Devon Bird Sightings: Bird News from November 2012

2020 Records request

If you saw any of the records below please submit a description to the County Recorder Recorder@DevonBirds.org to ensure they make the official record. Many thanks.

·         Bee-eater 03-Aug Wistlandpound Res

·         Caspian Gull 15-Apr Fremington Pill

·         Caspian Gull 14- Sep Powderham

·         Crane [3] 22-Mar Milton Abbot

·         Crane [2] 24-Jun nr Ottery

·         Glossy Ibis 20-Jun South Efford Marsh

·         Glossy Ibis  02-Nov Seaton Marshes

·         Golden Oriole 07-Apr Fremington Pill

·         Golden Oriole 28-May Weston Mill

·         Golden Oriole [2] 23-Jun Bolt Head

·         Greenland WF Goose 20-Dec Roadford

·         

·         

 

·         Green-winged Teal Nov/Dec Exe Estuary

·         Grey Partridge 13-May Bishops Tawton

·         Grey Partridge 12-Nov Exminster Marshes

·         Leach's Petrel 30- Sep Labrador Bay

·          Leach's Petrel 31-Oct Sidmouth

·        Long-tailed Skua 04-Jul Dawlish Warren

·         Montagu's Harrier 17-May West Dart River

·         Ring-necked Duck Jan/Feb Meeth

·         Spotted Crake 09-Apr East Down

·        Stone-curlew [2] 22-Sep South Huish

·         

·         

Posted June 18th at 11:40 pm by Kevin Rylands in Bird News

DEVON BIRDS BRANCH MEETINGS AND FIELD TRIPS - UPDATE

At a recent Council Meeting it was agreed that Field Trips (Guided Walks) and Indoor Meetings could restart as soon as Branches were happy to proceed, with all necessary Covid safe precautions in place. 

Full details are now on the website.

Taw & Torridge Branch will not be re-starting Indoor or Outdoor Meetings before January 2022.

Posted April 16th at 11:17 am by Mike Daniels 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

Friday 30th November 2012

Velator reserve

Ringing this morning produced a good variety of about 16 species and the 41 birds ringed included 3 Warblers! One each of Chiffchaff, Blackcap and Cetti's, or could it be 4 with Goldcrest?

A good sized flock of Goldfinches feeding on Alder cones, but only 4 ringed.

Posted November 30th, 2012 at 9:51 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

black redstart

A juvenile black redstart spotted in my bideford garden this afternoon. The bird was seen several times.. No photos unfortunately!

Posted November 30th, 2012 at 8:10 pm by Sara Elliott in Bird News

Brambling

A nice find on the walk home this afternoon was a female brambling in with 25+ chaffinch in trees by the skate park opposite the mill on the exe pub in exeter at 15:35 

Posted November 30th, 2012 at 6:12 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Otter Estuary 29 November

Belated post for yesterday: Drake Mandarin Duck visible from the hide on the east side of the Otter yesterday afternoon. Been present since at least Tuesday.


Posted November 30th, 2012 at 5:56 pm by Chris Townend in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Birds on the marshes little change from yesterday. This morning all the activity was in the bay - 11 Ringed Plover on the rocks , Great N Diver and 10 Razorbill on the sea and passage of - 60 Wigeon west in 4 flocks ( still 80 on the marsh ) 7 Common Scoter-e, 2 Teal -w , 2 Shelduck -w ( first since the juv's left in july) 1 Snipe in off ,  1 Brent Goose -w , 1m Red B Merganser -e

This evening at South Milton Ley  the Starling roost was 50,000 +with a Peregrine in attendance.

Bob B ringed 4 more Chiffchaff and had a Siskin over

Posted November 30th, 2012 at 5:55 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Torbay

A check of the three main beaches today produced: 4 Black-necked Grebes, 2 Great Northern Divers, 27 Great Crested Grebes, 29 Common Scoter.

At Broadsands: 10 Cirl Buntings on seed this morning, 1 Reed Bunting, 8 collybita Chiffchaffs in Marsh, 3 Firecrests together along road (possibly 4 in total), 7-8 Goldcrests, 1 lesser Redpoll, the pale - possible Scandinavian Rock Pipit was again on the damp meadow.

male Firecrest Broadsands 30 Nov 12 ML female Firecrest Broadsands 30 Nov 12 ML

Clennon Valley:2 Firecrest, 1 abietinus/tristis Chiffchaff, 4 collybita type Chiffchaffs, 5 goldcrests, 4 Water Rail, 1 Pochard 1 Snipe and 2 Siskins

Posted November 30th, 2012 at 5:16 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Mansands

A bit on the chilly side this morning! A Redpoll was calling from a tree by the carpark when I got out of a warm car. Something unusual for here was a Swan flying down the valley towards the marsh, but it didn't stay and flew towards Sharkham. On the marsh were the usual Mallards (32), Teals (37) and Moorhens (11), also 9 Gadwalls (5 males 4 females) and a nice surprise - a male Wigeon feeding at the bottom end of the marsh. There were also 29 Snipe, 5 Water Rails and 2 Grey Herons.

Posted November 30th, 2012 at 2:41 pm by Paul Albrechtsen in Bird News

Thursday 29th November 2012

WAXWING IN PLYMOUTH

Whilst getting petrol at Tesco Express Higher Compton about

1030 this morning 29th, alerted by a trilling call and soon found

a Waxwing on a nearby TV aerial. Watched for a couple of minutes

but after returning from paying for petrol bird had departed.

Posted November 29th, 2012 at 7:38 pm by roger smaldon in Bird News

Wrafton

On the pond early afternoon now at least 14 Wigeon, a pair of Gadwall and 2 female Shoveler along with a Teal. Plus a big (cold induced?) influx of Coot - 2 yesterday, at least 16 today. 20+ Moorhen.

In the reserve about 5 Chiffchaffs.

 

Posted November 29th, 2012 at 6:39 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Bird of the month found on South Huish Marsh this morning- a Bittern flushed from the reeds and landed 50 yards away- also seen by other observers twice afterwards.Also on that marsh - 4 Pintail, 50 Wigeon,

80 Teal, 2 gadwall, 1 Shoveler, 15 Snipe., 1 lapwing , Brent Goose.

On the sea a Great C Grebe & 30 Wigeon

On T'stone Marsh - 25 Teal, 8 Shoveler, 4 Lapwing, 65 Snipe , 1 Water pipit

At 13.00 a f Black Redstart on my drive

Posted November 29th, 2012 at 6:33 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Common Scoters - Downend & Baggy Point

Now 17 female Common Scoters at Downend & 133 females at Baggy.

 Also 4 Red throated Divers, one at Baggy & 3 flying south

 2 miles west of Baggy Point towards Hartland.

These Hebridean sheep introduced by the NT several years ago looking very relaxed this afternoon in the sunshine.



Posted November 29th, 2012 at 6:14 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Soar

A glorious frosty,windless morning tempted me up to the heights!

Good to find a single flock of 21 cirl buntings and three seperate flocks of skylarks totalling 320 birds, all on stubbles. Also 23 golden plovers, 7 lapwings, two snipe & 39 blackbirds plus peregrine over.

Posted November 29th, 2012 at 4:31 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Dawlish Warren NNR

There were 5 Waxwings at Dawlish Warren NNR this afternoon. They were still there at 15:50 and seemed to be settling in for the night. They were in a big tree beside the golf course east of the main pond. Apparently another 20 flew over heading towards Exmouth. 

The Black-necked Grebe was on the main pond all day, giving excellent views. 

Posted November 29th, 2012 at 4:12 pm by Susan Murphy in Bird News

23 Waxwings

Sunny morning in Wonford Street, Exeter, in tree with white berries on corner of Kent Close, saw 23 fab Waxwings coming and going against blue skies. Stunning! Seen at 12 noon.

Posted November 29th, 2012 at 2:08 pm by mic morgan in Bird News

Exeter Canal

Good walk this morning - lots of birds about. Highlights -

2 fairly tame redpoll just past the Double Locks.

2 fairly tame bullfinches (m&f) near the swing bridge - didn't seem to mind passing cyclists.

At least 2 snipe on the ponds, looking from the hide nearest the Double Locks (the one with the fence that kingfishers often perch on)

Possibly 2 waxwing overhead at the Matford Marsh, but difficult to tell because of the sun.

Posted November 29th, 2012 at 12:08 pm by Alfie Pugh in Bird News

Back Online

We have working internet!  A few updates:

Please note I have moved house.  My new contact details will be in the December addition of The Harrier.

Saw three Spoonbill yesterday on the Tamar Estuary near Bull Point.

Just had a phone call, there's 9 Waxwings at Wonford in Exeter. Sunning themselves on the top of an ash tree in a private garden.

Cattle Egret is still about on the Axe Estuary, seen a couple of days ago on Bridge Marsh.

Posted November 29th, 2012 at 10:22 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Berry Hd

Nigel Smallbones sent a message saying 3 Waxwings around car park area this morning.

Posted November 29th, 2012 at 9:03 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Wednesday 28th November 2012

Thurlestone Bay

 On T'stone Marsh early - 10 Snipe, 8 Lapwing, 15 Teal, 14 Wigeon, 5 Shoveler.

More duck on South Huish Marsh - 80 Wigeon, 100+ Teal, 6 Pintail, 5 Shoveler, 2 Gadwall, the Brent Goose , 1 Lapwing . A Merlin flew through.

Offshore- Another Brent Goose, 1 Great N Diver, 13 Wigeon ( on sea ) , late afternoon 14 came in high off the sea and went straight up the valley.

Bob B ringing at S M Ley had 30+ Chiffchaff ( he ringed 9 )also 3 Brambling visiting his feeding station

Posted November 28th, 2012 at 5:23 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Matford waxwings

After work this afternoon walked down towards the matford park and ride when 10+ waxwings flew over head and watched them flying over the fields towards matford marsh this was about 14:30 tried to refind them along the cycle path only found 4 chiffchaffs with 1 possible  pale Tristis type ( no call heard) will look again tomorrow 

Also 2 jay and 2 buzzards 

Posted November 28th, 2012 at 4:51 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Berry Hd

At least 22 Waxwing were present at Berry Hd this morning - still 3 around late this afternoon.

Waxwing 1w male Berry Hd 28 Nov 2012 ML    Waxwing 1w female Berry Hd 28 Nov 2012 ML    Waxwing ad female Berry Hd 28 Nov 2012 ML

above: from left to right 1w male, 1w female and ad female

Posted November 28th, 2012 at 4:25 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake - Wedneday 28th

Lower Tamar Lake, Wednesday

A walk along the lakeside in very muddy conditions revealed :

4 Goosander (3 males; 4 Great Crested Grebes; 20+ Mallard; 79 Canada Geese; 10+ Teal; 1 Grey Heron; 1 Marsh Tit; several Blue and Great Tits, 1 Coal Tit; 2 Nuthatches; 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 4 Chaffinches on the feeders; 1 Raven and 1 Buzzard over.

On 19th Nov. 4 Whooper Swans were reported on the Upper Lake by Malcolm Shakespeare.

Harvey Kendall

Posted November 28th, 2012 at 3:31 pm by Harvey Kendall in Bird News

Wrafton

On the pond still at least 12 Wigeon, but now a pair of Gadwall have joined the 2 drakes. In the reserve at least 2 Chiffchaffs

Posted November 28th, 2012 at 3:22 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Ashford Strand, River Taw.

13:30 - 14:30

c3500 Golden Plover. A conservative estimate, the sky was full of them.

c500 Dunlin; 84 Sanderling; c2000 Lapwing; 15 Wigeon and just 2 Little Egrets.

Posted November 28th, 2012 at 3:16 pm by Maurice Clements in Bird News

barn owl

driving home from night shift in plymouth saw a beautiful barn owl sat on fencing on chudleigh road near alphington, Exeter

Posted November 28th, 2012 at 11:22 am by neal woodhead in Bird News

Berry Hd

Nigel Smallbones phoned in: 3 Waxwings were still present at Berry Head and 7 Crossbills flew over .

Posted November 28th, 2012 at 9:21 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Exmouth

Gypsy Lane - 19 waxwing in poplar beside entrance to the community college this morning with a possible 20th bird by the traffic lights at the junction with Gypsy Lane and Exeter Rd.

Posted November 28th, 2012 at 8:11 am by Matt Knott in Bird News

Tuesday 27th November 2012

Thurlestone Bay

Early morning on T'stone marsh- 5 Little Egret - flew off up the valley at 07.45, 40 Teal, 12 Wigeon, 5 Shoveler, 10 Lapwing , 1 Snipe.

A new site record for South Huish Marsh - a diving Great Crested Grebe flew off at 11.30. Also 55 Teal, 45 Wigeon , 1m Gadwall and 8 Pintail ( 3m 5f ) 15 Snipe and the Brent Goose.

Offshore a feeding group of 110 gannet, 4 Kittiwake , 6 Common Scoter, 1 Great N Diver flew east and a

RED T Diver flew into the bay and landed on the sea

Posted November 27th, 2012 at 6:04 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Exmouth

Gipsy Lane - 14 waxwing on return visit - spending most of their time in the tall poplar next to the entrance of the college on Gipsy Lane.

Belated news for 20/11 - gull showing some pro-american herring gull features including apparent almost wholly dark tail (limited pale bases to outer retrices only) present late afternoon on Maer Rocks. Unfortunately no undertail covert detail seen and tail/uppertail coverts not seen well enough to further the identification. May be worth looking out for though - see photo.

waxwings - exmouth community college
waxwings - exmouth community college

gull sp showing some features of american herring gull - 20/11
gull sp showing some features of american herring gull - 20/11

Posted November 27th, 2012 at 4:36 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

Exmouth

Gipsy Lane - 12+ waxwings at entrance to the community college at 3pm. In tall trees at the moment but they may be eyeing up the ornamental rowans inside the grounds, viewable from the main gate! Going to try for photos in a minute.

Posted November 27th, 2012 at 3:22 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

Bradiford

With the sterling efforts of Maurice (on Mattock) and Patrick (on mega strimmer) we planted up the second enclosure and made a good start on the last one. One more session should see the job finished.

Buzzard and a smattering of Meadow Pipits.

We were approached by an interested third party as we finished up asking if it's legal for the shooters in the field just across Bradiford Water to be putting grain down to attract the ducks and geese before shooting them? Not much point in having a reserve designed for birds to rest in if the local shoot is taking advantage if it....

Posted November 27th, 2012 at 2:10 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Berry Hd and Broadsands

There are now 30 or more Waxwing at Berry Hd!

Broadsands:  Whilst feeding the Cirl buntings (7 Today but 11+ yesterday) this morning a drake Smew flew in from the sea, semi circled the car park at about 30m height and then went whizzing off inland - sort of heading W-WNW. I've checked Clennon and Stoke Gabriel Mill pond but there was no sign of it.

1 sinensis Cormorant (right hand bird) with at least 5 carbo cormorants at Stoke Gabriel Mill Pond:

SinssCrmntStkGbrl271112ML1     SinssCrmntStkGbrl271112ML2

Posted November 27th, 2012 at 12:36 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

South Efford Marsh, Aveton Gifford

Just two water pipits at the east end of the marsh this morning.

Also peregrine & sparrowhawk over.

Anyone know of a large starling roost between Plymouth & Slapton?

Posted November 27th, 2012 at 12:00 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Monday 26th November 2012

Wembury Water Pipit

See below


Posted November 26th, 2012 at 10:01 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Wembury

A Water Pipit on the beach this morning. I spent several hours studying this bird. It is not a particularly obvious individual and I considered littoralis, mainly because of the legs appearing consistently dark in the field (despite photos suggesting otherwise) and the rather short and indistinct supercilium compared with typical Water. However, the very pale underparts (and sparse steaking below breast), colouration of uppers, gleaming white outer tail feathers and call, won the day. Latter was occasional short harsh note amongst Rock-like calls. 

Interesting that Dave has reported a littoralis-type today and Water Pipits are about at Averton Gifford too, so various possibilities. Not always an easy group though!

 

Posted November 26th, 2012 at 9:36 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Tamar estuary, Plymouth.

No sign of the Lesser Yellowlegs today at low tide but I didn't walk up beside the creek so it's no doubt in there somewhere.

From the causeway a Spotted Redshank was showing well along with four Greenshank.

Further down river at the outfall were eighty Avocets, eighty four Black tailed Godwits (one ringed), a single Bar tailed Godwit and forty Oystercatchers and a solitary Common Gull.  Also here were ten Wigeon plus a Chiffchaff.

Posted November 26th, 2012 at 5:11 pm in Bird News

Broadsands

 

Possible Scandinavian Rock Pipit Broadsands 26/11 DN

The pale Scandinavian-looking Rock Pipit was showing again by the flood pool ,late am. Also a Firecrest by the ditch and a Brambling on the seed.  

Posted November 26th, 2012 at 5:11 pm in Bird News

Aveton Gifford & West Charleton Marsh

On South Efford marsh at AG, 4 water pipits contrasting nicely with a rock pipit and c.20 meadow pipits.

Mid-afternoon at West Charleton turned up 6 pintail, 28 teal and 23 snipe. In the estuary 5 great crested grebes & 4 red-breasted mergansers.

Posted November 26th, 2012 at 4:17 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Clennon Valley

Chiffchaff numbers building at both Clennon and Broadsands where at least one abietinus/tristis still present (at both Sites) also at Clennon 2 Firecrest.

abietinus/tristis Chiffchaff Clennon Valley 26 Nov 2012 ML firecrest Clennon Valley 26 Nov 2012 NL2

Photos: Clennon Valley abietinus/tristis Chiffchaff and Firecrest.

Posted November 26th, 2012 at 2:54 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

No sign of the Black Redstart at lunchtime but the Little owl showing well. A pair of Stonechats and 80 Fieldfare. Starlings beginning to increase with around 400 today. In a pig field close to Smeatharpe village another 60 Fieldfare and a Green Sandpiper.

Posted November 26th, 2012 at 2:45 pm in Bird News

Berry Hd

One of the rangers at Berry Head emailed with a sighting of a Waxwing just above the quarry in scrub at Berry Hd at about 10am this morning. I decided to go over and found two in the same area. Josh Marshall then arrived, while watching the two we picked up two more flying over calling - our two birds flew up to join them, luckily all four then dropped back into the bushes for 10 mins before the all flew off, first high East then headed back West. Perhaps they dropped back in near the radar station area... 

Waxwing Berry Hd 26 Nov 2012 ML waxwings Berry Hd 26 Nov 2012ML

Posted November 26th, 2012 at 2:18 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Shelly Beach, Exmouth

Male Black Redstart on roof of Leeward Court at 1330hrs. 2 Goldeneye off Shelly Beach plus one Little Grebe there.

Posted November 26th, 2012 at 2:16 pm by Terry Smith in Bird News

Berry Head - Waxwings

Call from Mike Langman to say that a Berry Head ranger had located a waxwing near to the fort.

On arriving I met up with Mike and who beileved there were 2 on site which we were soon able to confirm.

Another 2 birds then flew in making a total of 4 birds! They were very steady, taking up residence in a bush near to the path while Brixhams entire population of dogs walked past.

They departed flying towards Brixham at about 1335hrs

Some shots below and video showing them 'trilling' that I mangaed to capture, some more I imagine from Mike later.

Waxwing, Berry Head
Waxwing, Berry Head

Waxwing, Berry Head
Waxwing, Berry Head

Click here for video footage of the birds including the calls

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5A64P3_d2is&feature=youtu.be

Posted November 26th, 2012 at 2:12 pm by Josh Marshall in Bird News

Bradiford reserve

Been in Bradiford reserve most of the morning witrh Maurice finally planting trees/shrubs in the enclosures. Finished one of the three and started on a second. We will be back tomorrow at ten a.m. if anyone is free to lend a hand??

A few Meadow Pipits about the reserve, and the semi-resident Buzzard also put in an appearance along with a female Sparrowhawk.

Posted November 26th, 2012 at 12:36 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Sunday 25th November 2012

Bowling green marsh

The female long tailed duck was still showing well this afternoon as was the spotted redshank, an unusual high tide with very few waders in, a kingfisher showed twice, 3 pochard, 7+ tufted duck, 30+ shoveler, 150+ wigeon, little grebe, 40+ lapwing, 2 snipe.

from the quay in topsham 7+ red breasted mergansers (5m,2f)

Posted November 25th, 2012 at 9:01 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Returned after a visit to Norfolk to find both marshes in full flood - highest water levels I have known . On the positive side big increase in Duck no's

This am T'stone Marsh held -70 Teal, 7 Shoveler, 9 Wigeon, 11 Lapwing, 8 Snipe, 1 Brent Goose

On South Huish Marsh - 40 Wigeon, 75 Teal, 2 Shoveler, 2m 1 f Pintail, 15 Snipe.

Offshore only 20 Gannet, On the rocks 12 Turnstone, 1 Ringed Plover

Posted November 25th, 2012 at 4:55 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Holne Moor

Sunday 25th November.

Above river Dart. 1 Woodcock, Small Mixed flocks of Fieldfare and Redwing on Holly and Hawthorn.

Out on the moor roosting in a force 8 gale, 70+ Golden Plover.

Posted November 25th, 2012 at 2:41 pm by David Turrell in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

This morning, a female/immature type Black Redstart on the fence to the right of the control tower was new for the site. Around 150 Fieldfares with a few Redwing mixed in, a single male Stonechat, 2 Snipe and about 80 Skylarks.

Yesterday driving past mid afternoon around 30 Golden Plover sitting out the dreadful weather but no sign this morning.

 

Posted November 25th, 2012 at 2:12 pm in Bird News

Wembury

Please note that due to various cliff falls, the path from the beach to the point is closed (but you could get round on the beach. Around one of the cliff falls at the beach, there was a cracking male Black Red that vapourised immediately after this photo and no sign after but must be around still.


Posted November 25th, 2012 at 11:56 am by Richard Billington in Bird News

Torbay

Pretty much everything tucked into Broadsands/Elberry area - not surprisingly after the gales yesterday: 10 Black-necked Grebes, 11 Great Northern Divers, 28 Great Crested Grebes, 31 Common Scoter, 1 Red-breasted Merganser, 1 Razorbill and 1 Guillemot.

Around Broadsands: 8 Cirl Buntings on seed in back of 2nd car park and 2 Reed Bunting, 1 Firecrest, 3 Goldcrest, 5 Chiffchaff, 1 Siberian Chiffchaff and one abietinus/tristis Chiffchaff. The possible Scandinavian Rock Pipit still on the damp meadow behind the beach and a 2nd W Mediterranean Gull with Black-headed Gulls off the beach.

 

Posted November 25th, 2012 at 10:24 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Saturday 24th November 2012

Bowling green marsh

Watched from the hide 13:20 till 15:45

the female long tailed duck showed very well at times, lots of disturbance from a female sparrowhawk made counting very difficult , the adult spotted redshank came in with 130+ redshank, 4 grey plover, 3+ knot, 30+ dunlin, 185+ avocet, 100+ Bar tailed godwit, 700+ black tailed godwits, 50+ lapwing, 4+ snipe, 2 Cetti's warbler, 3 pochard , 3 gadwall, 8+ tufted duck , 30+ shovelers , 100+ wigeon, 13+ greylag geese

Posted November 24th, 2012 at 7:33 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Wrafton

13 Wigeon 1 Gadwall and 2 Shoveler on the pond still and in the reserve, 30+ Redwing and 40+ Fieldfare.

Posted November 24th, 2012 at 3:51 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Landkey,n.devon

30 Redpoll in a private area of village at 11:30.

Posted November 24th, 2012 at 3:13 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Shoalstone, Brixham & Broadsands

Shoalstone:seawatch from the shelter between 1300-1400hrs produced: 1 Great Northern Diver, 14 Kittiwake, 23 Auks and about 30+ Gannets.

Broadsands: A brief look over the sea wall produced 7 Great Northern Divers and 1 Red-breasted Merganser.

Posted November 24th, 2012 at 2:35 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Brambling at Darts Farm

3 Brambling on the bird table by the hide. Large mixed flock of finches - Linnet, Goldfinch, Chaffinch, Greenfinch. Out on the wetland plenty of Wigeon and Teal along with a Kingfisher active around the site.

Posted November 24th, 2012 at 1:04 pm by Gareth Williams in Bird News

Friday 23rd November 2012

Babbacombe

Two Great Northern Divers off the beach today were presumably additional to those counted by ML in Torbay itself. No grebes seen off here however.

Posted November 23rd, 2012 at 8:12 pm in Bird News

Braunton

Caught a few birds in the garden this morning, including a female Blackcap, the 6th or 7th this autumn.

On Wrafton pond 13 Wigeon, 2 female Shoveler and a drake Gadwall.

Posted November 23rd, 2012 at 6:26 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Devils Point, Plymouth

A quick look from Devils Point today. Just one Great Northern Diver and an adult Med. Gull. Wish I could have got myself down there yesterday!!

Posted November 23rd, 2012 at 6:17 pm by Roy McCarthy in Bird News

River Caen/ River Taw.

1100-1500hrs   Very quiet on the river today after all the gunfire on wednesday.Only one swan(mute) seen. At the mouth of the caen on the salt marsh and in the air 1000+ Golden plover and 300+ Lapwing. At least 4 Spoonbill on isley marsh.

Posted November 23rd, 2012 at 4:11 pm in Bird News

Aveton Gifford

Quiet on the estuary highlighted by 7 common sandpipers.

Female blackcap and 2 chiffchaffs by slipway below car park.

Posted November 23rd, 2012 at 2:07 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Torbay & Clennon Valley

A sweep of the beaches this morning produced totals of: 16 Great Northern Divers, 3 Red-throated Divers, 9 Black-necked Grebes, 1 Slavonian Grebe, 12 Great Crested Grebes, 43 Common Scoter and 2 Red-breasted Mergansers. 3 Cirl Buntings on seed at Broadsands and a Redpoll flew over.

Clennon Valley: 2 Firecrest, 8 Chiffchaff, 1 abietinus/tristis Chiffchaff non calling, 7 Goldcrest, 1 Brambling, 3 Snipe, 4 Water Rail. 

Posted November 23rd, 2012 at 12:47 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Brixham Breakwater

Early morning walk along Brixham breakwater.

  11 Purple Sandpiper near the end by old fuel jetty, 6 Turnstones as well.

Posted November 23rd, 2012 at 10:40 am by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News

Kingsbridge

Tree Sparrow - a regular visitor to a friend's garden feeder (Paul Fivian)

Tree Sparrow, Paul Fivian, Kingsbridge 22.11.2012

Posted November 23rd, 2012 at 12:03 am in Bird News

Thursday 22nd November 2012

Red Kite

Had a call from Malcolm to say he saw a red kite over the a361 nr South Molton today

Posted November 22nd, 2012 at 7:47 pm by David & Gillian Churchill in Bird News

Broadsands

Lunchtime visit to Broadsands and Elberry Cove produced: 5 Great Northern Divers, 6 Black-necked Grebes, 9 Great Crested Grebes, 33 Common Scoter, 2 Red-breasted Mergansers - mostly sheltering  close to shoreline between Elberry Cove and the mussel farm buoys. The walk back over Elberry Headland was interesting - I was nearly blown over twice! Keep away from the cliff edges if anyone ventures out...

Posted November 22nd, 2012 at 2:14 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Berry Hd

The wind is still building from the SSW at the moment but it was gusting to force 10 according to the Brixham Coastguards when I left! Not surprisingly few birds were on the move, the highlights being 1 Manx Shearwater, 1 Little Gull and a Great Skua - BUT - the cetaceans where brilliant! At least 6 Harbour Porpoise often surfing the waves and some leaping clear of the water, then a pod of 8 Bottle-nosed Dolphins with a medium sized calf moved south and better still two White-beaked Dolphins feeding off the end of the headland about 600m offshore initially, although they were underwater much of the time they stayed in the area for 20+minutes from 0950hrs before moving off south.  

MD & IL stayed on until 14:40, with little reward other than another Bonxie, Balearic Shearwater and 6 Common Scoter.

Posted November 22nd, 2012 at 12:47 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Waxwing at Salcombe

This Waxwing is gorging on berries this morning in a private garden at Salcombe (South Hams). Thanks to Sara Lovick for the news and photos.

Waxwing (c) Sara Lovick
Waxwing (c) Sara Lovick

Waxwing (c) Sara Lovick
Waxwing (c) Sara Lovick

Posted November 22nd, 2012 at 11:18 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Wednesday 21st November 2012

Baggy point

The Auk is a Common Guillemot.

Wrafton Pond has 9 Wigeon and 2 Shoveler.

Posted November 21st, 2012 at 4:06 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

River Caen/River Taw.

1200-1415hrs The 4 Whooper swans and 6 Mute swans were on the marsh opposite vellator quay,but were put to flight by half wits with guns and dogs (sorry hunters) 20 Snipe were also flushed.At the mouth of the caen on the salt marsh were 400+ Golden plover 200+ Lapwing and 500+ Starling.

Posted November 21st, 2012 at 3:19 pm in Bird News

Skern

Dave Paull found a Great Northern Diver on the estuary off the Skern during his web count on Sunday, and it was still there this afternoon. Otherwise very quiet apart from a Merlin chasing down and catching a Meadow Pipit. It then flew off with its prey towards Braunton Burrows.

Posted November 21st, 2012 at 3:15 pm by Roger Doble in Bird News

Common Scoter & Grey Auk

The Common Scoters have moved from Downend to Baggy & the numbers have increased to 103 (2 males & the remainder females).  In the flock of scoters there was an interesting auk, grey plumage & a similar shape & size to a Guillemot. I phoned John Turner & he is kindly on his way to check this bird out.

Don't panic everybody - will keep you posted!

Posted November 21st, 2012 at 2:14 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Tuesday 20th November 2012

Brixham, Breakwater Beach

Terry Lakeman found this 1st winter Black Guillemot feeding just off Breakwater Beach, Brixham this morning at about 10.30am

Black Guillemot Brixham 20 Nov 2012 TL

 Unfortunately it had gone when I checked later in the afternoon.

 

Posted November 20th, 2012 at 7:53 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Lundy Chough

As blog watchers may have read elsewhere, a Chough has been seen on Lundy on several occasions since first being photographed at Shutter Point (the extreme SW corner of the island) on 30 Oct. The most recent report was by James Leonard on 16 Nov. The bird is unringed and it has been suggested that this individual, as well as other recent unringed singletons in Scilly and Cornwall, could have originated in Ireland, though a wandering bird from the Welsh population also seems highly likely. Choughs bred on Lundy until the second half of the 19th century and it would be nice to think that this might be the vanguard of a future recolonisation...

Posted November 20th, 2012 at 7:43 pm by Tim Jones in Bird News

Berry Head part 2

In the end quality but not quantity. Around 13:00 the wind and rain began to ease. In this clearance a further 44 Little Gulls including one flock of 26, but the best bird came through at 13:38 in the form of a juv/1w Long-tailed Skua - a very striking bird where the normally (barred) pale rump looked white with little barring. Perhaps Devon's latest record for this species?

Final totals 09:30-15:30: Long-tailed Skua, 2 Bonxies, 51 Little Gulls (35 ad, 4 2w, 12 1w), Red-throated Diver, Red-breasted Merganser, 15 Common Scoter, 2-3 Harbour Porpoise

Yesterday 19th, 08;30-10:30: Pomarine Skua, Bonxie, Great Northern Diver, 572 Gannets, c600 Kittiwakes, 755 Auks, 24 Common Scoter, 4+ Common Dolphins, 3 Harbour Porpoise 

Posted November 20th, 2012 at 5:42 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

A late afternoon visit just before dusk once the rain had stopped found 58 Fieldfare, 2 Stonechat and 10 Golden Plover. However the best sighting was of a large bat hunting around the sillage mounds - from size, shape, lack of long ears and habit of deep dives etc, i took it to be a noctule.

Posted November 20th, 2012 at 5:38 pm in Bird News

Berry Head

This morning  seawatching was hard work in heavy rain and gales, with just a few Gannets and Kittiwakes moving most of the morning. Best birds between 930-1300 were a group of 7 Little Gull (ads, juv and 2nd yrs) south at 1130 and a single Bonxie, Red-breasted Merganser and a diving duck probably Tufted.

Posted November 20th, 2012 at 2:20 pm in Bird News

Monday 19th November 2012

Devils Point, Plymouth

Very windy here today, rain on and off affecting visibility.

Four Brent Geese flew across The Sound this morning, heading towards The Cattewater. My second record of this species at D.P. but the first were on the wrong side of the Tamar. So not a D.P. tick but a very welcome Plymouth tick.

Later in the day a Great Northern Diver was seen off Drakes Island as well as two fly-by Common Sands. Otherwise quiet apart from an adult Med. Gull.

Posted November 19th, 2012 at 7:45 pm by Roy McCarthy in Bird News

East Prawle

Working in the field by the water tower today and surprised when an Egyptian Goose flew over. Also 12 Golden Plover.

Posted November 19th, 2012 at 6:48 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Shoalstone Brixham

Watching from the car park  1130-1230, a steady trickle of Gannets and Kittiwakes  moving south past the bay, w9ith more auks moving towards midday as visibiity improved. Around 1200 a Little Auk flew in across the bay and rapidly onward southwest towards Berry Head.

Posted November 19th, 2012 at 4:48 pm in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

Before the rain arrived I managed a walk around the reserve. A female merlin just north of the s bend in the lane may have been the bird I saw hunting yesterday to the west of the village. The high tide roost comprised of curlew (74), golden plover (4 + 12 on another field) and a few dunlin. About 60 lapwing were well spread out over the fields as were snipe with several flocks of c10 flying around. On the pools and in the ditches there were c500 wigeon, c100 teal, c50 shoveller and 6 pintail and on the lagoon at least 6 gadwall. Over 200 brent geese flew onto the fields near Turf. I could only see 8 juveniles/first winter birds within the flock. Elsewhere 15 fieldfares, 2 redwings and  a couple of chiffchaffs on the canal bank.

Posted November 19th, 2012 at 3:27 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Wrafton

11 Wigeon 1 Gadwall and lots of displaying Mallard on the pond. Goldcrest and Teal in the reserve.

Climbed up to the Tawny Owl box the other day to see if anyone had taken up residence. Pesky Squirrel had built a nest in there! I evicted it.

Posted November 19th, 2012 at 12:34 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Brixham

Had a good walk around Berry Head, very quiet but over 800 Guillemots on seabird colony.

Moved on to the Brakewater and had 7 Purple Sandpipers by the old fuel bunkering platform and in the distance by mussel farm a very large group of Scoter, to far to count. Lets hope weather will be good for Sundays boat trip in the bay!!

Posted November 19th, 2012 at 8:30 am by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News

Sunday 18th November 2012

Okehampton

4.10pm 200 or more starlings flying over Okehampton Railway Station towards the Army Camp. There have been large roosts there in previous years.

Posted November 18th, 2012 at 7:23 pm by Vince Bedford in Bird News

Taw & Torridge Estuary / Braunton Burrows

During this morning's WeBS count we were surprised to see a late (Northern) Wheatear on the tide line near the White House. Later on it was running around on the car park. Also a  Great Northern Diver feeding actively not far offshore between Crow Point and Airy Point. Superb views in the pin-sharp light.

Posted November 18th, 2012 at 6:18 pm by Tim Jones in Bird News

Plymouth

The Plym Estuary welcomed me back, in glorious conditions, after a sustained period of neglect! Little Egrets are up to 12 but Curlews disappointing at just 36. Also 112 Redshanks, 2 Dunlins, 2 Common Sandpipers, 1 female Teal, 2 Little Grebes, 3 Goldcrests.

Later (midday / early afternoon) on the falling tide, the Lesser Yellowlegs showed at Ernesettle Creek on both sides of the river though always quite distant (best viewed from the patch of grass which gives access to the estuary-side below the football pitch). Also a couple of Greenshanks and c12 Teal there.

Posted November 18th, 2012 at 5:51 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

watched from the hide 09:10 till 11:25

Avocet numbers have increased to 303+, 4 knot, 60+ bar tailed godwits, 45+ lapwing, 6+ snipe, good numbers of black tailed godwits but lots of movement so hard to do a count, same with dunlin probably 100+ , 4 pintail(2m,2f), 6 pochard and 4+ tufted duck, 250+ wigeon, 2 Cetti's warblers,  2 little grebes, a group of 200+ Brent geese over 

11:30 till 12:30 viewing platform 

whilst scanning the field on the left of the path to the viewing platform came across a Water pipit among 5+ meadow pipits showing well at times a nice find, a kingfisher showed briefly, and a group of 5 red breasted mergansers was of exton 

12:40 till 14:10 along goat walk 

had news that the female long tailed duck had been seen of the quay in topsham finally refound it of goat walk at 13:12 and managed to watch it well for next 45 minutes , also another kingfisher flew over from exminster marsh. 

A good mornings birding 

Posted November 18th, 2012 at 5:20 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

A glorious morning and some better birding than of late. The Little Owl showed well in its usual place being kept company by 2-3 Stock Doves. 22 Golden Plover, around 30 Skylarks, a single Stonechat, 4 Buzzards, 8 Fieldfare and 35 Lapwings heading North West.

Posted November 18th, 2012 at 5:08 pm in Bird News

Budleigh Salterton

A short eared owl seen from the coastal path just to the East of Budleigh Salteron this afternoon. It was being mobbed by about six crows and had climbed to a considerable height. It eventually departed to the North.

Posted November 18th, 2012 at 4:55 pm by John Crabb in Bird News

Velator reserve

Ringing this morning produced a fine range of species including two Chiffchaffs amongst 46 birds ringed. No sign of any of the large flock of Goldfinches seen yesterday....

James Leonard reports 6 Wigeon and 4 Shoveler on Wrafton Pond. He also saw a Chough on Lundy last week.

Posted November 18th, 2012 at 4:50 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

West Dartmoor

1st winter snow bunting on track to bleak house, Amicombe Hill on both 13 and 15 November.  Close view possible, but lengthy walk from Fox & Hounds pub.

Posted November 18th, 2012 at 3:21 pm by pete Stevens in Bird News

Torbay

A sweep of the Torbay beaches (Preston, Goodrington and Broadsands) today produced: 11 Black-necked Grebes, 7 Great Crested Grebes, 2 Great Northern Divers, 41 Common Scoter, 1 Wigeon.

At Broadsands at least 6 Cirl Buntings, 1 Firecrest, 1 'eastern' chiffchaff, 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap, 3 Goldcrest, 1 Water Rail, the possible Scandinavian Rock Pipit back again today on the grassy pool behind the beachuts with another similar looking bird, 2 Pied Wagtails and a Meadow Pipit the only petrosus Rock Pipits were on the beach.

Photos: Firecrest showing well at back of 2nd car park.

FirecrestBrdsnds181112ML FirecrestBrdsnds181112ML2

 

Posted November 18th, 2012 at 1:33 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Beesands

Another depressing WeBS count for the ley.....just 2 Mute Swans, 11 Mallard and 3 Moorhen. 3 or 4 Water Rails calling. Offshore single Great Crested Grebe and Great northern Diver in Start Bay.

Posted November 18th, 2012 at 1:29 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Saturday 17th November 2012

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 08:30 till 12:15

on the walk down to the hide a female hen harrier put all the waders up before dropping down to the reeds by the clyst ( also seen by George wall from the hide). Avocet numbers now 267+, 90+ bar tailed godwits, 750+ black tailed godwits, 6+ knot , 5 turnstone, 110+ dunlin, 7 greenshank, 12+ snipe, 6 pochard,8+ tufted     duck, 4 pintail(3f,1m), 15+ shoveler, 41+ lapwing, c100+ wigeon, 10+ jay, sparrowhawk, kestrel, 2 buzzard, good numbers of redwing and a few Fieldfare, by viewing platform 25+ long tailed tit and 3 goldcrests 

did not get chance to post last night but a quick look at exminster marsh on Friday afternoon produced a Firecrest in bushes before the swans nest pub at 14:35 and the whooper swan was still by the bridge over the railway line 

also received news today that 2 scaup were on bowling green marsh on Friday 1 female and 1 juv ( thanks Chris ) 

Posted November 17th, 2012 at 5:28 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Clennon Valley & Broadsands

Clennon Valley: 8 Chiffchaff, 1 eastern type Chiffchaff (perhaps tristis!) not calling. 7 Goldcrest, 4 Water Rail, 1 Brambling, 2 Siskin.

Broadsands: checked the gull roost this evening after looking over the marsh: 3 Cirl Buntings on seed in 2nd car park, in marsh area; 1 Water Rail, 1 Chiffchaff, 2 Goldcrest and 3 Firecrest along road heading west from the carpark entrance where the extensive marsh starts. On the sea, 4 Black-necked Grebes, 1 Slavonian Grebe (off Saltern Cove), 5 Great Crested Grebes, 2 Great Northern Divers, 41 Common Scoter and 1 ad w Mediterranean Gull with 1500+ Blackheaded Gulls and 40+ Common Gulls.

Must have just missed Jake!

Posted November 17th, 2012 at 5:04 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Broadsands

Broadsands 14:45-15:30

4 Black Necked Grebes close to the shore, 2 Great Creasted Grebes, 50+ Common Scoter and a Great Northern Diver right out beyond the buoys.

I didn't check for the tristis chiffchaff as there were lots of people racing remote control cars around the pools.

Posted November 17th, 2012 at 3:56 pm by Jacob Wood in Bird News

Wrafton

10 Wigeon, only 1 Gadwall visible and 4 Shoveler now.

In the reserve, a Chiffchaff, LOTS of Finches, and a Woodcock!

Posted November 17th, 2012 at 3:04 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

skern 07:45-08:30

3 pale bellied brent,164 brent,2f shoveller(uncommon record),2 bar tails,11 grey plover,fw med

Posted November 17th, 2012 at 10:36 am by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Friday 16th November 2012

Wembury

Ford Park Cemetary very quiet this morning so Russ and I nipped over to Wembury to see what we could poach there.

At least one Firecrest around the Pines, plus a Woodcock kicked out of the undergrowth. Five adult Med Gulls were on the beach and a female R.B.Merg was on the sea. Not a bad couple of hours.

Posted November 16th, 2012 at 6:59 pm in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

At lunchtime a peregrine had a wigeon


Posted November 16th, 2012 at 3:00 pm by Phil Holyday in Bird News

Kingsbridge Estuary - North

On a falling tide:

7 great-crested grebe, 8 brent geese, 40 shelduck, 135 wigeon, 5 pintail, female goldeneye, 11 red-breasted merganser, 83 oystercatcher, 2 grey plover, 52 golden plover, 3 black-tailed godwit on scrape, 5 bar-tailed godwit, 8 snipe, 135 curlew, 42 redshank, greenshank and singing cirl bunting.

Stacks of blackbirds around West Charleton marsh.

Posted November 16th, 2012 at 2:06 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Plover heanton Court

Large flock or Golden Plover? at heanton Court at 1200 today.

Not 100% sure if Golden Plover only had my small bins with me and the light is very gloomy today. 500 or 600 i would estimate.

Posted November 16th, 2012 at 1:33 pm by Andy Leat in Bird News

Berry Hd and Broadsands

Much quieter at Berry Hd this morning but still some overhead movement of thrushes and finches: 184 Redwing, 11 Fieldfare, 10 Brambling, 167 Chaffinches, 1 Golden Plover, 1 Little Egret, 22 Goldfinch, 8 Skylark, 6 Meadow Pipits and 34 Starling.

Around the headland: 12 Goldcrest, 3 Chiffchaff and 1 Blackcap.

Broadsands: 1 possibly 2 tristis Chiffchaffs one calling, 1 Chiffchaff, 4 Siskins and 1500 Wood Pigeons in the stubble fields.

A rather pale 'eastern' possibly tristis Chiffchaff non calling - but responding to tristis song playback well with wing quivering. Note less warm buffy tones though around face, chest and flanks and extensive pale base to lower mandible.

EChiffBrdsnds161112ML EChiffBrdsnds161112ML2

Below: The calling - with a flat 'piii' call - tristis Chiffchaff (with the above bird), buffier around face and sides of chest and flanks, really black legs and very little pale base to lower mandible. Again reacted well with wing quivering and 'chip - chip' call to tristis song.  

TristisChiffBrdsnds161112ML TristisChiffBrdsnds161112ML2

Posted November 16th, 2012 at 12:21 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Swallows Flying The Wrong Way

At Exmouth seafront 0930hrs saw 2 swallows fly in from the sea heading North.

Brief visit to Ide/Longdown area this morning looking for Hawfinch.

Weather was very misty and unable to view tops of trees.None seen or heard but will re visit on Sunday morning when forecast is better.

Roy Adams

Hungarian Bird Tours

  

Posted November 16th, 2012 at 10:55 am by Roy Adams in Bird News

Waxwings Exeter

Mike Salter watched a small flock of 7 or 8 Waxwings flying around calling near the Exeter University campus, just across the road from The Imperial (New North Road) early afternoon on Wednesday 14th. He suspects they were feeding somewhere in the valley that runs parallel to Prince of Wales Road (Duryard Valley?).

Posted November 16th, 2012 at 9:02 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Ford Park Cemetery - Plymouth

No sign of the Lesser Whitethroat yesterday, but Barry Rankine saw and photographed this Woodcock in the north west corner at 08:30.

Woodcock
Woodcock

Woodcock
Woodcock

Posted November 16th, 2012 at 8:55 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Thursday 15th November 2012

Axe Estuary

Highlights on the Estuary - Two Green Sandpiper showed well at the Blackhole Marsh and again at Colyford Common. 200+ Lapwing dotted across the floodplain below Axe Road Bridge and hide with a nice group of 15+ Curlew in the scape at the common. Kingfisher showing well on the Estuary from Tower Hide and another at Colyford Common. Plenty of Gulls, duck and usual residents on view with no Meds seen.

An eight Snipe flypast at Blackhole as we arrived with a Sparrohawk over the cemetry late morning. 

A good few hours with plenty to see on a falling tide.

Posted November 15th, 2012 at 9:13 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Wrafton

Now 11 Wigeon on the pond with the 2 drake Gadwall and 3 female Shoveler.

Posted November 15th, 2012 at 5:10 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Slapton

The female Ring-necked Duck still present near the bridge this morning, also a single late Swallow over the village. Otherwise fairly quiet.

Posted November 15th, 2012 at 4:17 pm by David Cope in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

A female Hen Harrier was hunting just north of the fisherman’s carpark at about 8 o’clock this morning, then flew over the canal to the reeds and not seen again. A good number of Fieldfares and Redwings were in the fields opposite the Turf Hotel and on passage north east over the marsh. Also the Whooper Swan still with Mute Swans seen from the railway bridge.

Posted November 15th, 2012 at 2:04 pm by Paul Albrechtsen in Bird News

Berry Hd

An incredible passage of Redwing at Berry Head this morning it started at about 0730hrs in small groups heading NW, then picked up to flocks of a 1000 or more being joined by smaller flocks of Fieldfare, amongst the Chaffinches were good numbers of Brambling and even a flock of 10 or more heading low NE. most of the passage had died out by 0930hrs overhead migration counts as follows: Redwing 4600+, Fieldfare 270+, Chaffinch 237, Brambling 78 (and probably more!), Wood Pigeon 220, Stock Dove 3, Song Thrush 6, Meadow Pipit 17, Starling 48, Greenfinch 9, Goldfinch 12, Pied Wagtail 7.

Part of a Fieldfare flock                                                       Part of a Redwing  Flock

 

Around the headland 21 Goldcrest, 1 Chiffchaff, several Brambling feeding around the still leaved sycamore trees with Chaffinches and 2 redhead Goosander > south off the Head at 0815hrs.

 

 

Posted November 15th, 2012 at 12:26 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Wednesday 14th November 2012

Dart's Farm & Exminster Marshes

At least 2 or 3 Brambling in with very healthy numbers of greenfinch and chaffinch, also goldfinch. I only saw males, and they were best seen in the trees at the edge of the fishing lake car park, though they would occasionally fly down into the sunflowers and get lost among the greenfinches. One individual stayed put for a good 15 minutes at the top of a tree, showing well, even after everything else had flown away from the resident sparrowhawk. The flock never stayed still for long, so it's possible there were more bramblings hiding in there somewhere. Best to go when the sun isn't too high in the sky.

Also, Whooper Swan still showing well just off the railway bridge at Exminster Marshes. Had a quick walk up and down the lane, but not much about. 5 or 6 shovelers in close on the pond by the canal car park, with good numbers of wigeon and teal, and a fair few redwings in the trees.

Posted November 14th, 2012 at 7:45 pm by Alfie Pugh in Bird News

THURLESTONE BAY

Early morning on T'stone marsh- 3 Lapwing, 26 Teal, 4 Wigeon, 7 Shoveler, 2 Gadwall also 4 Reed Bunting on my feeders.

South Huish marsh held - 13 lapwing, 50 Teal,10 Wigeon, 1 Brent Goose., 35 Snipe and at least 1 Jack Snipe.

On the rocks - 10 Ringed Plover, 3 Turnstone

Offshore a Great N Diver close in on the sea and 2 db Brent Goose flew east.

Whilst ringing at South Milton Ley Bob B had 10 Chiffchaff ( 6 ringed ) and the first Siberian Chiffchaff for a couple of years

Posted November 14th, 2012 at 6:11 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Whooper swans

4 Whooper swans (2ad 2ju) seen from Isley marsh flying down the river Taw about midday.

Posted November 14th, 2012 at 3:57 pm in Bird News

Clennon Valley

Lunch time walk around the ponds: 6 Chiffchaff & 1 possibly 2 tristis Chiffchaffs (one calling the other silent), 16 Tufted Duck,1 Pochard, 4 Shoveler, 3 Teal, 3 Snipe, 3-4 Water Rail & 1 Siskin.

The Plymouth Lesser Whitethroat would be worth studying well....

Posted November 14th, 2012 at 3:50 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Velator

6 Wigeon and a Gadwall on Wrafton Pond, and in the reserve a Great Spotted Woodpecker and 2 Water Rails seen.

Posted November 14th, 2012 at 3:44 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Ford Park Cemetery, Plymouth

One Lesser Whitethroat in the North West corner of the cemetery chasing insects in the trees.

Seems very late.

Posted November 14th, 2012 at 1:56 pm by Laurie Allnatt in Bird News

Broadsands

The bay was quite choppy today so difficult to pick out seabirds but 2 Black-necked Grebes and 1 Great Crested Grebe offshore.

7 Cirl Buntings on seed in back of 2nd car park, also Firecrest in hedge along road about 100m W of entrance to main car park - same place as DN yesterday.

This possible Scandinavian (littoralis) Rock Pipit (well.. 'showing characteristics of'!) was on the pool just behind the beach with two petrosus type Rock Pipits, much whiter below, lacking the olive flanks and chest so streaks look finer and more distinct, white outer tail feathers, stronger supercilium - looking quite Water Pipit like.

possible Littoralis Rock Pipit Broadsands 14 Nov 12 ML possible Littoralis Rock Pipit Broadsands 14 Nov 12 ML2

British type Rock Pipit below:

petrosus Rock Pipit Broadsands 14 Nov 12 ML2  Petrosus Rock Pipit Broadsands 14 Nov 12 ML

 

Posted November 14th, 2012 at 11:26 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Tuesday 13th November 2012

Exe Estuary cruise

The first Stuart Lines bird cruise of the winter experienced good numbers of waterfowl around the estuary today. Totals included at least 12 Great Crested Grebes, Slavonian Grebe off Cockwood, plus poor views of 1/2 distant Slav/Black-necked in mid-estuary and later off Powderham, 30+ Shags, perhaps 1000 Brents, but very few juvs and 5 Pale-bellied adults in mid-estuary, 80-100 Pintail, perhaps 2000 Wigeon, 25+ Mergansers, 1 Long-tailed Duck (on the river at Topsham), c250 Avocets, 6 Greenshank, 1 Spotted Redshank (Powderham, as last winter), perhaps 1000 Black-tailed Godwits (Topsham), 1 Mediterranean Gull (Cockwood), c100 Common Gulls, 100+ Great Black-backs, 10 Lesser Black-backs and 2 Kingfishers.  Also 1 Harbour Seal, presumably the resident, off Lympstone.

Posted November 13th, 2012 at 10:52 pm by Dave Smallshire in Bird News

Woodcock at Venn Ottery

Woodcock  + 5 Snipe disturbed at Venn Ottery today. First Woodcock of the season for the Exmouth 4. 

Posted November 13th, 2012 at 9:33 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Black Redstart - Exmouth Marina

Male Black Redstart still at Exmouth Marina late afternoon. Showed well on balcony rails before going to roost.

Posted November 13th, 2012 at 8:43 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Dawlish Warren / Exminster Marshes / Darts Farm/ Exe Est

 Day out with Vic Alan D and Eric W  -target Bonaparte's Gull - despite 2 good searches no sign at all ,

offshore single Black and Red T Diver, 4 Common Scoter. In the estuary 2 Slavonian Grebe, 1 Red B Merganser .

Good views of the Whooper Swan just by the railway bridge near Exminster Marshes car park.

Next Stop Dart's Farm  - amongst the Finch flock at least 8 Brambling inc some nice males

Posted November 13th, 2012 at 6:25 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Broadsands

4 Black-necked Grebes and a single Great Crested, plus a flock of c.40 Common Scoters well offshore. Walking back, a Firecrest by the road about 100m up from car park entrance.

Posted November 13th, 2012 at 1:50 pm in Bird News

Soar

Echoing Pete Aley's comments, Soar autumn movements appear to be over. Highlights this morning just 126 skylarks, 110 carrion crows, 10 cirl buntings & 6 yellowhammers.

Posted November 13th, 2012 at 1:32 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Common Scoters - Downend

Now 53 Common Scoters at Downend - all females


Posted November 13th, 2012 at 11:36 am by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Starcross

Firecrest popped in the garden this morning......then popped off again.

Firecrest
Firecrest

Posted November 13th, 2012 at 10:25 am by Gery Hooper in Bird News

Monday 12th November 2012

Braunton

Wrafton pond had 9 Wigeon late this afternoon (7 drakes) so some change from yesterday, 2 drake Gadwall still present.

In the reserve a few Bullfinches (first for quite some time). As I left the reserve all the Lapwing, Starlings and noisy Gulls took off from the fields west of Velator harbour.

Posted November 12th, 2012 at 6:33 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Otter Estuary

A Spotted Redshank on the estuary this afternoon - only my second sighting here where it is a very scarce bird.

Posted November 12th, 2012 at 5:56 pm by Chris Townend in Bird News

Skern, 11/11/12

Unable to post yesterday.

2-4 pm

3 pale bellied Brent geese amongst 213, Only 6 juveniles.

Posted November 12th, 2012 at 5:13 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Torbay

Broadsands: 1 Red-throated Diver, 1 Great Northern Diver, 5 Black-necked Grebes, 2 Great Crested Grebes, 36 Common Scoter (as usual feeding just north of mussel farm buoys toward Brixham).

Preston: 1 Great Crested Grebe, 27 Turnstone.

Posted November 12th, 2012 at 3:06 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Exmouth

Two 'brownhead' Goosanders off Mudbank Lane, Exmouth at 1330hrs, drifting towards West Lodge. Also adult Mediterranean Gull off the railway line there.

Also, male Black Redstart on the roofs of the flats at Shelly Beach.

Posted November 12th, 2012 at 2:28 pm by Terry Smith in Bird News

Exminster and Brixham

To add to Exminster yesterday, the Whooper Swan present again with a group of  Mutes by end of fishermans car park road in the afternoon. Earlier a Short-eared Owl reported towards the motorway bridge but I could not relocate it. By the S bend in the lane, several Migrant Hawker dragonflies sunbathing.  

At Brixham this morning a first year Great Northern Diver off Shoalstone and another flew south.

Posted November 12th, 2012 at 12:31 pm in Bird News

Sunday 11th November 2012

Mandarins at Hembury Woods

About 50 Mandarins when I found them at 15:30 this afternoon. Some were flying/swimming upstream, so there could have been more earlier. Still best seen at the most upstream point of the island.


Posted November 11th, 2012 at 11:13 pm by Alfie Pugh in Bird News

Bramblings

Dart's Farm, Clyst St George 15:30

Mixed flock of 100+ Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Chaffinch and 10+ Brambling feeding on Sunflower seed heads opposite the fishing lake. Nice views but very nervous flock. Very good views but poor light for photo's. 

Posted November 11th, 2012 at 6:40 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Soar

Beautiful day - birding from just after first light with Steve Young. Only vis mig of any note was 750+ Wood Pigeons (west). Also double figures of Goldcrests and Cirl Buntings and Stock Doves, single Siskin, Reed Bunting, Fieldfare and Chiffchaff.

I going to have to accept that the the autumn is (almost?) over! 

By the way, the cafe at East Soar Farm is closed until 9th December but the log book is still accessible for any brave soul venturing out there....

Posted November 11th, 2012 at 6:21 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Velator Reserve

Shortish ringing session late this morning produced several more Greenfinches, many of which seemed just a bit bigger than usual (several males with wings over 90mm) - perhaps continental birds? Which reminds me I ringed a very fat Chaffinch in my garden a couple of days ago which weighed in at 27.9 grams, half a gram more than IPMR says is the highest weight!

Also saw a lovely RED ADMIRAL during one of the sunny spells.

Great Tit calling in my garden this morning - must be spring!!

Posted November 11th, 2012 at 5:52 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Nice day for being out & about

T'stone Marsh this am - 2 Lapwing, 5 Wigeon, 20 Teal, 7 Shoveler and a Water pipit .

On South Huish marsh - 25 Teal, 8 Wigeon, 1 Brent Goose ,1 `1st w Med Gull, 75 Snipe ( feeding ).

Offshore a F Eider and 3 Common Scoter

Bob B at S M Ley had - Woodcock, 30 Fieldfare, 10 Redwimng with a Black Redstart in the village.

 

Vic T found an ad male Hen Harrier at Soar

Posted November 11th, 2012 at 5:17 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Dawlish Warren

The Bonaparte's Gull sill showing exceptionally well this afternoon along the beach at Dawish Warren, close inshore between groynes 2 and 7, despite the numerous dog walkers, canoeists, speed boats etc

Posted November 11th, 2012 at 5:13 pm by Mark Bailey in Bird News

Exe estuary

The WeBS count today at 13.40, between Turf and Powderham Corner, produced a good selection of birds includng great-crested grebe (1), greenshank (1), avocets (3), brent geese (55), lapwing (31), grey plover (2) and hundreds of dunlin on Greenland Bank just prior to the start of the count.

At the Turf, in the entrance to the canal was an adult female long-tailed duck.

Posted November 11th, 2012 at 5:04 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Torbay

Did a Wildlife boat trip this morning around Torbay:-

Goodrington/Broadsands area, 1 Shelduck, 1 Goldeneye only 3 scoter and 4 Black-necked Grebe. Back of Broadsands beach a very large flock of wood pigeons in the trees.

Elberry to Brixham, 16 Herons, Buzzard. Purple sandpiper on the bunkering area Brixham Brakewater.

A few oystercatchers, shags and cormorants. Not much else about but a beautiful day, next trip Sunday 25th November, am.

Posted November 11th, 2012 at 4:50 pm by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News

Central Park, Plymouth

2 Firecrests and 10+ Goldcrests in the woods at Central Park.

Posted November 11th, 2012 at 3:27 pm by Laurie Allnatt in Bird News

Brixington, Exmouth

A large female Goshawk drifted northwards over Exmouth (Brixington Lane/Knappe Cross area) at 1350hrs, providing me with another 'house tick'.

Posted November 11th, 2012 at 2:51 pm by Terry Smith in Bird News

Kingsbridge Estuary

West Charleton Marsh / Bay, 11:50-13:15, rising tide.

3 Pintail, 7 Teal, Merlin ( fem.), Water Rail, 3 Grey Plover, 20 Fieldfare, 30 Redwing.

Posted November 11th, 2012 at 1:48 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Bradiford Reserve and R.Taw off Pottington.

09:00 - 10:30

Bradiford Res viewed from the gate:- Teal c40; Wigeon 6; Redshank 1; Snipe 1; Little Egret 1 and Redwing 9.

Following drainage work and undergrowth clearance by SWW? the road to the Pottington sewage works and the Water Rail ditch have been drastically cleared. The area has been opened up considerably. 2 Goldcrests easily found. A young female falconer uses the Parker Hannafin car park and grassed areas to fly 3 Harris Hawks.

R.Taw foreshore. Apart from Redshank, Oystercatchers etc, 2 Common Sandpipers; 17 Dunlin and 1 blue ringed Herring Gull which was too far away to read.

Scrub area next to Ashford sewage works:- 11 Fieldfares and 5 Redwings.

Posted November 11th, 2012 at 1:14 pm by Maurice Clements in Bird News

Berry Hd and Broadsands

Berry Hd 0720-0830: Overhead; 1800 Wood Pigeons > N, 7 Stock Dove, 3 Brambling, 23 Goldfinch, 63 Chaffinch, 9 Greenfinch, 8 Meadow Pipits, 2 Pied Wagtail and 11 Redwing.

Around headland: 1 Water Rail, 1 Chiffchaff, 4 Goldcrest.

Wood Pigeons Berry Hd 11 Nov 2012

Wood Pigeons Berry Head - can you pick out a Stock Dove?

Broadsands: 5 Black-necked Grebes, 13 Common Scoter, 3 Great Crested Grebes, 1 Goldeneye (Goodrington Beach direction) with a Shelduck. 1 Chiffchaff,3 Goldcrests, 4 Cirl Buntings, 5 Skylark and a flock of 1500+ Wood pigeons

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

Saturday 10th November 2012

Thurs 8th Hembury

A photo by Tom Wallis taken on Thursday 8th on R Dart, nr Hembury showing some of the roosting Mandarin Ducks.

Mandarin Ducks Tom Wallis, R Dart, Dartmoor 8.11.2012

Posted November 10th, 2012 at 10:04 pm in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

from the hide 12:50 till 14:45

1 spotted redshank, 1 golden plover, 173+ avocet, 93+ bar tailed godwits, 5 greenshanks, 8+ snipe, 600+ black tailed godwits, 4 Pochards, 5+ tufted duck, 70+ Brent geese over towards darts farm, sparrowhawk, kestrel, 3+ buzzards, 2 jay, 4 knot

earlier from viewing platform and goat walk 60+ grey plover, 1500+ dunlin ( goat walk) 500+ dunlin ( viewing platform) 4+ jay, 20+ redwing

goat walk 15:00 till 16:20

eventualy after an hour found the long tailed duck as it flew into the middle of the estuary between goat walk and turf 

Posted November 10th, 2012 at 8:12 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Dawlish Warren

Day trip to the Warren today with Jake Wood. Bonaparte's Gull showing well, Red Throated Diver and some lucky views of this cracking male Bearded Tit on the main pond. Thanks to Lee and Dave for stamping my passport when we arrived on site!

s

Posted November 10th, 2012 at 6:33 pm by Bill Macdonald in Bird News

Cold East Cross, north east of Buckland-in-the-Moor

Walking north from Cold East Cross to Pill Tor 4pm to 4.45pm- 62 golden plover circling high then heading south and 1 short-eared owl quartering.

Posted November 10th, 2012 at 5:34 pm by Tim & Aishlyn Youngs in Bird News

Wembury

Quite lively just after first light with a nice mix of birds around the point including - 2 Firecrests (together), 13 Goldcrests, and single Blackcap, Chiffchaff and Brambling. Overhead (all west) - 40+ Chaffinches, 4 Bullfinches, and 2 Siskins.

The beach held c40 Rock Pipits and a Sparrowhawk.

Posted November 10th, 2012 at 2:07 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Wrafton pond

Don't know where they keep coming from but now 12 WIgeon on the pond (6 Drakes) and 2 drake Gadwall.

Posted November 10th, 2012 at 1:33 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Start Point

07:00-09:00. Very little vis mig, just 10 Meadow Pipit, 2 alba Wagtails, 90 Chaffinch, 50 Goldfinch, 6 Brambling, 3 Bullfinch abd 2 Linnets. 4 Fieldfares in the hedge by the car park on arrival, a small flock of 5 Common Scoter just offshore below the car park and a Black Redstart at the light.

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

Friday 9th November 2012

Home Farm

0800-0845

Whooper swans still present at this time.

Posted November 9th, 2012 at 4:08 pm by Dawn Barford in Bird News

Dawlish Warren

The Bonaparte's Gull performed very well this morning just behind the Boathouse Pub. Also 1 Sandwich Tern and 2+ Med Gulls


Posted November 9th, 2012 at 4:07 pm by Chris Townend in Bird News

Dawlish Warren

Bonaparte's Gull still along sea wall and on first few groynes from 8.00 am onwards. Also Red-throated Diver and adult Sandwich Tern. 

Posted November 9th, 2012 at 3:57 pm by Steve Cox in Bird News

Broadsands

1 Great Northern Diver, 2 Black-necked Grebes, 2 Great Crested Grebes, 34 Common Scoter. 4 Cirl Buntings on seed in 2nd car park. 

Grt Nrthn Diver Broadsands 9 Nov 2012

photo: 1st winter Great Northern Diver, Broadsands Bay.

 

Posted November 9th, 2012 at 3:10 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Kingsbridge Estuary at West Charleton

On a mid-morning rising tide highlights were 2 female scaup and  5 red-breasted merganser.

Also: 171 wigeon, 3 pintail, 160 curlew, 13 bar-tailed godwit and 30 redwing.

Posted November 9th, 2012 at 2:32 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Clennon Valley

A visit to the ponds first thing this morning produced of interest: 1 Mandarin drake, 3 Shoveler, 11 Tufted Duck, 3 Snipe, 4 Water Rail, 1 Little Egret, 1 Little Grebe, 4 Chiffchaff, 7 Goldcrest, 1 Firecrest, 1 Blackcap, 8 Redwing and a fly over Brambling.

Posted November 9th, 2012 at 11:12 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Thursday 8th November 2012

nr. Harberton

Continuing the Woodpigeon theme, i was driving along a back road less than a mile northwest of Harberton ( nr. Totnes ) late morning ( Grid Ref SX 770598 ) when a great swarm of pigeons took off from a stubble field by the road. Could not stop but there must have been c2500 flying around. A few hundred Starlings as well.

Posted November 8th, 2012 at 7:34 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Wood pigeon migration over Torbay

The text below is from Mark Thomas RSPB...

 

The night of Monday 5th November saw me and another RSPB Investigations colleague staying at the Premiere Inn at Torquay ahead of the court case involving the egg collectors and nest disturbers Betteridge and Crang the following day.

 

Dawn broke with clear blue skies and ideal conditions for Wood Pigeon migration, I was aware that Wood Pigeons had been moving in the last few days over Bedfordshire from my vismig watching. But I had no real idea if WP’s moved this far West but I had my bins and at 0715hr walked to the seafront to get some air.

 

Looking NE I immediately picked up a group of 700 WP’s high over the east of the bay and coming directly over my position., Looking in the general direction that these birds were heading I latched on to another group of about 800 birds that must have passed over a few minutes before and were now over Brixham in a massive wave. Another massive ball of birds suddenly swung in from the NE and before long I was on 5000. Looking due North I also saw several groups every 50 seconds heading high SW over the land.

 

This continued for well over 30 minutes, before the birds coming overhead dried up. Looking south, it soon became apparent that the passage had now moved further to the south and that the birds were now cutting the bay directly E to W. This allowed a very good ‘side on’ view of the movement. Around this time I was joined by Josh Marshall and my colleague Guy Shorrock. Thousands of birds were streaming past with flocks ahead, mid distance and almost out of visual range. Looking to the west the scene was colossal, as the angle of view meant that the flocks all appeared to merge in to one mass migration, like beast on the plains!

 

Exact counting was impossible but at one point I could see 12 flocks of 500 birds alone ! At 0815hrs I had to drag myself away but had counted just over 40000 individuals. Twenty minutes later I was back dressed for court and immediately noticed that the passage appeared to have dried up. It was one of the most amazing and unexpected bird events I have ever seen !

 

Mark Thomas

 

 

Posted November 8th, 2012 at 5:24 pm by Josh Marshall in Bird News

Hembury Woods.

Mandarin Duck. 8th November. 80 plus above Island. Best toward late afternoon.

Also two Dipper.

Posted November 8th, 2012 at 5:18 pm by David Turrell in Bird News

Torbay

Preston Sands: 1 Black-necked Grebe

Broadsands: 2 Black-necked Grebes, 2 Great Crested Grebes, 1 Red-throated Diver, 24 Common Scoter (mostly out north of the mussel farm buoys).

Black-necked Grebe, Broadsands 8 Nov 12 ML

I have started putting the RSPB seed down for the Cirl Buntings in the 2nd car park at Broadsands (there are more 'wintering' beach huts than normal but it may restrict dog interference to the feeding area). To date I have counted 6 Cirl Buntings (2 males and 4 females) also 1 Brambling with the Chaffinches there. Just 1 Chiffchaff around the marsh at present and 5 Siskin with the Goldfinches.

Posted November 8th, 2012 at 3:24 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Mandarins Hembury Woods

Hembury Woods yesterday, 45+ Mandarin. Stunning!

Posted November 8th, 2012 at 8:28 am by David Turrell in Bird News

Wednesday 7th November 2012

Exminster marsh

Watched along station road from 14:35 till 16:45

A female Merlin showed well twice and nearly caught a meadow pipit, a peregrine put up the wigeon on the scrapes but failed to catch anything. At least 4 water rail with 2 by the bridge over the railway line, 17+ redwing and 2 Fieldfares, a large group of 30+  long tailed tits included 5+ goldcrests, also 1 buzzard and a sparrowhawk, and at least 2000+ starlings.

Posted November 7th, 2012 at 7:16 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Wrafton Pond

7 Wigeon (3 drakes) and 2 Gadwall, both drakes late afternoon.

Posted November 7th, 2012 at 7:05 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Yelland - Home Farm Marsh

9:30 - 11:15

Isley Marsh (from Tarka Trail) 6 Spoonbill

Tarka Trail : No sign of any Waxwing but 60+ Fieldfare and several Redwing.

Home Farm Marsh : On the main pond Still 4 Whooper Swans (2 adults + 2 juveniles), 6 Shovelers also lots more common stuff.

All images Astroscoped from 500 feet

Image astroscoped from 500 feet

Image astroscoped from 500 feet

Image astroscoped from 500 feet




Posted November 7th, 2012 at 3:23 pm in Bird News

Egg collecting/disturbance convictions

Marcus Betteridge and Seymour Crang appeared at Newton Abbot Magistrates court yesterday and pleaded guilty to the following

Betteridge - Intentional disturbance of a schedule 1 species (Dartford Warbler)

Crang - Possession of wild bird eggs (15)

Originally the Crown Prosecution service (CPS)  had agreed to charge Betteridge with a further 4 counts of disturbance of schedule 1, these included Peregrine Falcon and Woodlark. However CPS agreed to a plea from Betteridge and the other 4 were dropped! 2 years worth of work went into this from myself and RSPB investigations, disappointed with them being dropped to say the least...

The diaries stretched back a number of years. We were only able to deal with offences that stretched back 2 years from the date of finding the diaries as the offences mentioned have what is called a time limit upon them. This prevented us from  investigating any entries dated later than this.

I was pleased that the court did not except the basis of Crangs plea. This being that he had held to to eggs from a previous raid at a property in 1999. We provided evidence to the contrary.

Although other charges were dropped I was pleased with the sentence handed down from the Magistrates. Both were fined £1,250 for the separate charges.

I would like to thank the RSPB investigation team for all their incredible work in this case, they are worth the RSPB subscription on their own!

I will over the next few days place a full item on my blog with further background info on the case.

This whole incident should emphasise the caution needed with posting sighting of schedule 1 birds on this blog...

Here is a national newspaper story in relation to the court case

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2228904/Obsessional-thieves-guilty-stealing-hundreds-birds-eggs-year-undercover-operation.html

And the Westcountry News peice on the case, with footage of Betteridge and Crang

http://vimeo.com/52947306

 

 

 

Posted November 7th, 2012 at 8:48 am by Josh Marshall in Bird News

Dark-breasted Barn Owl on a boat!

Technically not in Devon - but interesting nevertheless!

This apparent guttata Dark-breasted Barn Owl spent 12 hours resting on a trawler 38 miles south of Plymouth on 26th October. It was seen and photographed by Fred Bartlett. Thanks must go to Kevin Hale for getting the news and photo to me.

I wonder where it is now?

Dark-breasted Barn Owl
Dark-breasted Barn Owl

Posted November 7th, 2012 at 8:28 am by Steve Waite in Bird News

Tuesday 6th November 2012

Birds at work

over the Devon hotel at matford this morning between 06:45 and 08:00 all sw 2000+ wood pigeon also 8 stock dove, one group of 80+ skylark, 2 mistle thrush, several small groups of redwing, 3 fieldfares.

rest of day in meeting in lee mills industrial estate on drive back to Exeter hen harrier over A38 at 16:20ish shortly before the buckfastleigh turn off heading south 

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 8:06 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Egg collecting/disturbance court case

I will place a full update to this court case on my blog and link to here later but currently busy at work.. Here is a link to the Westcountry News item filmed today 

http://vimeo.com/52947306

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 7:58 pm by Josh Marshall in Bird News

Osprey

Saw Osprey going downstream over River Plym near Ditsworthy Warren/Giants Basin on Sunday 4 November about 2pm - no photo but watched it for a good 15 minutes

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 6:24 pm by John & Annabelle Strickland in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

With clear skies and calm conditions the Wood Pigeon passage had started by 07.15- most of the activity between 07.30- 08.00 although some until 08.15 . My total logged was 27,000 all flying in a SE direction . Other species flying over T'stne Marsh - 28 Chaffinch, 3 Fieldfare, 1 Mistle Thrush, 1 Jay, 2 Goldfinch with 2 Black Redstart on the houses .

Big reduction in Teal this morning , only 20 on T'stone Marsh and 16 on South Huish ,9 Lapwing , 3 Snipe 10 Wigeon ( a further 17 flew over) and 6 Shoveler were seen

On the sea  a Great Crested Grebe, . Sunny and calm conditions in the Copse produced 5 Chiffchaff and 4 Goldcrest.

Starling roost tonight also well down- 100,000 max came in between 16.10 and 16.40

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 6:22 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Whooper Swans - Home Farm Marsh

Maurice - Thanks for the message. Arrived this afternoon & managed to digiscope the Whoopers you spotted this morning.

Unfortunately, the Waxwings had moved on so I sent out the search party while I got on with the digiscoping!




Posted November 6th, 2012 at 6:14 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Soar

A later start than usual missed out on the huge woodpigeon passage but did log 760 W plus 17 stock doves.

O/wise quiet just 150 skylarks on stubbles, 23 blackbirds, 20 fieldfares W, 4 goldcrests, 320 jackdaws & 120 carrion crows.

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 4:53 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Dawlish Warren

Interesting to read about the woodpigeons. Just to add to the picture, 23,500 woodpigeons SW between 07.05 and 11.30 hrs. Most were out over the sea, with few over the Warren or estuary.  Didn't count stock's consistently due to distance of most flocks but minimum 200 from close flocks. Otherwise vis mig was poor with just a trickle of finches and skylarks. Interesting that under the clear weather conditions this morning woodpigeons obviously cut across Lyme Bay and the line of the birds I watched would have took them toward Teignmouth area. However, judging by the Torquay count, I suspect many more were further out over the bay, beyond detectable range from Dawlish, .  

Bonaparte's gull was again feeding offshore and at least 2 red-throated diver. 8 common scoter flew south.

 

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 4:46 pm in Bird News

Long-tailed Duck Exe Estuary

This Long-tailed Duck was seen yesterday on the River Clyst from the platform at Topsham by Ian Waite and Rob Johnson. It was photographed by Lee Summersby.

Long-tailed Duck
Long-tailed Duck

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 3:55 pm by Steve Waite in Bird News

Velator Reserve

Ringing this morning was again productive - if you like Greenfinches! (39 ringed) Also: 6 Blackbirds, 2 Song Thrush, 3 Redwings, a Goldfinch, a Goldcrest and a smart male Siskin.

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 1:35 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Berry Hd

Oddly the Wood Pigeon movement missed Berry Hd altogether - after a couple of calls from Josh I scanned back toward Paignton and could see big flocks of Wood Pigeon moving SW - probably right over my house!

Overhead at Berry Hd this morning: 17 Brambling, 9 Siskin, 1 Redpoll sp, 2 Crossbill, 13 Bullfinch, 96 Chaffinch, 9 Greenfinch, 24 Goldfinch, 11 Linnet, 116 Starling, 27 Redwing, 3 Fieldfare, 7 Song Thrush, 1 Mistle Thrush, 2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers, 8 Skylark, 7 alba Wagtails and 22 Meadow Pipits.

Around the Headland: 11 Goldcrest, 4 Chiffchaff, 3 Blackcap, 1 Stonechat still 3 Water Rail calling from scrub and good numbers of Blackbirds. 

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 11:14 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Home farm Marsh and Isley Marsh areas

0755 - 09:30

Viewing from Tarka Trail.

Main pond on Home Farm Marsh - 4 WHOOPER SWANS ( 2 adults, 2 juvs. MR. SS493330.) Plenty of Teal, Wigeon and Curlew.

Hawthorn bushes south of the trail, between old power stn level crossing and West Yelland Farm. (MR SS487324) A small stream flows under the trail from field into Isley Marsh. 7 WAXWINGS plus 13 Fieldfares, 6 Redwings and a few Common Thrushes.

Isley Marsh - 4 Spoonbills, 3 Greenshank and 14 Little Egrets plus a few Crows mobbing a Buzzard.

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 10:23 am by Maurice Clements in Bird News

Exmouth

Orcombe Point - 0700 - 0800 - huge woodpigeon movement over Orcombe this morning. In first 20 minutes of light 1000+ in small flocks (c350 the highest) and then as the sun got higher the flock sizes increased to the point that I gave up trying to count but certainly tens of thousands before I had to leave at 0800. Looking east along the coast wave after wave of large flocks were all moving west, stretching right along the horizon from and well out to sea - an incredible sight! Also 4+ brambling, 2 mistle thrush, a couple reed buntings and smaller number of finches and thrushes.

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 9:33 am by Matt Knott in Bird News

Torquay Seafront

Got a call from Mark Thomas from the RSPB today whilst at work who was witnessing some epic Woodpigeon movement.

By 0815hrs when I had to leave Mark had counted 40,000+.

An incredible sight! Never seen anything like that, clouds of them crossing west across the bay  coming in north from Torquay.

Also present were a couple of Brent Geese close to shore

Posted November 6th, 2012 at 8:30 am by Josh Marshall in Bird News

Monday 5th November 2012

Thurlestone Bay

Once the cloud cover cleared at 08.15 the Wood Pigeon started moving SE- by 08.45 8,000 with a further 2,000 by 09.30.

Over the marsh by 9.00 2 Brambling, 7 Chaffinch, 1 Swallow, on the Marsh 12 Lapwing, 20 Teal, 6 Shoveler, 1 Little Grebe, 1 Snipe, 1 Brent Goose.

On South Milton Ley - Bob b had- 8 Redwing, 3 Fieldfare,4 Water Rail, 5 Siskin, 3 Chiffchaff .

From 09.30 a 2.5 hr viz mig /sea watch from the cafe was good - 70 Chaffinch., 12 Goldfinch, 1 Yellowhammer, 10 Greenfinch, 2 Black Redstart, 1 Swallow, 1 Great N Diver, 3 Brent Goose, 2 Med Gull, 6 Kittiwake, 1 Razorbill, 2 Turnstone, 1 Knot.

This afternoon 3 more Black Redstart around the houses.

Late news yesterday of a Short Eared Owl over the Golf Course at 12.00

Posted November 5th, 2012 at 8:26 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

nr. West Charleton

Driving through the back lanes near Duncombe Cross, just north of West Charleton at dusk and surprised to put up a Short-eared Owl from the side of the road.

Posted November 5th, 2012 at 7:15 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Slapton Ley

Finally caught up with the female ring-necked duck in the NW corner.

Also: 28 gadwall, 26 pochard, 177 tufted duck, 4 great crested grebe, 85 great-black-backed gull & 70 lesser black-backed gull. A few gannets offshore & brent goose north.

Posted November 5th, 2012 at 4:40 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Denbury White rhea

The white rhea comes from a smallholding near to West Ogwell.  The gate to the smallholding is at 815702, and I'm sure the smallholders will be happy to know where their rhea is.  I don't know if anyone is resident there and I don't have a contact telephone no. for them.  Hope this is useful.

Posted November 5th, 2012 at 4:33 pm by dan lupton in Bird News

Clennon Valley

A lunchtime visit produced: 1 Cetti's Warbler still present middle pond, calling today - no song also 7 Chiffchaffs mostly in the sycamores which are still in leaf - obviously not ready just yet for the willow trees, 5 Goldcrest, 1 Lesser Redpoll, 2 Siskins, 4 Shoveler, 11 Tufted Duck, 3 Water Rail (calling only)  and one Little Egret.   

Posted November 5th, 2012 at 3:49 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Kingsbridge Estuary

Geese Quarries - Charleton Marsh, 12:15-14:45, falling tide.

10 Brent Geese, 2 Egyptian Geese ( stubble field nr. Creekside ), 8 Pintail ( marsh ), 12 Red-breasted Merganser, 4 Great Crested Grebe, 7 Little Grebe, Greenshank, Grey Plover, 72 Golden Plover ( mudflats Charleton Bay ), Common Sandpiper, 11 Bar-tailed Godwit, 85 Common Gull ( Charleton Bay ), Rock Pipit and Brambling.

 

Posted November 5th, 2012 at 3:46 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

CRANBROOK (New town) Exeter.

Thought I would claim a doubtful FIRST for myself with the first ever bird survey of the new town of Cranbrook..Map ref SY002950 in Tetrad SY09C.  (BTO Bird Atlas 2007-11Survey lists 29 species recorded for this area in winter).

Concentrated on the western end and parked at the visiter centre. Spent two hours keeping mainly to the new road system before venturing on to areas under development (avoided being stopped by contractors by wearing mandatory high vis jacket).

Was pleased to count a total of 20 species including Redwing, Bullfinch, Linnet (40), Stonechat (1), Kestrel (1). Buzzard (1). Most other common species present . I was not surprised to find that there were no birds in the construction areas (other than Pied Wags) and the birds I did find were all in old hedgerows and untouched scrub.  These areas should provide corridoors for wildlife into the new town as long as they remain untouched.  There was a particularly good area behing South Whimple Farm which contained finches and the Chat.  Towards the railwayline a new wetland area has been created to contain a stream but no birds yet.

Posted November 5th, 2012 at 2:20 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Skern.

08:00 - 09:00

145 Dark-bellied Brent Goose; 3 Pale-bellied Brent Goose; 129 Wigeon; 46 Shelduck; 3 Pintail (1 male,

2 female); 18 Grey Plover; 2 Knot; 17 Dunlin; 4 Little Egret; 4 Bar-tailed Godwit; c250 Oystercatcher;

48 Curlew; 53 Redshank and 47 Lapwing.

Posted November 5th, 2012 at 10:21 am by Maurice Clements in Bird News

Sunday 4th November 2012

Exe Starlings

Early days yet, but numbers of starlings are steadily building over the Exe. There seem to be several murmuration sites (River Exe, Cullompton, River Otter etc) that they choose between over the course of a winter, so it's nice to see them here again.

I've no idea how you count so many birds, but these were seen over Topsham, towards the M5 this evening.

One of the larger groups over Exminster
One of the larger groups over Exminster

Starling group in the failing light
Starling group in the failing light

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 9:42 pm by Sarah Butcher in Bird News

Ernsettle

The Lesser 'legs eventually showed well at c.12.30 surrounded by Redhanks and a few Greenshanks plus a Curlew or two and a Whimbrel.Redhank and Lesser Yellowlegs

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 9:12 pm by Steve Young in Bird News

Plymouth

Ford Park Cemetery ; at least three Black Redstarts around the gravestones this afternoon, possibly a fourth bird seen

Plenty of Redwing all over the cemetery hard to say how many but one flock in flight held around one hundred birds. I would imagine there were two hundred if not more here.

Mistle Thrush numbers also difficult to estimate but thirty or forty wouldn't be too far off the mark.

Two Ravens over and a dozen or so Meadow Pipits were also here.

R.McCarthy.

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 7:56 pm in Bird News

brixham

 Hi, in my small garden in Brixham on Saturday I had 8 robins all together which I thought  interesting

but today (sunday) i came back from a walk this morning around Berry Head with Mike Langman to find 9

robins again in my garden, they only stay for a few minutes and flew off all together into the next gardens and beyond. Any idea what is going on? Also early this morning while washing up!! I had a swallow flying low going SE.  

I'm doing another boat trip in Torbay having a look what is about this sunday at 08.30, if interested give us a call on 01803 856428.

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 7:22 pm by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News

Late swallow in Starcross

Had a Swallow fly over the garden earlier today, not the first time I've seen a lingerer here around this time of the year .

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 6:50 pm by Gerry Hooper in Bird News

soar

Post Scilly walk from mid morning Black Redstart at Middle Soar and c900 Wood Pigeon, plus just 3 Goldcrests.  A Common Sandpiper and 2 Lapwings at Averton Gifford on the way home.

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 6:43 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Nr. Buckland in the Moor

Ring tail hen harrier seen at 3pm, quartering near Cold East Cross, NE of Buckland in the Moor.

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 5:53 pm by Tim & Aishlyn Youngs in Bird News

Brixham Breakwater

Brixham breakwater 13:00-13:50.

9 purple sandpipers and 4 turnstones on the breakwater.

There was a very close Little Auk just off the beach at the base of the breakwater at 13:45 that then flew off towards Berry Head at around 13:50.

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 3:46 pm by Jacob Wood in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 09:10 till 13:35

a good morning from the hide with a 1st winter Scaup showing well , 167 avocet, 62+ bar tailed godwit, good numbers of black tailed godwit and wigeon,  13+ shovelers, 1 snipe, kestrel, 40+ Brent geese over towards darts farm, 4 tufted duck, 20+ Fieldfare, 9 greylag geese.

from viewing platform another 17+ Fieldfares, lots of redwings hard to count as movement in all directions, 3 Mistle thrush, 2 song thrush, at least 6 jay, 9+ grey plover, great spotted woodpecker.

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 3:41 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Gibbet Hill - Dartmoor

Snow bunting still present on west side of Gibbet Hill this morning for third day.Snow Bunting Gibbet Hill 4.11.12 Charlie Elder

(Charlie Elder)

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 2:16 pm in Bird News

Wembury

0645-0900 a few bits and bobs. Lots of Redwing calling in the darkness this morning from the bushes as well as a single Brambling that was seen later well. Turned into a lovely morning, made better by a female Black Red at the point on the fence of the Radar field.

No sign of what looked like a small, short black-billed gull that was seen very briefly yesterday.

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 2:09 pm in Bird News

Berry Hd

A bit of overhead movement this morning: 1 Wood Lark, 2 Skylark, 3 Bullfinch, 34 Chaffinch, 6 Brambling, 12 Goldfinch, 4 Meadow Pipits, 40+ Wood Pigeon.

Around the Headland: 2 Ring Ouzels still present below cafe in Northern Fort, 13 Goldcrest, 2 Firecrest, 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap, 8 Redwing, 38 Blackbirds, 4 Coal Tits 1 Stonechat - but most suprising were 4-5 Water Rail calling from the scrubby area west of the road from the wardens bungalow to Berry Head Hotel, it is very damp at the moment but there has obviously been a bit of an influx! I have heard the odd one from the same area before but not for 6-7 years. 

ML, NS,JL

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 12:29 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Slapton Ley

Made a brief detour to Slapton Ley on the way home from Start Point.Had a look at Ireland Bay from the midway car park and sawthe female Ring-necked Duck, 113 Tufted Duck, 14 Pochard and 7 Little Grebes. Not much on the sea except for a Great Northern Diver.

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 12:06 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

R.Taw - Pottington to Ashford.

09:45

1 female Red-breasted Merganser and 3 Sanderling on the foreshore.

1 Green Sandpiper in the ditch beside sewage works.

Just 1 Redwing in hawthorn bushes but lots of Blackbirds.

Bradiford Reserve was really inundated with the high tide this morning.

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 12:05 pm by Maurice Clements in Bird News

Start Point

06:30-09:45. Talk about changeable weather. Arrived to a fresh WSW wind and rain. Rain ceased by 07:00, then wind dropped off and it became very clear and bright, if cold. Grey skies and rain again when i left.

Vis mig from the car park from 07:10-09:00, all birds south-southeast ; 8 Meadow Pipit, 5 alba Wagtails, 290 Chaffinch, 170 Goldfinch, 13 Brambling, 14 Siskin, 3 Lesser Redpoll, 5 Bullfinch, 8 Greenfinch and a Reed Bunting. 2300 Woodpigeons in distance flying southwest Slapton-Lannacombe / Prawle.

First thing around the farm were 21 Redwings, 4 Fieldfares and a Mistle Thrush. Later on Blackcap, Goldcrest and Firecrest. Otherwise c 800 Starlings in the top fields, a Chiffchaff by the car park and a late House Martin flying around.

 

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 12:03 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Wrafton Pond

Now 2 drake Gadwall and five Wigeon including a smart drake.

Nearby in velator reserve lots of Greenfinch and an influx of Blackbirds in the last couple of days.

Posted November 4th, 2012 at 11:09 am by Jon Turner in Bird News

Saturday 3rd November 2012

Brambling

Adult male brambling seen twice in garden today, 12 noon and 1300 hrs.

Also 500 jackdaws,dusk, Atlantic Village, Bideford.

Posted November 3rd, 2012 at 8:02 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Soar and Slapton Ley

07.30 - 14.00 East Soar to south side of Soar Mill Cove: Fresh W. wind started clear at dawn, cloud later with heavy showers: 1 Common Snipe 1 high SW, 600-1000 Woodpigeon, 1 Redwing in Starehole, 4 Chiffchaff, 500+ Starling on airfield, 1 w. male Brambling in stubble above copse with c.10 Yellowhammers, up to 10 Cirls and c.15 Chaffinches, 1 male Crossbill high W. over the copse, 1 Reed Bunting in stubble above copse.

Slapton Ley from 15.00 - 16.15 produced the Ring-necked Duck at the back of Ireland Bay with Pochard, Goadwal, Tufties and a pair of Wigeon. 

Posted November 3rd, 2012 at 6:18 pm by Steve Young in Bird News

Erme Estuary

Vic Tucker rang this evening -asked me to report 360+ Wigeon

Posted November 3rd, 2012 at 5:36 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Thurlestone Marsh

After a stormy night the skies cleared with a sunny morning- Viz mig over my house in 1 hour from 07.30-

10,000 Wood Pigeon ( flying SE in 30 mins inc one flock of 6,000 )   50 Fieldfare, 25 Chaffinch, 25 Stock Dove, 3 Goldfinch, 1 Reed Bunting  3 Jay

Also on the marsh - 4 Little Egret, 40 Teal, 6 Wigeon, 12 Lapwing, Snipe. Brent Goose

Female Black Redstart in the garden.

Starling roost tonight 16.30-16.50 est at 210, 000

Posted November 3rd, 2012 at 5:34 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

From the hide 07:45 till 09:45

On the walk down to the hide 11+ mistle thrush, 54+ redwing,  14+ blackbirds, 4 goldcrest, nuthatch, great spotted woodpecker, a late house martin was good 

from the hide 167 avocet, 80+ dunlin,  2 bar tailed godwits ,  500+ black tailed godwits, 3 pochard, 4 tufted duck, 2 Cetti's warblers , 5+ shoveler

viewing platform area from 09:50 till 11:40

5+ jay, 1 Fieldfare, 25+ meadow pipit, 6 little egret, 1+ kingfisher, 26+ grey plover and 52+ bar tailed godwit and 200+ dunlin. 

Posted November 3rd, 2012 at 4:07 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Common Scoters - Downend

pic


Posted November 3rd, 2012 at 3:11 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Common Scoters - Downend

Now 32 Common Scoters (all females) at Downend. No sign

of the female Surf Scoter for the past 3 days.

Atlantic Grey Seal with a large Conger eel (over a metre long)

in it's jaws being mobbed by Herring Gulls.

No sign of any Scoters at Baggy but 1 Great Northern Diver still in summer plumage - possibly the same one that was at Downend previously.

Posted November 3rd, 2012 at 3:01 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Kingsbridge Estuary

At high tide this morning a Slavonian Grebe in Charleton Bay out from the bird hide.

Posted November 3rd, 2012 at 11:08 am by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh 09:00 to 12:00

47 species! Highlights were 190+ Avocet, 600+ Black Tailed Godwit, 30+ Bar Tailed Godwit, 5 Dunlin, 2 Snipe, 12 Brent overfly, 1 late House Martin and a Peregrine.

Posted November 3rd, 2012 at 12:07 am by Simon Bates in Bird News

Friday 2nd November 2012

Bowling Green Marsh 09:00 to 12:00

47 species! Highlights were 190+ Avocet, 600+ Black Tailed Godwit, 30+ Bar Tailed Godwit, 5 Dunlin, 2 Snipe, 12 Brent overfly, 1 late House Martin and a Peregrine.

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 7:56 pm by Simon Bates in Bird News

Strangest bird report yet...?

Jon Avon phoned earlier in the week with a description of a very strange 4ft high white bird running around a field in Denbury, Luckily Jon had other witness's nearby to confirm he was in a fit state of mind  - I like Jon was completely stumped by the bird (with thoughts of Bustards and Crane running through our heads) and asked if Jon could get a photo - he managed this one photo before the bird disappeared.

Rheqa Dendury Oct 2012

A photo does speak a thousand words to any birdwatcher trying to identify an odd bird and this photo proved the strange bird was a white Rhea (a sort of South American Ostrich) more at home in the rolling plains of Patagonia than a dull damp field near Newton Abbot! There are two species of Rhea a true expert might be able to sort out this to species level - if it was in natural colours, and size!

What's more intriguing is where it has come from and where has it gone - it couldn't fly away! How could a 4ft high (possibly more!) white, flightless bird disappear into countryside...

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 5:54 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

The 4ad Greenland Whitefont's are setting a pattern for their appearance on South Huish Marsh - today they flew in at 11.15 still on the water when I left at 12.00. single Brent Goose, 6 Wigeon 4 Snipe

This afternoon on Thurlestone Marsh - 20 Teal, 20 Lapwing, 3 Snipe and a Jay.

The Starling started to fly in from 16.30, I was trying to estimate each flock to arrive at a more accurate total despite 2 tele calls I still had a total of 210,000- last birds arriving at 16.50. 2 Peregrine and a Sparrowhawk in attendance

Bob B reported a male Black Redstart on his roof in Kingsbridge

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 5:52 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

At dusk (16.55) 4 whooper swans flew onto the marsh from the east, 2 adults and 2 juvs. They tried to land on the lagoon but were driven off by 2 mute swans. To dark to identify ducks on the lagoon but there were plenty. The swans then landed on the main marsh to the north of the lagoon and south of the lane.

 

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 5:38 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Haldon

Travelling over Haldon this afternoon a ring-tail Hen Harrier crossed over the road heading west toward the race course - I even manage to pull over and watch it for a while from the Texico slip road area.

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 5:13 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Aveton Gifford

At low tide:  2 greenshank, 5 common sandpiper, 340 herring gull.

Also: 45 fieldfare & 40 redwing.

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 4:51 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Aveton Gifford

At low tide:  2 greenshan, 5 common sandpiper, 340 herring gull.

Also: 45 fieldfare & 40 redwing.

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 4:51 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Dartmoor

Snow Buntings back at Gibbet Hill, west Dartmoor. Two this morning, feeding on wide tracks about 50 metres west from summit.  [Charlie Elder]
 

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 2:01 pm by Steve Waite in Bird News

Blackcaps

Just a quick note to say that my first Blackcap of the winter has arrived in my Alphington garden, two days later than last year!

One of last years birds.
One of last years birds.

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 12:34 pm by Charlie Fleming in Bird News

Exmouth

Orcombe Point- 0700 - 10ish - 86+ chaffinch, 10+ meadow pipit, c40+ goldfinch, c40+ linnet, c10+ pied wagtail, 2 bullfinch, 10+ starling, 4+ siskin, 3 grey wagtail, 1 greenfinch, 220+ woodpigeon, 1 lapland bunting (top stubble fields with skylarks but not since 0800), c30+ jackdaw, 3 goldcrest, 2+ song thrush, 1 stonechat, 1 reed bunting, 2+ jay, 7 redwing, 1 great spotted woodpecker, 9 crossbill (appeared to be mostly red males!), 1 swallow and 1 coal tit. Surprisingly no bramblings or redpolls this morning.

jay
jay

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 12:05 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

Start Point

Watching the vis mig from the car park 07:20-09:30. Fresh-strong SW wind, occ. heavy showers. All birds flying between south- southeast.

Merlin ( male ), 800 Woodpigeon ( single flock ), Swallow, 10 alba Wagtails, 750 Chaffinch, 630 Goldfinch, 32 Greenfinch, 33 Brambling, 76 Siskin ( good number this late in autumn ? ), 2 Lesser Redpoll, 20 Linnet, Yellowhammer and 4 Reed Bunting. Also a Snow / Lapland Bunting going over calling but could not clinch it to species. Lot of birds going through in difficult watching conditions, counts most certainly a fair bit down on true numbers. Any Bullfinches would not have been heard and the chaffinch flocks i got a decent look at all seemed to contain one or two unheard Brambling for which i would not be surprised if the true count should have been nearer 100.

 

Posted November 2nd, 2012 at 11:08 am by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Thursday 1st November 2012

Thurlestone Bay

 The 4 Greenland White-fronted Goose turned up briefly on South Huish Marsh at 10.30- they move off into stubble fields in the area, also 1db Brent Goose  40Teal, Snipe .

Offshore 1 Red Throated Diver ( west at 12.15 ), 3 Wigeon -on sea with 12 west, 2 Common Scoter, . On the rocks 2 Turnstone, 8 Ringed Plover.

On the patch 3 separate Black Redstart, also AJL had a Marsh Tit ( rare here )

On Thurlestone Marsh -35 Teal, 6 Shoveler, 1 Gadwall, 16 Lapwing

Posted November 1st, 2012 at 6:12 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Blackhill Quarry

A drake mandarin this afternoon. An odd-plumaged bird, presumably a first winter moulting into adult-type plumage. Nowhere near as stunning as the adult but getting there. Also 2 tufted duck and 23 mallard.

Posted November 1st, 2012 at 4:33 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

Berry Hd

A quick visit lunchtime today produced: 1 Firecrest, 4 Chiffchaff, 8 Goldcrests, 2 Blackcaps, 4 Redwing and 3 Siskin.

Firecrest Berry Hd 01/11/12 ML

At Clennon Ponds the Cetti's Warbler was still present also 2 Water Rail, 4 Chiffchaff, 6 Goldcrests a female Wigeon and a drake Pintail.

 

Posted November 1st, 2012 at 2:37 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Kingsbridge Estuary - north

On a falling tide just 35 little egrets, 25 shags, 8 brent geese, 3 grey plovers, 9 barwits, 200 curlews, 4 greenshanks, 42 redshanks, 28 common gulls & 8 rock pipits.

Posted November 1st, 2012 at 1:55 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Wrafton Pond

Male Gadwall, female Shoveler and 5 Wigeon this morning

Posted November 1st, 2012 at 1:14 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Dartmoor - Blackcaps arrive

Just to say the first of our wintering Blackcaps have arrived. We have at least one male and female and possibly two males - two weeks earlier than usual.

I'll start a thread on the Forum under Garden Birds - so add your sightings there.

Posted November 1st, 2012 at 11:16 am in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

Brief visit mid morning between showers.Lots of waterfowl, mostly teal, wigeon and shoveller all well spread out over the fields. Two brent geese were roosting near the canal-side car park. Roosting waders were restricted to 114 curlew and c30 lapwing.

On the lagoon the two red-crested pochard were still present but with increased numbers of tufted duck (8) and gadwall (13).

Flying over c40 redwing and 2 fieldfare going north. Two Cettis showed well on the canal bank. Small flock of meadow pipits (<10) amongst grazing cattle.

Posted November 1st, 2012 at 10:56 am by John Waldon in Bird News

Exmouth

Orcombe Point - 0705 - 0900 - 8+ goldfinch, 77+ chaffinch, 5+ robin, 14+ pied wagtail, 20+ linnet, 10+ meadow pipit, c20+ skylark, 3+ siskin, 4+ blackbird, 1 snipe, 1 hirundine sp (prob house martin), 12 crossbill, 11+ starling, 2 goldcrest, 1+ woodlark, 2+ bullfinch and 1 coal tit. Many more finches higher up and beyond my hearing so numbers once again lower than they should be.

Posted November 1st, 2012 at 10:28 am by Matt Knott in Bird News

Seaton

Marsh Harrier (f) South of Black Hole Marsh 1130 yesterday.

Posted November 1st, 2012 at 8:31 am by Dick Andrews in Bird News

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