General Birding

2019 Descriptions still outstanding

Many thanks to all observers that submitted their records for 2019. However there are still a number of records that require descriptions before they can appear in the Bird Report.

If you were fortunate enough to find (or see) any of these birds below please could you submit a description to the County Recorder Many thanks, stay safe.

Alpine Swift, Dawlish 11 Jun  Hooded Crow, Baggy Point 10 May
Barred Warbler, Thurlestone 30 Aug Long-tailed Skua, Dawlish Warren 11 Oct
Caspian Gull, Thurlestone, 08 Feb Purple Heron, Slapton Ley 07 May
Caspian Gull, Topsham 02 Aug Sabine's Gull, Thurlestone 14 Aug
Cory's Shearwater, Berry Head 19 Jul Serin (2), Harrowbeer 19 Apr
Glossy Ibis, Otter Est 11-13 Mar Tree Sparrow (2), Berry Head 20 Mar


Posted May 2nd at 3:27 pm by Kevin Rylands in General Birding

Coronavirus update - Daily exercise and Bird Hides

Please be aware that in line with Government guidelines on non-essential travel and social distancing, the Devon Birds hides at Beesands, Fernworthy and Roadford, in addition to hides elsewhere in the County including Bowling Green Marsh, Dawlish Warren and Seaton Wetlands are closed until further notice. Whilst some people may be fortunate enough to be within walking/cycling distance of these sites, others should not be making special journeys to visit these areas at this time. Thank you for your co-operation and stay safe.

Please follow NHS guidelines:

Posted April 16th at 12:04 pm by Mike Daniels in General Birding

Sightings page guidelines & rare breeding bird posting restrictions

We welcome contributions from Devon Birds members and the general public. Please follow the guidelines on this page if you have something to post on the blog, remembering to use the relevant subject.

Please post responsibly, never post details of rare breeding, or winter roosts of vulnerable, species. If you are unsure of what to - or not - to post, there are guidelines on the restrictions  here.

Please note:-

1. That Wood Warbler in probable breeding areas should also not now be published

2.  Posts which breach these guidelines may not be published at all. Editors do this job on a voluntary basis and cannot commit to editing out rare breeding bird information in posts which which include wider sightings. Please help us to avoid the need to delete or not admit posts. Thanks.

For help with ID email photos to

Posted January 8th at 9:12 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding


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 General Birding

Sunday 21st July 2013

Black Hole Marsh (near Seaton)

A brief and late evening visit to Black Hole Marsh today proved very worthwhile. A partial summer plumage Ruff flew in at 20:45 (although SW reports that it was also seen earlier in the day) and an adult Little Ringed Plover has now joined the juvenile.

Posted July 21st, 2013 at 11:32 pm by Tim White in General Birding

Bowling green marsh

Watched from the hide 15:25 till 18:10

53+ greenshanks, 152+ dunlin, 2 ringed plover, 1 knot, 51+ little egrets, 29 whimbrel, 344+ curlew, 2 bar tailed godwits, 4 oystercatcher, 200+ black tailed godwits, 160+ redshanks, 700+ black headed gulls included 1 adult Mediterranean Gull, 2 common gulls, 1 sandwich tern 6+ lapwing, 4 wigeon 

Posted July 21st, 2013 at 9:15 pm by Keith Birchall in General Birding

Thurlestone Bay

Highlight of the day ( and month ) was the first July patch record of 3 AVOCET found by Bob B at 06.30 and still present feeding off the rocks at 11.30. . A fine aerial display when a Peregrine took a liking to one of them . Pleased to say the Avocet survived .

Other waders around 8 Dunlin, 20 Sanderling, 3 Whimbrel.. The male Garganey still on the marsh.

Swallow roost at 21.15 last night 1100+ birds


Posted July 21st, 2013 at 5:26 pm by Mike Passman in General Birding

Berry Hd & Broadsands

Berry Hd Seawatching 05.30-07.00hrs: 1 Balearic Shearwater, 8 Manx Shearwaters, 8 Fulmar, 1 Great Skua, 1 Arctic Skua, 1 Med Gull ad, 1 Yellow-legged Gull juv, 22 Kittiwake, 3 Sandwich Tern, 3 Common Scoter. Mixed movement but mostly > south.

Broadsands: 2 Med Gulls both juvs also first juv Lesser Black-backed of the year

Posted July 21st, 2013 at 9:12 am by Mike Langman in General Birding


Mudbank - 0730 - 200+ sand martin feeding over the river.

Seafront - 1 juv yellow-legged gull on the beach by the lifeboat station. Also 1 balearic shearwater offshore plus 15+ common scoter, 1 mediterranean gull and 3 sand martins east.

juv yellow-legged gull
juv yellow-legged gull

Posted July 21st, 2013 at 8:07 am by Matt Knott in General Birding

Saturday 20th July 2013


A juvenile Yellow-legged Gull made a couple of passes off the point early morning, also 4 Med Gulls (3 adults + 1st summer). 16+ Sand Martins amongst a modest gathering of hirundines, and 20+ Swifts. Yesterday, 4 Whimbrel, and old news from last weekend, single juvenile Wheatear, a Cuckoo, and max of 6 Common Sandpipers.

Posted July 20th, 2013 at 9:21 pm by Pat Mayer in General Birding

Bowling green marsh

Watched from the hide 14:00 till 17:35

2 avocets were new in with one with colour rings on, black headed gulls again 1200+ with 2 Mediterranean gulls ( 1 adult, 1 1s) , 2 common gulls, 70+ little egrets, 100+ dunlin, 40+ greenshanks, 160+ redshanks, an early turnstone , 1 knot, 1 bar tailed godwit, 1 green sandpiper, 1 common sandpiper, 250+ black tailed godwits, 10+ whimbrel, 200+ curlew, 4 wigeon

Posted July 20th, 2013 at 9:03 pm by Keith Birchall in General Birding

Friday 19th July 2013


Broadsands 20:00-21:00

Around 150 Herring Gulls, a single juv Yellow-legged Gull, 60+ Black-Headed Gull and 3 Med Gulls (1st sum and 2 2nd sum).

Posted July 19th, 2013 at 9:22 pm by Jacob Wood in General Birding

Bowling green marsh

From the hide 15:20 till 17:00

2 little ringed plover (1 adult and 1 juv), 1200+ black headed gulls, included 3+ Mediterranean gulls 1 adult, 1 1st summer and a juv, 1 knot, 62+ dunlin (5+ juv), 31+ greenshanks, 100+ redshank, 250+ black tailed godwits, 2 bar tailed godwits, 2 common gull, 50+ little egrets, 3 wigeon, 4 shoveler.

Posted July 19th, 2013 at 6:55 pm by Keith Birchall in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh

Watched from the hide at lunchtime until about 2 o'clock. 1 Little Ringed Plover, 1 summer plumaged Knot were the highlights.

Posted July 19th, 2013 at 3:46 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Thursday 18th July 2013

Juv LRP South Huish

1 juvenile little ringed plover on the marsh at South Huish this evening 7 pm. Water levels dropping quickly.

Posted July 18th, 2013 at 9:28 pm by Richard Archer in General Birding


Orcombe Point - 1945 - 2015 - a quick look out to see while the kids played on the beach produced a single balearic shearwater south at 8pm. Also 1 mediterranean gull and 3 good sized scoter flocks. The largest black distant 'mass' of birds must have contained 200+ birds and was well over towards Torbay.

14/7 - Mudbank - 9 mediterranean gulls, 13+ whimbrel, 11 dunlin and 2 great crested grebe.

Posted July 18th, 2013 at 8:56 pm by Matt Knott in General Birding

Clennon Valley

Masses of gulls on and over the fields tonight feeding on flying queen ants. Among the Herring, Lesser Black-backed and Black-headed Gulls was a juv Yellow-legged Gull and a single ad Med Gull.

Yellow-legged Gull Clennon Valley 18 Jul 13 ML Yellow-legged Gull Clennon Valley 18 Jul 13 ML2

Photos: Juv Yellow-legged Gull. 

Posted July 18th, 2013 at 8:11 pm by Mike Langman in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh

In the hide today until about 2.40pm. 2 adult Mediterranean Gulls in amongst the Black-headeds. Also one of 2 Lesser Black-backeds had a green ring with BN on its right leg - I'll try nad find out where this has come from. More surprising was a Yellow Wagtail on the edge of the reeds with 3 Pied Wagtails.

Posted July 18th, 2013 at 3:03 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Wednesday 17th July 2013

Around the Axe

Early this morning juvenile Little Ringed Plover still on Black Hole Marsh with 12 Dunlin, 10 Black-tailed Godwit, 8 Common Sands and 2 Whimbrel.

This afternoon, finally managed a juv Yellow-legged Gull on the estuary amongst the biggest gathering of large Gulls I've seen for months. Also 2 Lesser Black-backed Gulls.  From 4pm a half hour sea watch showed 5 Med Gulls west.

Little Ringed Plover
Little Ringed Plover

Posted July 17th, 2013 at 5:38 pm by Steve Waite in General Birding


Minimum of 150 Ravens in cattle field with assorted other corvids. Amazing spectacle and noise when they all took to the air calling. Most I've ever seen together by a long way!

Posted July 17th, 2013 at 5:03 pm by Rob Macklin in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh

From the hide until about 1.10 (just before high tide). Little Egrets numbered 67 with a number only viewable when I had left the hide. 3 adult Mediterranean Gulls, 31 Dunlin, 3 Oystercatchers, 1 Common Gull. Brief visit to the platform saw good numbers of Greenshank and 1 Sandwich Tern flying over.

Posted July 17th, 2013 at 1:33 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Tuesday 16th July 2013

Crab Ledge (Otterton Sewage Works)

At least 300 Common Scoter seen from Crab Ledge this afternoon at 17.45.

Posted July 16th, 2013 at 9:22 pm by Douglas Cullen in General Birding

Burrator Reservoir sightings

Joined the path from Cadover bridge and went through the plantations , 10+ Crossbill ,1 Willow warbler ( singing ) Then on up onto the fern fields, 2+ Meadow pipit , 1 Stonechat ,3 Song thrushes, 1 Wheatear , 10+ Linnet . Unfortunately no cuckoos

Posted July 16th, 2013 at 6:59 pm by Matt Clark in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh

Lunchtime visit again until about 1.15. Little Egrets up to an impressive 74 today. 4 adult Mediterranean Gulls, 34 Dunlin, 5 Oystercatchers, 1 Whimbrel, 20+ Greenshank.

Posted July 16th, 2013 at 1:33 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Monday 15th July 2013

Around the Axe

Crossbill heard again from west side of Seaton this morning.

A brief sea watch from Seaton showed singles of Manx Shearwater (w) and Med Gull (e) with two Sandwich Tern fishing and two Common Scoter on the sea.

Black Hole Marsh mid morning gave; 12 Black-tailed Godwit, 9 Dunlin, 8 Common Sands, 5 Lapwing, 2 Greenshank, 1 Green Sand and 1 Whimbrel. On the Estuary already 16 independant juvenile Herring Gulls, and still no Yellow-legged!

Edit  -  Also, yesterday evening (Sunday) on BHM: 1 juv LRP and a 2nd-summer Med Gull (GMH)

Posted July 15th, 2013 at 2:25 pm by Steve Waite in General Birding

Passage House, Teign Estuary

Wader numbers increasing now. Yesterday there were 11 Common Sandpipers, 86 Curlew, 2 Greenshanks, a Black-tailed Godwit and a Med Gull, and today there were 4 Dunlin, a Water Rail, 8 Whimbrel and a Sanderling (a rare sight at Passage House)

I also spoke to a local man today who told me he had seen a CATTLE EGRET last Thursday on the side of the river near Aller Brook.

Posted July 15th, 2013 at 1:55 pm by Laurie Allnatt in General Birding


1 Lapwing on the R.Caen this morning.

192 Black headed Gulls inc 13 juveniles.

11 Med Gulls

Posted July 15th, 2013 at 1:51 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh

Lunchtime visit to the hide until about 1.10pm. Good numbers of Black-headed Gulls, with 4 Mediterranean Gulls (3 adult, 1 1st summer) and 1 Common Gull. Best count of Little Egrets was 69. 24 Dunlin, 20+ Greenshank and 4+ Whimbrel.

Posted July 15th, 2013 at 1:29 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

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