Devon Bird Sightings: Bird News from February 2020

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Thank you for your co-operation and stay safe.

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


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Posted October 10th, 2016 at 9:14 am in Bird News

Saturday 29th February 2020


The Bar-tailed Godwit

Posted February 29th at 10:07 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News


Moving on to Fremington I saw Teal, Redshank, Greenshank, Bar-tailed Godwit, Little Egret and the Glossy Ibis. 

RedshankGlossy Ibis
Redshank                             Glossy Ibis

Posted February 29th at 10:03 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Wrafton pond

Early this afternoon around Wrafton pond were two Kingfishers,  f/Goldeneye, m/Pochard and m/Red-crested Pochard.

Male Red-crested PochardCormorantMale Pochard
Male Red-crested Pochard                    Cormorant                                     Male Pochard

Posted February 29th at 9:54 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

River yealm

Went for a walk where the river yealm meets the estuary and saw the regular waders, gulls and ducks.There was a green and red shank that seemed inseparable and a flock 50-60 widgeon.

Posted February 29th at 9:29 pm by Andy Quest in Bird News

Wrafton Pond North Devon

 (m) Red-crested Pochard, (f) Goldeneye and (m) Pochard on Wrafton Pond late this afternoon. 

Red-crested PochardGoldeneyePochard
Red-crested Pochard                              Goldeneye                                           Pochard

Posted February 29th at 6:42 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Matford marsh, Exeter.

Late afternoon:

2 Green sandpiper, 1 Tufted duck, 1 Chiffchaff, 2 Mute swan,several Teal,Wigeon,Shoveler,Coot,Cormorant, on the pond.

Posted February 29th at 6:34 pm by Alan Livsey in Bird News

Plym Estuary

On the Plym Estuary this morning dodging all the debris flowing down were the following.

9 Goosander (4m & 5f), 5 Red-breasted Mergansers (2m & 3f), 107 Dunlin, 158 Redshank, 41 Turnstone, 6 Greenshank, 44 Curlew, 7 Little Grebe and 40 Shelduck.

Posted February 29th at 2:42 pm by Martin Phillips in Bird News

Friday 28th February 2020

Slapton Ley / Beesands Ley

Braved the weather with Richard Green today. 2 Pochards and 6 Goldeneyes at Slapton Ley. Around at Beesands Ley the Ring-necked Duck still present. Also 5 Pochards,  26 Tufted Ducks, 3 Gadwalls and 4 Great Crested Grebes. 2 Shelduck put in a brief appearance.

Posted February 28th at 6:36 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News


 found sheltering in the beech hedge of the garden this morning.  I briefly saw it a couple of days ago by the pond.

Water RailWater Rail
Water Rail


Posted February 28th at 4:44 pm by Margaret Phillips in Bird News


Looked in on Wrafton Pond this morning and saw the two drake Pochard and the female Goldeneye. Also, a bit surprised to see a drake Red-crested Pochard, I looked for the other two, but couldn't find them. In the reserve, a Buzzard again, but no repeat of yesterday's Kingfisher. 17 Teal out on the scrape and 3 Little Egrets nearby.

Posted February 28th at 1:45 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Thursday 27th February 2020

Stover Lake

A couple of hours walking around Stover lake today and I was able to take a few lovely photos.

Male Tufted DuckGreat TitMandarin Duck
Male Tufted Duck                                      Great Tit                                     Mandarin Duck

Posted February 27th at 10:57 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

South Huish Marsh

Photo to accompany previous post

Common Snipe _South Huish Marsh - 27.02.2020
Common Snipe _South Huish Marsh - 27.02.2020

Posted February 27th at 7:16 pm by Dave Pakes in Bird News

Braunton North Devon

A quick look around this patch this afternoon proved productive with 2 Male Pochard and 4 Snipe on Wrafton Pond. 250+ Golden Plover on the great field, a hunting Barn Owl over the same area and the highlight was a male Merlin over Braunton marsh. 20+ Redshank on the Caen Estuary and 4 Little Grebe. 

Posted February 27th at 6:58 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

South Huish Marsh

Amusing, but slightly sad, to see this ill-equipped, Common Snipe trying to land and perch on a fence at South Huish Marsh this afternoon. Local guru Mike P on his informative Thurlestone Bay website has correctly renamed the Marsh as South Huish Lake! It would appear there is a problem with the now submerged outflow, leaving little, if any, reedbed. exposed for the likes of snipe! All the usual birds, as per Mike's website, present including Sparrow Hawk, Kestrel and Buzzard and a nice pair of feeding Stonechat.

Posted February 27th at 6:09 pm by Dave Pakes in Bird News

Lynton and Lynmouth

Dippers interested in nest sights,pair of Grey Wagtails,pair of Chiffchaff.Spring is springing.

          ChiffchaffDipperGrey Wagtail
                      Chiffchaff                  Dipper                                                      Grey Wagtail

Posted February 27th at 4:58 pm by john elvin in Bird News


Singing male Chiffchaff at Turf Locks 13:00 today.

Posted February 27th at 2:18 pm by Martin Overy in Bird News

Velator reserve

The river was running very brown again this morning, and it will probably be the same tomorrow. However it did help to bring the bird of the day into the reserve - A Kingfisher flew across the pond and landed on a perch I had put there by accident recently. It was only when I looked at it later on that I realised it would be perfect for a Kingfisher - this one duly smacked the tiny fish it was carrying a few times before it headed off. Also present: Buzzard, 5 Redwing,1 Song Thrush, most of the usual suspects plus calling Tawny Owl and Cetti's Warbler.

Nearby on Wrafton Pond, 2 drake Pochard.

Posted February 27th at 2:07 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News


28 Cirl Buntings, 5 Yellowhammers & 1 Reed Bunting  on seed in 2nd car park at Broadsands this mornig.

Posted February 27th at 12:55 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Wednesday 26th February 2020

Hope cove.

Sat on a bench for lunch at Hope cove, really windy. Lots of herring gulls, a couple of ravens passed several times, a kestrel and a few stock doves. Grey seals quite close in on most days.

Herring GullJackdawRaven
Herring Gull                                 Jackdaw                                               Raven

Posted February 26th at 7:54 pm by Richie Moore in Bird News

Finches near Cator Court

c25 Brambling among c250 Chaffinch feeding under beech trees just west of Cator Court (at SX676772) at 12.30pm (26 Feb)

Posted February 26th at 4:29 pm by Colin Brooks in Bird News


Two Siberian Chiffchaffs still in the marsh behind the main beach also at least 4 collybita Chiffchaffs, 2 Stonechat, 2 Firecrest and 2 Goldcrest.

16 Cirl Buntings and 3 Yellowhammers on seed in the 2nd car park. Two Great Northern Divers off Elberry Headland.

Siberian Chiffchaff Broadsands 26th Feb 2020 ML

Siberian  tristis Chiffchaff, Broadsands

Posted February 26th at 4:19 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News


No rain this morning - and despite the strong wind a ringed Chiffchaff was finding something along the margins of the pond. a Buzzard flew out from the eastern trees. 7 Canada Geese  and a pair of Gadwall on the pond. A pair of Bullfinches on a peanut feeder. A Little Egret out on the scrape where there were also a few Meadow Pipits, which reminds me - there was a Water Pipit in the field outside the gates yesterday.

Posted February 26th at 1:19 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Tuesday 25th February 2020

exmouth ringneck parakeet

mear valley exmouth 9 ringneck parakeet

Posted February 25th at 9:22 pm by barry insull in Bird News

Taw Estuary

Single Spoonbill foraging on the estuary late afternoon.

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


Posted February 25th at 6:42 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Upper and Lower Tamar Lake

The Lower Lake this morning.

36 Goosander 07:15

Upper Lake.

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

Posted February 25th at 1:19 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Underwood, Plympton

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

Posted February 25th at 8:57 am by Jason Smart in Bird News

Monday 24th February 2020


On Lundy today. 

1st Winter Glaucous Gull
1st Winter Glaucous Gull

Posted February 24th at 9:57 pm by Martin Thorne in Bird News


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

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

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

Posted February 24th at 7:20 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Crossbills and Bramblings at Haldon

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

Posted February 24th at 3:56 pm by Mark Brandon in Bird News

East Devon Branch AGM

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

Posted February 24th at 2:20 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Roadford Lake

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

Posted February 24th at 7:35 am by Chris Baines in Bird News

Sunday 23rd February 2020

Wrafton pond

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

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

Posted February 23rd at 11:26 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Willand + Broadhembury

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

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

Posted February 23rd at 10:05 pm by James Morrison in Bird News

stuartline birding Cruise 23rd February 2020

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

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

Posted February 23rd at 7:13 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Exe Estuary, Topsham

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

Posted February 23rd at 6:42 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Woodbury fort

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

Posted February 23rd at 6:34 pm by Dave scott in Bird News

Exe Estuary cruise 22 February

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

Posted February 23rd at 11:17 am by Dave Smallshire in Bird News

Saturday 22nd February 2020

Freminton Pill

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

Little Egret and Glossy Ibis
Little Egret and Glossy Ibis

Posted February 22nd at 9:06 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Plymouth Parakeets

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

Posted February 22nd at 7:24 pm in Bird News


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

Curlew                              redshank                                                         Kestrel

Posted February 22nd at 5:42 pm by Philip worth in Bird News


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

Posted February 22nd at 9:57 am by Peter Reay in Bird News

Friday 21st February 2020

Stuartline birding Cruise 21st February 2020

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

Slavonian Grebe
Slavonian Grebe

Black-tailed Godwit
Black-tailed Godwit

Grey Seal
Grey Seal

Posted February 21st at 8:18 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Sparrow Hawk dusk "kill" South Brent

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

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

Posted February 21st at 6:13 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Wrafton Pond

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

Yesterday 7 Canada Geese in the reserve.

Posted February 21st at 4:34 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Exe Estuary 20 February

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


Posted February 21st at 11:36 am by Dave Smallshire in Bird News


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

Mistle Thrush
Mistle Thrush

Posted February 21st at 10:31 am by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Thursday 20th February 2020

Shipley ~ South Brent

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

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

Posted February 20th at 5:47 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Underwood, Plympton

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

Posted February 20th at 8:43 am by Jason Smart in Bird News

Wednesday 19th February 2020

Ideford Common


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

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

Posted February 19th at 5:31 pm by Paul Darlington in Bird News

Broadsands, Paignton

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

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

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

Posted February 19th at 3:43 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Red Breasted Mergansers at Bowcombe Creek

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


Posted February 19th at 9:14 am by bob barrow in Bird News

Tuesday 18th February 2020

Lower tamar Lake

This morning while topping up the feeders.

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

Posted February 18th at 7:37 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Roadford Reservoir

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

Record photos



Posted February 18th at 6:12 pm in Bird News

18/02/2010 Mouth of Teign Estuary

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

Posted February 18th at 2:22 pm by Pete Stevens in Bird News


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

Posted February 18th at 10:30 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Monday 17th February 2020

Combe Martin gulls

Sorry Philip both small gulls in your photos are black-headed gulls. White leading edge and black tipping to pale grey wing is diagnostic. Med gulls have almost plain white wings (as adults) plus a notable 'droop' to the bill.

Posted February 17th at 11:04 pm by Lowell Mills in Bird News

Combemartin sea front

During a morning walk around the seafront with the dog, there appeared to be a great Northern diver in the Newberry beach area, and some med gulls in various states of plumage. I'm not good with gull identification and yearly states so stand corrected,  also a strikingly marked young herring gull.. I returned later on in the morning with the camera, no God but the gulls were still around.

Med gull summer plumage ? Med gull Young herring gull ?
Med gull summer plumage ?            Med gull              Young herring gull ?

Eds: thanks Lowell for the corrected comments above. and yes the right hand bird is a young Herring Gull.

Posted February 17th at 9:17 pm by Philip worth in Bird News

Ringed plovers

6 Ringed Plovers seen well from the car park in Budliegh Salterton by the river otter this afternoon. The birds were feeding on the mud flats on the tidal section when the tide was out. 

Posted February 17th at 6:13 pm by John Wilkes in Bird News

Underwood, Plympton

The Black Redstart was present in the garden, on and off, for most of the day, despite being chased off occasionally by a Robin. A small flock of Long-tailed Tits has really taken big time to our hanging basket of dried mealworms.

Black RedstartBlack RedstartLong-tailed Tit
Black Redstart                      Black Redstart                      Long-tailed Tit

Posted February 17th at 5:35 pm by Jason Smart in Bird News

Powderham Church - Turf. Starcross

10 members of DB attended the East Devon Branch fieldtrip this morning and recorded c. 40 species.  From the church car park a pair of Egyptian Geese were seen in the parkland and later present flying up river.  On the estuary, large flocks of waders were present with good numbers of Grey Plover, Dunlin and some Knot. Smaller numbers of Avocet, Grey Plover and 3 Mergansers were closer inshore.   A large number of Brent Geese were present in the fields.  A few smaller birds were present with Stonechat, Meadow Pipit and others  putting in an appearance.  Thanks to Alex and Shelagh Parsons for leading us.

NOTE: the road from the Sailing Club to Starcross is impassable due to deep flood water.

A later visit to Starcross after lunch produced 2 Cattle Egrets, 17 Redshank and others in the field below the National Laboratory.

Our next event is to be held at 19.30 on Monday 5 MARCH at the Blue Ball Inn, Sidford.  The speaker is David White, naturalist and winning photographer of the 2018 Countryfile calendar competition.  His talk will be followed by a short AGM.  £2 entrance on the door to cover expenses. 

Posted February 17th at 5:18 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News


At least 27 Cattle Egret between Church Road and the A379 at 09:22.

Posted February 17th at 1:52 pm by Paul Bray in Bird News

Wrafton pond

I took advantage of the short sunny spell this afternoon and went down to Wrafton pond. It was very quite, no gulls and just a few M/F Mallard some Moorhen, Coots and our friend the female Goldeneye.

Female GoldeneyeFemale Goldeneye displaying her inner wings feathers
Female Goldeneye                      Female Goldeneye displaying her inner wings feathers

Posted February 17th at 12:05 am by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Sunday 16th February 2020

Starling murmuration Ludwell Valley playing fields

Small Starling murmuration 2 - 4 thousand birds seen from Ludwell Valley playing fields tonight from about 17.15. Been around there for a couple of weeks. 


Posted February 16th at 6:42 pm by Martin Rooney in Bird News

South Brent ~ Sparrow sp

Given the weather a weekend of garden bird watching, 26 species ticked off around the feeders today including 5 Bullfinch, the first female Siskin and first Yellow Hammer of the season.

The male "Italian Sparrow sp" continues to frequent the feed station on a daily basis.

At least 7 Greenfinch, 5 Long Tailed Tit, fly over Raven and Redwing flock, Nuthatch, Wren, last tick of the day was a Song Thrush.

Posted February 16th at 5:20 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

West Charleton Marsh

Cattle Egret present this morning

Posted February 16th at 2:33 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Underwood, Plympton

The Black Redstart is still visiting the garden daily, although it is generally  quite elusive.

Posted February 16th at 9:17 am by Jason Smart in Bird News

Saturday 15th February 2020

ford park cemetery plymouth

Around 60 ringneck parakeet

Posted February 15th at 7:56 pm by barry insull in Bird News


Not pleasant conditions on the Skern this afternoon. On the plus side virtually no dogs. The only species away from the norm was a single Ruff feeding around a much enlarged Greysands pool

Posted February 15th at 3:58 pm by Roger Doble in Bird News

Underwood, Plympton

Female black redstart present on a roof and in a garden in Lavinia Drive yesterday. Sorry for the late post. 

Posted February 15th at 2:03 pm by Angela Woolcock in Bird News

Friday 14th February 2020

The highlight of a dismal day.

The Teign at Passages House Inn, Kingsteighnton. Atrocious weather conditions and an absence of most birds almost made the trip fruitless but in the last fifteen minutes before we had to leave, seven mergansers swam into view, five females and two males. Drizzle meant photographs were of poor quality but nonetheless worth the journey.

Posted February 14th at 8:09 pm by Philip L. Fairclough in Bird News

Plym Estuary.

On this mornings high tide, the following were seen.

Peregrine 2, Little Egret 3, GND 2, Goosander 12 (5m & 7f), Red-breasted Merganser 4 (2m & 2f), Shag 1, Little Grebe 10, Redshank 155, Dunlin 313, Curlew 35, Greenshank 6, Snipe 3 & Wigeon 6 (2m & 4f).

Posted February 14th at 6:00 pm by Martin Phillips in Bird News

Exmouth - Shelley

Black Redstart (m) present this morning on the low garage roofs near sailiing club

Posted February 14th at 3:28 pm by Rupert Ormerod in Bird News

Northam Burrows

Tootled  over to the Skern this morning. Never seen so many dogs!! A very high tide had pushed most of the birds onto the pool the other side of the road. Adam (from Holsworthy) and I checked and checked again all the Gulls that were being given a hard time by the dogs. Virtually all Black-headed, with good numbers of Common. We met another birder (dog but no bins) who told us that the Snow Buntings had recently reappeared over by the Visitor Centre. I walked from there out to the point around the 8th green - this has suffered some severe damage from the recent storms which has washed away a stretch of the high embankment of pebble ridge. No Buntings - just two Pied Wagtails. Back to the Visitor centre, where I once again met Adam. He went off to look along the pebble ridge - I went back towards my car - and a few small Gulls took off in front of me, one of which looked much smaller. Could this be the Bonaparte's Gull? Well I came to the conclusion that it was a first calendar year Little Gull. The black wing bar was very distinct. It was however not flying like a typical Tern-like Little Gull. It drifted off over the Burrows towards the Skern to where the returning Adam and I followed, but no further sign.

Good numbers of Oystercatcher and Curlew - shame about the cancellation of yesterday's netting attempt. Also numbers of Black-tailed Godwit, Golden Plover and Redshank along with 200+ Wigeon.

Posted February 14th at 1:55 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Tamar Upper Lake

On the Upper Lake this morning,

4 Ring-necked Duck 3m 1f

The Lower Lake had 5 Great Crested Grebe.

Posted February 14th at 12:18 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Thursday 13th February 2020

Underwood, Plympton

The Black Redstart still present today, occasionally. It might be viewable from the turning area at the end of Hill Close, looking south.

Posted February 13th at 9:23 pm by Jason Smart in Bird News

Around the Exe

A count of Forty One Cattle Egret at Cockwood in the fields between the pub on Church Road and the A379 (map ref SX974807)


On the Exe at Starcross, six Red Breasted Merganser, two Shag, Curlew, Redshank, Turnstone, numerous Dunlin. On the Golf course a large number of Brent Geese, along with Curlew, Lapwing, Oyster Catcher and a Pied Wagtail.

Kestrel at Powderham.

On the Exminster marshes lots of Wigeon, other duck species included Pintail, Teal, Shoveller and Shell duck. A Ruff on the new scrapes along with Lapwing, Curlew, Dunlin and Starling.

Snow Goose in with some Canada Geese.

Back home at South Brent a Tawny owl in its Holly tree roost, around the feeders, Bullfinch M&F, Nuthatch, Song Thrush, around 30 Starling and the male “Italian type Sparrow “ of undetermined origin.

Posted February 13th at 6:00 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News


First winter Bonaparte's Gull resting with Black-headed Gulls around 30m from the road half way along the Skern at 15.10

Posted February 13th at 3:37 pm by Roger Doble in Bird News

Curlew Sandpiper - Exe Estuary

A single, breeding plumage Curlew Sandpiper amongst the Dunlin flocks on the mudflats off Powderham. 1pm 12th February.  Brick red below, dark above, slightly larger than Dunlins

Posted February 13th at 12:58 pm by Shelagh and Alexander Parsons in Bird News

Wednesday 12th February 2020

Dartmoor: Cadover area

One male Hen Harrier seen around Trowlesworthy.

Seven Goosander on Upper Shaugh Lake.

21 Tufted Duck, 3 Little Grebe, 8 Teal and 3 Moorhen on Whitehill Yeo Pit (nr Big Pond).

Posted February 12th at 7:32 pm by Chris E in Bird News

Underwood, Plympton

We had a Black Redstart in the back garden all afternoon, on and off, much to the displeasure of the local Robin. I imagine it's the same bird we saw on 30 November. A Rook has learnt how to raid the seed feeders.

Black Redstart  Rook
Black Redstart                                                            Rook

Posted February 12th at 5:24 pm by Jason Smart in Bird News

Paignton garden

Lesser Whitethroat since Jan 27 a daily visitor to feeders. Still visiting today 12th February. Verified by Mike L

Lesser Whitethroat Paington Feb 2020 lesser Whitethroat Paignton Feb 2020 Lesser Whitethroat Paignton Feb 2020

Watched on a dull day the bird showed unremarkable warm brownish on upper parts and wings. The brownish did extend high into the nape. It did look relatively short winged, the tail was not particularly long with very little white on the outer tail feathers. The only call heard was a fairly standard softish LW 'tack'.  Possibly a dull Blythi but also perhaps just a slightly browner curruca not one I would like to nail to a subspecies without DNA! ML

Posted February 12th at 4:19 pm by Jacqui Beevers in Bird News

Melbury forest

2, Brambling,m&f+100 Chaffinches.Crossbills heard calling

Posted February 12th at 2:23 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Fremington Quay

Delighted to see a Spoonbill at the mouth of the estuary at Fremington Quay yesterday afternoon. Other birds of interest were Curlews, Redshanks, Greenshank, Oystercatchers and Common Sandpipers.


Posted February 12th at 2:02 pm by Duncan Leitch in Bird News

Tuesday 11th February 2020

Wrafton pond

Male Pochard, Male and female Shoveler the female Goldeneye still around and some Teal.

Male Shoveler Male Pochard Tufted Duck on Stover Lake
Male Shoveler                                       Male Pochard                 Tufted Duck on Stover Lake

Posted February 11th at 9:30 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Stover Lake

A good day out a Stover Lake. 4 M/F Mandarin duck. Coal/Marsh tit, Tree Creeper, and Tufted duck.

Tree Creeper Mandarin duck Coal/Marsh tit
Tree Creeper                                 Mandarin duck                         Eds: Marsh tit

Posted February 11th at 9:19 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Golden Plover.

I was out taking landscape photos on Dartmoor , near to Sharpitor , when a flock of Golden Plover flew by.

Posted February 11th at 7:30 pm by Peter Castle in Bird News

South Devon Group

talk poster

Posted February 11th at 6:03 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Dart's Farm

About 50 Fieldfare viewed from the hide at Dart's Farm today around 4 pm.


Posted February 11th at 5:33 pm by Martin Rooney in Bird News

Goosander counts

134 Goosanders were located in Devon around dawn on 8 Feb, cf. 146 in Jan. The total includes only nine on Dartmoor, where most sites were not covered. The main site was again Meeth with 56, followed by Tamar Lakes (32), Blue Waters (19), Plym Estuary (10), smaller numbers at Clovelly and Dartington and zero counts at Portworthy and Stover. Thanks to all who took part.

Posted February 11th at 3:25 pm by Peter Reay in Bird News

Garden Widworthy

Two more shots of Marsh / Willow Tit, if that helps i.d.
I’m presuming it’s the same bird!


Eds: it is a Marsh Tit see post below for details

Posted February 11th at 8:41 am by Geoff Mitchell in Bird News

Monday 10th February 2020


The Collared Dove image that I've had trouble sending.

Collared Dove.
Collared Dove.

Posted February 10th at 12:44 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Sunday 9th February 2020

Stuartline Cruise 9th February 2020

Well, what an exhilarating and enjoyable cruise we all had today thanks to Skipper Jake and the Crew Lauren and Craig. With some birds keeping their heads down sheltering for the strong wind there was a good diverse number of birds throughout the estuary to be seen by the visitors.  Still with us the Red-Necked Grebe was fishing off Shelley Beach, the Slavonian Grebe put in an appearance off Cockwood and several Great Crested Grebes were fishing the lower reaches. Turnstones were seen in flight and feeding around Starcross. Bar-Tailed Godwits and Greenshank were seen feeding near the Ken confluence. Shelduck were out in numbers along with a few Widgeon and Pintail off Lympstone. With a guest appearance of Mike Langman as assistant spotter we picked out Grey Plover, Dunlin, Black-tailed Godwit and our first Avocets near the Clyst confluence. A Peregrine Falcon put in an appearance low over the mudflats heading towards Powderham Marsh then turned towards Stracross. A large flock of mixed Godwits mainly black-tailed were viewed further up the estuary and stayed as we cruised by. Avocets and mixed Gull flocks were seen all the way to Topsham with plenty of Red Breasted Mergansers seen along this stretch. A small flock of Lapwing finished off this memorable afternoon cruising.

Posted February 9th at 8:14 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Wrafton pond

The Collared Dove and Little Grebe that I saw on my way and on Wrafton pond on Thursday 6.

Little Grebe
Little Grebe

Posted February 9th at 7:47 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Saturday 8th February 2020

Garden today, Widworthy

Willow Tit, (I think).


Eds: more likely Marsh Tit based on those two photos.. Buffy, grey back to  cheeks, very pale flanks and in 1st picture white spot on upper mandible along cutting edges.

Posted February 8th at 10:51 pm by Geoff Mitchell in Bird News

Torbay Coast ~ Dartmoor

A mixed days birding, Berry Head this morning not overly busy with bird life, highlights being a pod of Common Dolphin below the headland followed by a smaller number of Harbour Porpoise. Plenty of Guillemot movement, several Fulmar and a Kittiwake.

Marine Parade, Preston, 41 Turnstone the most I have seen there and three flyby Oyster Catcher.

Livermead beach, large numbers of Black Headed Gull accompanied by an adult Mediterranean Gull and nine Turnstone on the beach.

Aish Ridge to Corringdon Ball (on Dartmoor above South Brent) apart from a mixed flock of some 200 mixed Corvids, mostly Jackdaws, very little bird life to be seen, a single Blackbird, a Wren, one Raven, a small number of Carrion Crow and a fly over Herring Gull. On leaving a female Sparrow hawk hunting the hedgerows of the agricultural land below the moor, I suspect she went hungry.

Sparrow sp

Back home around the garden feeders, female Reed Bunting, male Bullfinch, two Greenfinch, numerous House Sparrow and Chaffinch, the male Sparrow sp of undetermined origin came in several times, a Sparrow hawk cleared the feeders at one point.

Posted February 8th at 9:27 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Wrafton Pond

Wrafton pond was a little quit today, at least it was between 13.00 and 14.30. Just a few Snipe on the far side to the pond viewed from the wooden walkway. The female Goldeneye, a couple of Gadwall and the Llittle Grebes are still around. In the field opposite the pond were a good number of Teal M & F. On my way to the pond, a Collared Dove was spotted in bushes near entrance to the path.

Female Goldeneye
Female Goldeneye

Two Snipe
Two Snipe

Posted February 8th at 9:04 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Stuartline Cruise 8th February 2020

A sunny day on todays cruise always helps to show off the birds on the Exe Estuary. What a start to this cruise was great views of the Red-necked Grebe. There was great excitement as visitors knew this was a special bird to see as they were told how rare this sighting was for them as the last time a Red Necked Grebe was seen in the Estuary was around 6 years ago. The Slavonian Grebe was also visible off Cockwood as we turned the bend at the Warren Wildlife Refuge mudflats. Several Great crested Grebe were seen on the way up stream towards Topsham with several starting to show the breeding plumage developing. Good views of Pintail in flight and at the waters edge. Great views of a young Grey Seal on a sandbank near the Clyst confluence. From this location to Topsham really large numbers of DB Brent Geese were seen at the waters edge and in the air, probably 1200+ were seen producing spectacular views for the visitors. Across the mudbanks both sides of the channel large numbers of Dunlin 500+ Black Tailed Godwits 500+ Golden Plover 500+ Avocets 300+ a sprinkling of Grey Plover, Ringed Plover, Bar Tailed Godwit, Redshank, an odd Greenshank Shelduck, 6 Sanderling good numbers of Curlew and 30+ Knot. At least 20+ Red Breasted Mergansers were seen throughout the trip. A Peregrine made a distant appearance putting up 200+ Lapwing over Exminster Marsh. This turned out to be an exceptional cruise for the visitors and enjoyed by all.

Red-necked Grebe
Red-necked Grebe

Grey Seal
Grey Seal

Posted February 8th at 7:38 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News

Exminster Marsh


200+ Brent Geese, 300+ Wigeon, 100+ Lapwing, 100+ Teal, 7 Pintail, 4 Tufted duck, 2 Egyptian Geese (together with Canada geese), 1 Kingfisher, 1 Water Rail, 4 Greenfinch, 3 Chiffchaff, 2 Stonechat, 1 Sparrowhawk, 1 Marsh Harrier flew overhead.

Egyptian Geese.
Egyptian Geese.

Posted February 8th at 7:12 pm by Alan Livsey in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

This morning at the Lake.

32 Goosander 12m 20f, 1 Green Sandpiper, 4 Redwing, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 2 Grey Heron, 3 Willow Tit, 2 Long-tailed Tit, 1 Tawny Owl,4 Great Crested Grebe.

Posted February 8th at 4:12 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

meeth quarry

a look around meeth reserve this morning, on the main lake , goosesanders, mallard, tufted, gadwal and teal,  great crested grebe, on the top lake, little grebe, a single ring neck duck with two tufted duck and three red crested pochard 2m and 1f. possibly the three pochards from velator.

Posted February 8th at 3:19 pm by roger jewell in Bird News

Bowcombe Creek - Avocets

3 Avocets generally keeping together, a touch flighty but seen between the viewing platform and north of there where the 11kv power line crosses the creek between 09:30 and 10:00 this morning (Saturday). Almost certainly the same birds thought to have been seen from the bus crossing New Bridge yesterday morning (Friday)

Posted February 8th at 11:13 am by Barrie Whitehall in Bird News

Taw & Torridge Outdoor Meeting Cancelled

Meeting cancelled. Sunday 9 February meeting has been cancelled due to the adverse weather report.

Posted February 8th at 11:06 am by John & Karen Towers & Sims in Bird News

Friday 7th February 2020

RPSB cruise from Topsham

LB Dowitcher seen just back from where the Clyst joins the Exe

Posted February 7th at 9:25 pm by G and L Carr in Bird News

Stuartline Cruise 7th February 2020

To start the Cruise the visitors were treated to a lone Grey Seal fishing off Pier Head. There were plenty of birds on show today for the visitors with good numbers of Brent Geese throughout the Estuary. Oystercatchers were in Good number to. We were hopeful to see the Red-Necked Grebe which has been on the estuary for the last 10 days but were unable to locate it however the Slavonian Grebe was on Show off Cockwood for all to see. Good numbers of Shelduck were seen along with 150+ Pintail off Lympstone. 20+ Red Breasted Mergansers were seen throughout from Dawlish Warren to Topsham. Several Great Crested Grebe were seen and 5 Goldeneye all were flying. The top end of the Estuary were full of birds with 200+ Avocets, 500+ Golden Plover 200+ Lapwing 400+ Black tailed Godwit with a few Bar tailed Godwit in a mixed flock with several hundred Dunlin with several Grey Plover scattered across the mud around Turf Lock. As usual Curlew and Redshank were in good numbers throughout the upper estuary. 

Posted February 7th at 8:01 pm by Derek Carter in Bird News


Goldcrest racing around to catch what it can before the storm? 3 Bullfinch - two of which - both males - were hanging on a peanut feeder. 1 Gadwall, one Moorhen and one Little Grebe - first sighting here since 9th November.

Outside near the scrape an Oystercatcher. Was I seeing things?

Posted February 7th at 7:46 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Fremington Pill

The Glossy Ibis is still around. This time it was near the old railway bridge.

Glossy Ibis
Glossy Ibis

Posted February 7th at 6:46 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Ringed Starling ~ South Brent

I know that many of our over wintering Starlings are from outside of the UK, this ringed one arrived at my garden feed station today from the images taken the ring reads in part (top line) ZOO.1 M (middle line)  LITH (bottom line) KH9.

I am guessing that the LITH would suggest Lithuania as a country of origin as far as it being ringed.


Posted February 7th at 5:43 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

River Dart

2 pairs of Mandarin ducks resting on the river bank, seen from the kayak, about 2 miles below Totnes.

Posted February 7th at 5:27 pm by Alun Sherwood in Bird News



Wasn’t going to go to Mansands today, but remembered I had my WeBS count to do, glad I did.

Bluewinged Teal Mansands 070220PA Bluewinged Teal Mansands 070220PA

                                                          Blue-winged Teal

Posted February 7th at 2:08 pm by Paul Albrechtsen in Bird News

Bolt Tail

Best was Red-throated Diver going east; also Med Gull, 2 Kittiwakes, Fulmar, c.20 auks (one Razorbill at least)  and several Shags gathering nesting material.

Posted February 7th at 2:02 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News


One Hawfinch seen at Haldon Forest, Left of pylon looking from road in clearing on the other side of the tree line. Several Crossbill and Siskin also 

Posted February 7th at 1:51 pm by Barry Rankine in Bird News


A trip up to Starcross yesterday saw a large flock of Brent Geese fly in and land on the estuary, not long after they moved to the adjacent field. Whilst watching the Brant/Brent geese two Egyptian Geese flew over and landed in the next field.

Black Brant/Brent GeeseEgyptian Goose
Brent Geese                              Egyptian Goose

Posted February 7th at 9:16 am by Duncan Leitch in Bird News

Thursday 6th February 2020

Braunton Marshes

When arriving at the Toll House on the bike my attention was focused skyward on a murmuration of starlings forming a ball shape (like a fish ball) to escape a hunting Peregrine. Near the White House I was photographing a Great tit when a sudden gust of wind passed very close to my right shoulder. A female Sparrowhawk landed on a branch only 2 metres in front of me, the great tit escaped!


Posted February 6th at 9:43 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Baggy Point

Out at Baggy Point this afternoon (6 February) seen in addition to the Cormorant sporting a white/silver ring, a Dunnock, and a male Stonechat were two Stock Doves, two Kestrels, six Rock Pipits and a number of other seabirds.

KestrelStock DoveCropped image of the leading bird.
Kestrel                                       Feral Dove               Cropped image of the leading bird.

Eds: These are Feral Doves/Pigeons Stock Dove lack white in all of the upper parts and wings.

Posted February 6th at 8:54 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Baggy Point

Out at Baggy Point this afternoon (6 February) no sign of the Diver reported by Rob Jutsum. Cormorant sporting a white/silver ring _too far away to read details, a Dunnock, two Stock Doves, two Kestrels, six Rock Pipits and a male Stonechat.

Cormorant with ringDunnockStoneschat
Cormorant with ring          Dunnock                        Stoneschat

Posted February 6th at 8:46 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Tarka Trail

Thrilled to watch, at close range, a pair of smart dippers busy gathering moss beside the Torridge, about 100 yards Torrington side of the Watergate Bridge layby.  Next time I won't leave the camera in the car.  Also a red admiral enjoying the winter sunshine at RHS Rosemoor.  Birds very active there on the feeders, including coal, great, blue and long-tailed tits and scores of chaffinches.  Greenfinch and goldfinches heard, a goldcrest fidgetting in a cherry tree, and a song thrush tuning up in full view on top of a yew hedge.

Posted February 6th at 7:47 pm by Hilary Vivian in Bird News

Mansands yesterday

Photos of the Blue-winged teal taken yesterday afternoon. It's amazing how quickly this bird has moulted into near-adult plumage - compare with the picture posted on DBS by Pete Aley on 3rd January.

Blue-winged teal  Blue-winged teal
Blue-winged teal                               Blue-winged teal

Posted February 6th at 7:36 pm by Chris Proctor in Bird News

Fingle Bridge, N.Dartmoor

24 members of DB attended the East Devon Branch fieldtrip to the Teign Valley today and took the north path up river to the footbridge and then the high walk below Castle Drogo.  The path on the southern bank was closed due to repair work but this is due to open again in the next day or so.

The main birds of interest came from Dipper, Nuthatch, Grey Wagtail, Treecreeper, Goldcrest, Buzzard, Raven, Mistle Thrush, Sparrow Hawk and Goosander.   Several species were seen in multiple numbers.  An informal count of 21 species was made for the day (which meant there were more of us than bird species) but an enjoyable day was nevertheless had. 

Posted February 6th at 5:48 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

South Brent / Bittaford

Five very noisy and raucous Jays at home first thing this morning, the garden feed station was busy throughout the day at one point a count of 24 House Sparrow, numerous Chaffinch, others included Goldfinch, Greenfinch, Bullfinch M&F, Nuthatch, Dunnock, Long Tailed Tit, Pied Wagtail, Starling and the "Italian Sparrow sp", later in the afternoon a small flock of Redwing in the field hedge, all birds being flushed when a female Sparrowhawk came through.

A mid morning walk along the Red Lake (Puffing Billy) track above Bittaford gave small numbers of Meadow Pipit and Skylark, singles of Blackbird, Stonechat and Redwing, highlight of the walk was a female Merlin.

Italian Sparrow sp

Posted February 6th at 4:51 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Emsworthy Mire

Nice flock of around 50 Fieldfare this morning, with just 2 Redwings.

Posted February 6th at 11:59 am by Nick Potter in Bird News

Climate change or what?

Apologies, but in my eagerness to report the Wilson's Phalarope yesterday, I omitted another quite extraordinary sighting.

At Bowling Green Marsh between 08.45 and 9 o'clock a single SWALLOW flew over.

Posted February 6th at 10:22 am by Francis Welland in Bird News

Stover Lake

This is the mystery duck seen on Stover lake yesterday.  It might be an escapee domesticated duck. Larger the a Mallard but smaller that a shelduck. I forgot to attach the image and send it with the others that were sent yesterday. I also did some Googling regarding the Chaffinch and found something called Scaly Leg Mites.

Any ideas?     This could be a "Scaly Leg Mite" condition.
Any ideas? Eds: Muscovy X                      This could be a "Scaly Leg Mite" condition.

Posted February 6th at 9:33 am by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Wanted: early rising Goosander counter on north Dartmoor

25 Goosanders at Tamar Lakes yesterday, 11 at Avon Dam and three at Stover, but how many in Devon as a whole? Hopefully the synchronised dawn roost count on Saturday (8th) will reveal all, but we need one more counter to cover either Meldon or Fernworthy on Dartmoor. If you can help (and get to site no later than 7 am) please get in touch with me on asap.

Posted February 6th at 9:01 am by Peter Reay in Bird News

Wednesday 5th February 2020

Stover Lake

4 Roosting Cormorants in a tree, Record shot of a M/F Goosander,  six or more Male and Female Tufted duck and many of the usual suspects, coots, Moorhens and a couple of Swans

Cormorants RoostingMale Tufted duckRecord shot of male and female Goosander
Cormorants Roosting                 Male Tufted duck                     Record shot of male and female Goosander

Posted February 5th at 10:32 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Stover Lake

Got a couple of photos of a M/F Chaffinch with leg problems. And a quick shot of an unknown duck. 

Female Chaffinch with leg problems    Male Chaffinch with leg problems
Female Chaffinch with leg problems     Male Chaffinch with leg problems

Posted February 5th at 10:19 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News


The Blue-winged teal showed well early afternoon in the main pool. Also present, mallard, gadwall, teal, tufted duck, moorhen, coot, and singing cettis warbler. A black redstart was on the coastguard cottage roof with pied and grey wagtail, and a chiffchaff.

Posted February 5th at 10:14 pm by Chris Proctor in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

This morning on the lake,

25 Goosander 9m 16f, 3 Great Crested Grebe, 1 Green Sandpiper, 3 Willow Tit, 6 Tufted Duck.

Posted February 5th at 7:14 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Exminster Marsh

An adult Spoonbill on Exminster Marsh for most of the day today viewable distantly from canal bank by car park 

Posted February 5th at 6:26 pm by Mark Bailey in Bird News

Berry Head

Cliff full of guillemots at lunchtime - until some idiot abseiled directly down the middle of the colony! Tried to report via cafe but all rangers etc unobtainable. 

Posted February 5th at 5:58 pm by Andy Rook in Bird News

Wilson's Phalarope

Birding around the Exe today with a fellow birder. Both of us 100% certain ….Wilson's Phalarope.

Viewed in the estuary at around 11am from the Powderham platform (over the railway) where the Kenn runs into the Exe. Excellent viewing conditions, sunny and flat calm, and seen for a couple of minutes moving upstream.

Posted February 5th at 5:24 pm by Francis Welland in Bird News

N Devon

Amongst a few birds ringed in the reserve this morning were a Chiffchaff (that's 36 this winter since mid-October) and 2 Reed Buntings - another seen.

To add to Rob's sightings at Baggy Point this afternoon, 5 Stonechat, one harbour Porpoise, as well as a Grey Seal - which was feeding on something large and attracting a few Gulls - south of the point -  a very calm sea making observation so much easier.

Posted February 5th at 5:12 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Soar Mill Valley & Southdown Farm

Final farmland bird count of the winter with Skylarks down by two-thirds to 360, most gone back to the moors? Also: 84 Yellowhammer, 29 Cirl Bunting, 29 Pheasant, 33 Stock Dove, 230 Jackdaw, 130 Rook, 100 Carrion Crow,16 Meadow Pipit, 10 Song Thrush, 80 Linnet, 3 Greenfinch and the first migrant a Mistle Thrush flying high north over the valley - does not breed here!

Posted February 5th at 4:46 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Darts Farm to Topsham

At least 5 Pintail pairs, 6 Avocet from the Goat Walk. 5 pairs Shoveler could be more, 2Snipe and so many waders on the incoming tide that were very hard to see on a low sun. 

Posted February 5th at 4:15 pm by John Elvin in Bird News

Baggy Point

early am:- On arrival 3 Red throated Divers + 1 Atlantic Grey Seal.

After searching the surface of the sea we could only find 3 Common Scoters. Several Meadow & Rock Pipits about & one or two skylark singing.

Posted February 5th at 12:56 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Stover Lake

2 male and 1 female Goosander on the lake this morning.

Posted February 5th at 12:27 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Tuesday 4th February 2020

Meeth Quarry

10.30 am 3 Red-creasted Pochard 2M 1F on Woolladon lake and 1M Ring-necked duck from bird hide on Stockleigh lake

Posted February 4th at 4:50 pm by Lynn Noble in Bird News

Radford Lake 04-02-20

Female kingfisher showing very well, a possible sinesis Cormorant, Greenshank, Little Grebes, and a Sparrow hawk above


Posted February 4th at 11:53 am by Greg Bradbury in Bird News

Monday 3rd February 2020

Mandarin at Arlington

I am the chap who spotted the Mandarin at Arlington yesterday Sunday 2nd Feb. First spotted as I entered the again on adjoining lake approx40 mins later.

Posted February 3rd at 7:13 pm by Les Doughty in Bird News

Wrafton etc

3 Red-crested Pochard again, plus drake Pochard, female Goldeneye and a pair of Gadwall along with 50+ Black-headed Gulls on Wrafton Pond this morning. A Dipper in the river. Out on the scrape 2 Swans and 2 Canada Geese (same as yesterday) - both Geese have rings on, so they are the local pair.

In the reserve singing Song Thrush, Great Tit, Cetti's Warbler and Wren. The geese then landed on the pond, did a few circuits and departed. Then the Swans did the same thing. Water Rail seen well.

Posted February 3rd at 4:37 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Brixham - Gillard Road Berry Head

The flock of buntings just out side of the Brixham town at Gillard Road is doing very well in the bird cover crop planted near to the new campsite and playing fields. On Sunday there were:

50+ Yellowhammers, 11 or more Cirl Buntings 18 Chaffinches, 8 Goldfinches and several House Sparrows.


Posted February 3rd at 3:48 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

West Clyst

A female Black Redstart present on rooftops at the end of Hawkins Road, just past the entrance to Houghton Grove at West Clyst near Pinhoe. 1240hrs.

Posted February 3rd at 1:12 pm by Terry Smith in Bird News

Sunday 2nd February 2020


Blue-winged Teal showed well first thing. Female Black Redstart by the coastguard cottages. 

Blue-winged Teal   Black Redstart
Blue-winged Teal                                                        Black Redstart

Posted February 2nd at 9:16 pm by Chris E in Bird News

Mandarin Duck, Arlington?

Can anyone confirm a sighting of a mandarin duck on the lake at Arlington Court today. I met a chap there who said he had seen one but I couldn't find it.

Posted February 2nd at 8:24 pm by alan craddock in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

3 Willow Tit, 1 Marsh Tit, 1m Tufted Duck, 2 Cormorant, 1 Kingfisher, 1 Nuthatch, 1 Grey Heron, 2 Great Crested Grebe,1 Little Grebe.

Posted February 2nd at 8:08 pm by Rod Mudge in Bird News

Hope's Nose


A GND and a Razorbill in Hope Cove.  Male Blackcap close to the entrance gate and at least two more calling from deep cover.  2 Goldcrests.  8 Grey Seals and 2 Harbour Porpoises. 

Posted February 2nd at 7:28 pm by Paul Darlington in Bird News

roadford reservoir

from the viaduct looking north,  the scaup was showing well with three golden eye and tufted ducks, from the other side of the viaduct, a barnacle goose and a snow goose  in with the canada geese .

Posted February 2nd at 4:23 pm by roger jewell in Bird News

Shaugh Lake Quarry

Quick trip this afternoon around Lee Moor Quarry turned up a group of around 13 Tufted Ducks with 1 solitary Female Pochard amongst them, 5 Teal, a couple of Little Grebes and also 1 Coot and 1 Moorhen, two birds i have never seen down in the quarry before.

Posted February 2nd at 4:12 pm by Duncan Leitch in Bird News

Wrafton etc.

3 Red-crested Pochard again this morning plus a drake Pochard.

On the scrape loads of Black-headed Gulls, a pair each of Mute Swan and Canada Geese - couldn't be sure they had rings on, but could be the local breeding pair from the reserve. Also 4 Little Egrets.

In the reserve, 30+ Goldfinch, and a Chiffchaff.

Also of note, a Grey Heron just downstream of the Tesco bridge, right in under the trees.

Posted February 2nd at 2:06 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Torbay Boat Trip

This mornings boat trip from Brixham into Torbay Bay was a fairly good trip with the following birds sighted. 8 Great Northern Diver, 20+ Fulmar, Kittiwake, many Black-headed Gulls, Herring Gull, Great Black-backed Gull and Gannets, 1 Razorbill, 500+ Guillemots on cliffs and in the Bay, 2 Raven and 7 Purple Sandpipers. 2 Grey Seals and 2 Porpoise.  If interested in further trips call Dave on 07970642354.

Posted February 2nd at 1:27 pm by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News

Saturday 1st February 2020


Moving on to Fremington Pill, I met a lovely group of birders who are touring the country to increase their bird count. I spotted a Kingfisher, Little Egret, some cattle Egrets, Redshanks a Spotted Redshank, Glossy Ibis, some m & f Teal and half a dozen Shelduck. 

Glossy Ibis, Little Egret, Greenshank? and RedshankSpotted RedshankGreenshank maybe?
Glossy Ibis, Little Egret, Greenshank and Redshank        Spotted Redshank         Greenshank

Posted February 1st at 11:34 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Wrafton Pond

Again at Wrafton Pond this morning I met fellow birders and spent some time with them photographing the Red crested Pochard, the female Goldeneye, Snipe and a single Little Egret.

Red crested PochardSeven SnipeLittle Egret in the field adjacent to Wrafton Pond
Red crested Pochard                    Seven Snipe           Little Egret in the field adjacent to Wrafton Pond

Posted February 1st at 11:05 pm by Martin Bennett in Bird News

Roadford Lake

Male Greater Scaup with Tufted flock. Viewed from the viaduct. At least 4 Goldeneye also around. 

Greater Scaup and Tufted Ducks  Greater Scaup and Tufted Ducks  Male Goldeneye
Greater Scaup and Tufted Ducks             Greater Scaup and Tufted Ducks                Male Goldeneye

Posted February 1st at 5:00 pm by Chris E in Bird News

Mansands & Broadsands

Mansands ~ The Blue Winged Teal seen briefly as it disappeared into the reed bed at the bottom end of the marsh, other duck species included Teal, Gadwall (4) Tufted and Mallard. Snipe (3) numerous Moorhen and several Coot, Water Rail calling as was more than one Cetti’s Warbler. Raven overhead, two soaring Buzzard, a Skylark singing in the distance.

Out at sea five Great Crested Grebe.

Around the Coastguard cottages a female Black Redstart, Grey and Pied Wagtail, Chiffchaff, Wren, Dunnock and a Tortoiseshell butterfly

Around the hide feeders, five Bullfinch 4M & 1F and a fly past Goldcrest.

Windy Corner ~ Kestrel.

Broadsands ~ Cirl Bunting and a Firecrest in the car parks, on the beach marsh one and possibly two Siberian Chiffchaff, one showing really well and the other just flew through, one Reed Bunting and three Wren, Raven overhead.

A385 Longcombe three soaring Buzzard.

Back home at South Brent a flock of 42 plus Redwing, the “Italian” Sparrow sp on the garden feeders.

Posted February 1st at 4:53 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Plym estuary / Saltram

This morning's high tide roost:  292 Dunlin, 202 Redshank, 180 Herring Gull, 53 Curlew, 34 Shelduck, 13 Wigeon (6m, 7f), 13 Common gull, 7 Little Egret, 6 Grey Heron, 5 Cormorant with white breeding patch, 3 Greenshank.

On the river:  8 Goosander (4m, 4f), 4 Red Breasted Merganser (2m, 2f), 3 Little Grebe, 2 Great Northern Diver, 1 Common Sandpiper.  Around Saltram:  4 Ring Necked Parakeet, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 1 Sparrowhawk.

Posted February 1st at 2:26 pm by Alan Livsey in Bird News

Mansands And Broadsands Fri 31st Jan

The Blue-winged Teal 1st wint Male, showed well for an hour from 10am. Also 17 Teal, 4 Gadwall and 3 Snipe there. At Broadsands one Great Northern Diver, and 8 Cirl Buntings and a male Yellowhammer on seed. Later in day a quick look at Cockwood steps with 29 Bar-tailed Godwits and 2 Goldeneye (m & f).

Posted February 1st at 7:38 am by Steve Cox in Bird News

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