passage early this morning: 87 Meadow Pipits,19 alba wagtails, 17 Greenfinch, 23 Skylark, 9 Chaffinch, 6 Goldfinch, 7 Swallows, 12 Siskin, 2 Lesser Redpoll (dropped in briefly), 18 Linnet, 2 Snipe and 1 Yellowhammer. 

Around Headland: 1 Hawfinch flew in and landed in Hawthorn for myself and warden to watch for a while before a blackbird chased it off, 14 Chiffchaff, 7 Goldcrest, 7 Blackcaps, 1 Wheatear, 1 Coal tit (on headland), several small groups of Song Thush totalling 14. 

Posted October 7th, 2012 at 10:37 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Saturday 6th October 2012

Instow

 

    Pale bellied brent goose,4 adult meds,3 knot flyovers,12 ringed plover.10:00.

Posted October 6th, 2012 at 9:45 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Soar

Paul Kemp and I arrived at 0805 when a modest passage was underway overhead with day end counts including: House Martin 20+, Swallow 50+, Alba Wagtail 33 (plus c20 grounded at E.Soar Farm), and Siskin 4.

Highlight however was a Yellow-browed Warbler in willows half way down main path in Starehole, then buzzing around frantically in the valley before disappearing into the bushes further down. 

Otherwise: a single Yellow Wagtail at E. Soar Farm; 1 Snipe, 3 Whinchats; 6 Jays (flock); 5 Chiffchaffs, 5 Blackcaps; 4 Goldcrests; and 1 Wheatear.

Posted October 6th, 2012 at 9:31 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Just a couple pics of the whooper swan at Bowling green earlier today

Posted October 6th, 2012 at 8:58 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Hallsands to Lannacombe and back

Many Swallows (1500+)  moving particularly this afternoon with a count of 427 in 1/2 hour moving NE below Start Farm, amoungst them just 12 House Martins and 2 Sand Martin (unfortunately no Red-rumps!). 1 Dartford Warbler, 9 Chiffchaff, 3 Goldcrest, 2 Blackcap, and one Mediterranean Gull at Woodcombe bay and 2 White Wagtails with Pied Wagtails on Mattiscombe Beach (Start Pt).

2 Wheatears Beesands.

 Wheatear Beesands 06 Oct 2012

Posted October 6th, 2012 at 8:56 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 07:30 till 15:30

A fantastic day with a first for Bowiling green with the arrival of a whooper swan at about 10:20 an unexpected arrival and at times showed well pics to follow, the supporting cast wasn't bad with 4 curlew sandpipers an adult spotted redshank and 2+ garganey, 500+ black tailed godwits, 2 bar tailed godwits, 5+ greenshanks, 3+ pintail, 450+ wigeon, 23+ lapwing, 2 Cetti's warblers and 17+ snipe and good numbers of teal and curlew and 120+ dunlin

At 12:46 whilst watching 7+ buzzard by the rivers meet house spotted what looked like a pale Honey buzzard higher up and managed to get in scope and confirm eventually saw it drift off south/south west  what a stunning bird and a very good record for bowling green 

from the viewing platform over next 2 hours had 16+ buzzard through heading a south/south west with good numbers of swallows and house martins and a few groups of meadow pipits, 2 jays, sparrowhawk and a peregrine, the adult spotted redshank and the 4 curlew sandpipers showed very well as did a kingfisher perched on a broken tree branch which was floating down river, 3 grey wagtails and a common sandpiper

I popped back to the hide the whooper swan was still there but had been joined by 23+ pintail 

A quality day around the marsh 

Posted October 6th, 2012 at 7:29 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Red Kite

At 17:00 great views of a Red Kite circling low over the A3052 at the Hontion turn off (half way between Seaton and Sidford).

Well done to the Thurlestone team on your Red-rumper!

Posted October 6th, 2012 at 6:28 pm by Steve Waite in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

A superb week just got better this morning with the juv RED RUMPED SWALLOW found by Bob B amongst a feeding flock of Swallow and House Martin at  09.15 by the lagoon footbridge over South Milton Ley . Only AJL and myself were in time to see it, it had moved on by 09.45. I am informed this is the 3rd site record  and the first in autumn.  A patch tick for me .

Other birds around - 24 Wigeon, 45 Teal, 10 Wheatear., 3ad &1 2w Med Gull, 8 Siskin

Posted October 6th, 2012 at 5:35 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Stones Point, Salcombe

A new walk for me turned up male crossbill, 17 alba wagtails inc.4 classic whites, 209 swallow, 5 goldcrest and yet more jays with 7 heading west.

Posted October 6th, 2012 at 3:37 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

River Caen/River Taw

1130-1400hrs.    1 Osprey seen on a fence post in the middle of horsey island, then over crow point.  5 Greenshank,30+Swallow,20+Medow pipit,2 Little grebe,2 Jay.   Islay marsh held 5 Spoonbill and 200+Curlew.

Posted October 6th, 2012 at 3:18 pm by John hunt in Bird News

South Milton Ley

Call from Bob Burridge, he had a Red-rumped Swallow from the footbridge with a mixed flock of 150 hirundines at 09:30 this morning. It was there for about 20 minutes but appears to have gone with the rest of the flock.

Posted October 6th, 2012 at 10:38 am by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Friday 5th October 2012

Soar

 Strong west wind and heavy rain overnight. Both died out by dawn. Persistant heavy drizzle after 13:00.

08:10-17:00; Malborough-Furzedown/Hgr.Soar/Warren/East Soar/Starehole/Bolt Head

Green Sandpiper ( from distance heard one calling near the car park, just hope it was not a Solitary Sandpiper  ! ), Snipe, 3 Golden Plover, 300+ Skylarks, 700+ Meadow Pipits, 2 Grey Wagtails, 28 Swallows, 3 Whinchats, 5 Wheatears, 8 Blackcaps, 13 Chiffchaffs, 10 Goldcrests and 10 Jays ( including flock of 8 over the Warren - very unusual ).

 

Posted October 5th, 2012 at 7:03 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

The heavy rain from lunchtime on brought in the first sizeable flock of Golden Plover of the autumn with 57 birds this afternoon.

Posted October 5th, 2012 at 4:54 pm in Bird News

Clennon Valley

Yellow-browed Warbler started at the eastern end of eastern pond at 1.30pm in willow by the weir with 3 Chiffchaffs. It then joined a party of 8-10 long-tailed Tits and more Chiffchaffs working its way up to the willows by the weir on the 2nd pond at 2.15pm. Very active, quite vocal and giving the chiffchaffs some grief! I gave up trying to get a photo when the rain got very heavy. Total of 13 Chiffchaffs, 5 Goldcrest and 2 Blackcaps.

Update: still showing around wooden 'pontoon' bridge between two large ponds at western end this evening 5.30-6.10pm with party of Long-tailed Tits.

Also Cetti's Warbler still on 2nd Pond in Reeds, 1 male Pintail, 2 little Egrets, 1 Little Grebe

Posted October 5th, 2012 at 2:56 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

12 wheatears still but no sign of any stonechats. 5 mallard is notable for the site. Overhead another 3 jays and 6 siskins. Skylark, linnet and meadow pipit numbers about the same.

Posted October 5th, 2012 at 11:26 am in Bird News

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Berry Hd

Red- Breasted Flycatcher Berry Head this morning just down the road from Wardens Bungalow, in Sycamores - staying high up under canopy called several times.  

Red-breasted Flycatcher, Berry Head.
Red-breasted Flycatcher, Berry Head.

Posted October 5th, 2012 at 10:00 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Yellow-browed Warbler

This Yellow-browed Warbler spent less than a minute in a small private garden in Tiverton yesterday.  Well done to the observer, James Morrison, for grabbing the camera so quickly!

Yellow-browed Warbler Tiverton
Yellow-browed Warbler Tiverton

Posted October 5th, 2012 at 8:31 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Osprey

The satellite-tagged Osprey Fearna which has been around Barnstaple for a while apparently left last Saturday morning and at 6 pm was in Brittany! The comment was that she has a lot of catching up to do!

Posted October 5th, 2012 at 12:41 am by Jon Turner in Bird News

Thursday 4th October 2012

West Charleton Marsh

2 Snipe flushed from edge of main reed bed. Also 2 Stonechat and 3 Reed Bunting. From the hide 4 Grey Plover in mixed flock of Dunlin, 12 Oystercatcher and 50+ Curlew.


Posted October 4th, 2012 at 10:44 pm by Rod Taylor in Bird News

River Caen/River Taw

1315-1615hrs   1 Osprey was seen on the short post at the rear of chivnor. This bird then flew down the taw to horsey island before it was then joined by a second osprey, they flew side by side for at least 15 mins before splitting up. How long will they stay?? Also 12 ad and 3 young mute swan, 4 little grebe, 2 meadow pipit, 2 wheatear, 1 buzzard, 1 kestrel, 5+ swallow, 3 greenshank and a Kingfisher.

Posted October 4th, 2012 at 6:26 pm by John hunt in Bird News

R.Caen, Taw Estuary from Fishermans huts

Late afternoon

1 Osprey, 7 Grey Plover, 14 Turnstone ,57 Curlew,127 Wigeon,

5 Wheatear, 252 Black headed Gulls, 5 Med Gulls, 2 Common Gulls.

Posted October 4th, 2012 at 6:13 pm by Robert Jutsum in Bird News

Thurlestone Marsh

 Before setting off for Soar on /around the Marsh were- 45 Teal, 2 Wigeon, 1 Little Grebe, 7 Jay.

Continuing the Jay theme - Bob B has just phoned , he was ringing at Mansands this am where they had 6 Jay ( they also ringed 14 Chiffchaff )

Posted October 4th, 2012 at 5:54 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Bolberry Down - Soar Mill Cove valley

Spent 4hrs this morning covering the valley and the 'Dotterel' field. Viz mig quite slow- 125 Mipit, 15 Swallow, 1 Grey wagtail, 4 Alba Wagtail, 70 Linnet .

In the willows heard a Yellow Browed Warbler at 10.15- finally located it at 10.35- only gave brief views as the coppice is quite dense here, also heard it again at 12.30. Also in the valley 10 Chiffchaff, 8 Goldcrest, 8 Blackcap, 15 Long T Tit, 5 Great Tit, 9 Blue Tit, 8 Robin, 1 Great S. Woodpecker, .

On one of the few occasions i was looking up to the ridge i picked up 11 Jay moving west.- look at Doug Stannards earlier post and my next one. Cley in Norfolk reported 270 + this morning , are we in for a Jay invasion - many years since the last one

Moving up to the top field - 6 Wheatear, 40 Goldfinch, 8 Skylark, 1 Merlin

Posted October 4th, 2012 at 5:48 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Start Point

Had a message from Alan Searle saying he caught and rang a Yellow-browed Warbler in Start Farm this morning.

Posted October 4th, 2012 at 5:37 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Berry Hd

Still good numbers of warblers around Berry Head but nothing rare - yet.. but my first ever Marsh Tit for the site was not expected (only one prevoius record), otherwise: 28 Chiffchaffs, 11 Blackcap, 9 Goldcrest and now 5 Stonechat.

Marsh Tit, Berry Hd 04/10/12      longtailed Tit Berry hd 04/10/12

Marsh Tit, Berry Hd                                                                   Long-tailed Tit-  looking Autumnal!

Posted October 4th, 2012 at 5:01 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Bicton

Approx 30 mistle thrushes in fields behind Bicton College

Posted October 4th, 2012 at 4:56 pm by Steve Oliver in Bird News

East bank off Froward Point

The banks either side of Dartmouth (East and West Banks) are often a hot spot for feeding seabirds. Today I followed up reports by local fishermen that a good concentration of Balearic Shearwaters were feeding over the East Bank, ESE of Froward Point. From the boat we saw at least 35 Balearic and one Manx, though there were far more (3-4x this) earlier in the week. State of tide is critical for this feeding activity. From sightings over the last 3 years this is looking like a Balearic hotspot.

Posted October 4th, 2012 at 3:08 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

A bright clear but cool morning resulted in some obvious visible migration. Swallows were going through generally in groups of around 6 to 8 birds but one flock totalled 25 - well over 50 through in around 30 minutes. However best migration was of a flock of 13 jays heading south west together.

Around 12 wheatears still, skylarks well over 50 and the first 2 stonechats of the autumn.

Posted October 4th, 2012 at 10:46 am in Bird News

Wednesday 3rd October 2012

Bowling Green Marsh,Topsham & Mudbanks, Exmouth

Bowling Green Marshes plenty of Black tailed Godwit, Teal, Widgeon, several Greenshank, Redshank, Dunlin, Curlew, along with Shovellers, Canada's, a couple of Greylag Geese on view with just  1 x Curlew Sandpiper, 1 x Spotted Redshank must have a special mention.

Mudbank Exmouth  Again plenty of widgeon, Mallard, Shelduck and my first 50+ Brent Geese and 6 + Pintails of the season all showing well and feeding on Eel Grass on a dropping tide.

Posted October 3rd, 2012 at 9:00 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

This morning a large flock of 200+ Black Headed Gull included 8 Med Gull ( 4ad, 3 2w, 1 1w ) a site record .

Offshore 100 Gannet, 6 Balearic Shearwater and a Razorbill.

On the marshes 85 Teal. a Wheatear in the field . Overhead migrants included 2 Siskin and a Crossbill

Posted October 3rd, 2012 at 6:25 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Soar

With the weather forecast not matching reality, Steve Cox and I made a later start than usual; everything appeared very quiet but at c11am a Yellow-browed Warbler popped out of the willows west of Soar Mill Cove. Showed well for a few minutes. Otherwise the best we could muster was: 19 Golden Plovers over East Soar Farm; 3 Chiffchaffs; 7 Goldcrests; 40+ Swallows; and 2 Blackcaps.

Posted October 3rd, 2012 at 6:03 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Kingsbridge Estuary

Nothing spectacular but a good mix of waders: 420 curlew, 1 whimbrel, 10 grey plover, 13 blackwits, 1 knot, 2 greenshank, 177 mallard, 540 black-headed gull, 250 herring gull & 2 grey wagtail.

Posted October 3rd, 2012 at 2:59 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Orcombe Point, Exmouth.

           Managed to catch the end of the Sooty Shearwater passage with two West at 0730. Also, 0700-0900, 23 Balearic Shearwaters and an adult light phase Arctic Skua all West. Surprise of the morning was a close Black-throated Diver flying East, and still in summer plumage.Also one Wheatear and an impressive flock of 12 Ravens low West.

Posted October 3rd, 2012 at 11:44 am by Brian Heasman in Bird News

Berry Hd

Passerine watching this morning (of note): 19 Goldcrest, 21 Chiffchaff, 7 Blackcap, 1 Wheatear, 3 Coal Tit (on top of headland) 3 Stonechat - perhaps more than the normal resident Song Thrushes around today.

Moving overhead mostly SW: 16 Meadow Pipits, 2 alba Wagtails, 1 Grey Wagtail, 14 House Martin, 10 Swallow, 35 Goldfinch, 6 Chaffinch, 14 Siskins, 15 Linnet, 7 Greenfinch, 1 Redpoll.

Brief look out to sea birdwise ver quiet but 4 Harbour Porpoise very close in looking from top of headland.

Posted October 3rd, 2012 at 11:06 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Skern

07:15 - 09:00

6 Mediterranean Gulls (3A inc red PAL4, 3 2nd S); 1 Dark-bellied Brent; 4 Knot; 64 Dunlin; 33 Ringed Plover; 1 Turnstone; 4 Bar-tailed Godwit; 2 Common Gull; 5 Great Black-backed Gull; 4 Wigeon; c600 Oystercatcher; c120 Curlew; flock of c50 Linnet and 6 Meadow Pipit.

Posted October 3rd, 2012 at 10:22 am by Maurice Clements in Bird News

A Garden Nightjar

This Nightjar spent well over an hour resting on this bench in a garden in Galmpton (near Brixham) on Friday 28th September. Many thanks to Kay Deare for sending this on to us.

A Garden Nightjar

 

Posted October 3rd, 2012 at 8:50 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Tuesday 2nd October 2012

Matford Pool

1 Green Sandpiper at Matford Pool at about 1.45 this afternoon

Posted October 2nd, 2012 at 9:17 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Start Point

Seawatch 10:00-18:40, SW5 building 7, heavy rain 15:30 clearing 17:50. 326 Sooty Shearwaters (and they were still moving through when I left, many distant birds and in groups, largest flock 18!), 82 Balearic Shearwaters, 5 Manx Shearwaters, 5 Arctic Skuas, Great Skua, 2 Puffins, Great Northern Diver, 2 Red-throated Divers, 77 Razorbills, 7 Guillemot.

Posted October 2nd, 2012 at 8:18 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay.

The Pectoral Sandpiper last seen feeding on the marsh at 18.45 last night - no sign of it today

Both marshes held 80+ Teal, 1 Wheatear, 3 Jay flew through. Offshore 2 Arctic Tern flew east , 2 Guillemot , 4 Common Scoter, 1 -1st w Med Gull

Posted October 2nd, 2012 at 6:18 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Berry Head

08:00-16:00 A moderate south west wind and afew showers. Loads of Gannets, Kittiwakes and Gulls feeding from the Bay and upto a mile off the Head, bringing in lots of Skuas and Shearwaters. 46 Sooty Shearwater, 33 Balearic Shearwaters, 8 Manx Shearwaters, 2 Storm Petrels, 5 Pomarine Skuas, 31 Arctic Skuas, 37 Great Skuas and 1 Little Gull. Also 4 Harbour Porpoises. PA, ML

Posted October 2nd, 2012 at 5:24 pm by Paul Albrechtsen in Bird News

Clennon Valley

An early visit this morning revealed a Cetti's still where Mike had reported it. Also present a male Pintail and 3 Shovelers

Posted October 2nd, 2012 at 2:42 pm by Terry Edworthy in Bird News

Monday 1st October 2012

Clennon Valley

Cetti's Warbler still present around middle pond also 1 Sedge Warbler and 2 Chiffchaff.

Posted October 1st, 2012 at 7:08 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Soar

08:35-17:15

Gave it a good go today but little to add to what Rob saw, just a handful more of Chiffchaffs and Goldcrest , Red-legged Partridge ( between Soar Mill Cove and Southdown ), 8 Siskins and 3 Crossbills.

That Corncrake in Malborough would not have lasted long had it been so brazen on 23rd September, 1861. Stating that Corncrakes occured commonly along the south coast in autumn, D'urban and Matthew also wrote in their book on Devon Birds ( published in 1892 ) that 84 were shot at Malborough on that date !

Posted October 1st, 2012 at 6:49 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

No further sightings of the 2 Cattle Egret by 18.00

On T'stone Marsh the Pectoral Sandpiper still on show -last seen 14.30. Also on the marsh 1 Water Rail, 1 Little Grebe, 35 Teal, 1 Jay

Around the Bay this morning - 1 Sandwich Tern, 3 Wheatear, 1 Reed Warbler, 2 Reed Bunting, 1 Coal Tit,

1 Jay ( both the latter in the copse more indicative of birds moving through), 350 Swallow ( inc 1 albino seen by AJL and Mike Miller) 1 Sand martin , 1 Water Rail, 30 Meadow Pipit, 3 Chiffchaff

Posted October 1st, 2012 at 6:17 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Malcolm Sakespeare`s trip to Hartland point

between the hours of 7.10 - 9.10 am with a fresh south westerly  saw

2 Shag

100+ Gannet

9 Balearic Shearwaters

6 Manx Shearwatwaters

2 Pomarine Skua (1st winter)
 
10 Kittiwake
 
205 Auks (Guillemots+Razorbills)
 

Posted October 1st, 2012 at 4:22 pm by David & Gillian Churchill in Bird News

East Soar to Soar Mill Cove

Wryneck still at Soar Mill Cove.

Also: water rail & grasshopper warbler at reedbed at East Soar, 120 swallow, 155 meadow pipit, grey wagtail, 2 whinchat, 3 wheatear, 37 robin, 9 blackcap, 13 chiffchaff, 9 goldcrest and 7 jay moving west in groups of 5 & 2.

Posted October 1st, 2012 at 2:31 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

Nothing as exciting as Cattle Egrets or Corncrakes, just 8 wheatear, single snipe, skylarks up to 50+ and 30 linnet.

Posted October 1st, 2012 at 1:34 pm in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

2 CATTLE EGRET at 10.20 this am in field with cattle at South Huish Marsh- last seen flying towards Thurlestone - photo'd by Terry Lakeman

Full report later

Posted October 1st, 2012 at 12:55 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Corncrake

These amazing photos were taken by Barry Rankine yesterday of a Corncrake seen walking along the main road in Marlborough!!

Corncrake
Corncrake

Corncrake
Corncrake

Posted October 1st, 2012 at 10:47 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Berry Hd

Sunday 30 Sept... Late posting

Seawatching for 2.5hrs : 24 Balearic Shearwaters, 11 Arctic Skuas, 1 Great Skua, 2 Common Tern, 2 Sandwich Terns and  4 Harbour Porpoise off shore. 

Posted October 1st, 2012 at 9:12 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

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