A Big(ish) Day out

Andy Swash and I did a 'Big(gish) Day' yesterday, recording 113 species. Highlights included:

  • Cuckoo and Whinchat around Warren House (we didn't make it pre-dawn to listen for Red Grouse!)
  • Spotted Flycatchers and Redstarts at Bellever and Challacombe, with Garden Warbler at the latter
  • Snipe at Halshanger Bog, Tree Pipit at Haytor and Dipper on the Bovey
  • Great Crested Grebe and Tufted Duck at Hennock Reservoirs (but no sign of the Goosander present the day before)
  • Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Pied Flycatcher, Wood Warbler, Marsh Tit and Mandarin Ducks at Yarner
  • Tree Pipit, Garden Warbler and Redpoll at Trendlebere
  • Gadwall, Lapwing, Lesser Whitethroat and Hobby at Exminster/Powderham Marshes (there had been 9 Hobbies and a Spoonbill there in the morning)
  • Red-legged Partridges at Kenton and Starcross
  • Slavonian Grebe on the Exe at Cockwood
  • Little Grebe and a good number of waders at Dawlish Warren, including lots of Whimbrel and Sanderlings and a male Kentish Plover in a mixed flock that appeared to come in off the sea, circled a few times and then flew off high over Exmouth not to return! Brent Goose in the estuary, but very poor offshore apart from 4 Common Scoters
  • At Bowling Green we arrived in time to see the Ruff, terns and other waders described by Keith
  • Finally Nightjars put on a good display at Stover (2 males and a female), with other males churring just outside the Park and later at Chudleigh Knighton Heath.


We also came across several Pearl-bordered Fritillaries (Yarner and Hennock), Scarce Chaser (Exminster) and Weasel (near Dawlish Warren) on a beautiful warm day. Despite some silly misses and another 20 species that we could easily happened upon, it was an extremely good day out!

Posted May 16th, 2014 at 11:38 am by Dave Smallshire in Bird News