Devon Bird Sightings: Bird News from 22nd–30th September 2013

2020 Records request

If you saw any of the records below please submit a description to the County Recorder 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


In the light of the continuing Covid19 restrictions on the number of people gathering together, and the need for social distancing, it has been agreed that there will be no Devon Birds meetings or events organised until 19th July 2021, when Government restrictions are planned to be lifted. If there is any Government announcement that necessitates a change to this date an update will be posted.

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

Think before you post...!


Please think very carefully before posting any information on scarce or rare breeding species both here and elsewhere online.

A list of ‘at risk’ species in the county can be found here. Please note that Wood Warbler should now also be treated as on the list. All species included need to be protected - many receive full legal protection under Schedule 1 and/or are rare in the county and may be vulnerable to persecution/disturbance. It is an offence to intentionally disturb any of the Schedule 1 species during the breeding season without a valid licence. This also applies to anyone taking photographs of these species at or near the nest or whilst feeding dependant young.

Some species may be found breeding at numerous locations however please keep information on these species limited to well-known sites (e.g. Labrador Bay for Cirl Bunting, Aylesbeare Common for Dartford Warbler). Others may be found as obvious migrants and as such can also be posted eg coastal Ring Ouzel and passage waders, or raptors eg Little Ringed PloverRed Kite or Marsh Harrier.

If you have any doubts and think there is a chance there may be breeding, either because of the habitat or behaviour of the bird(s) then do not post, but please submit your records to the County Recorder and the RSPB.

Please be aware that egg collecting and other forms of persecution remain very real hazards for some of Devon’s birds.

Posts which breach these guidelines are likely to be not admitted / removed althogether, rather than edited.  


Posted March 15th at 11:56 am by Mike Langman in Bird News


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

Monday 30th September 2013

Re: Penhill Goose hybrid

Looks quite similar to a bird in Norfolk thought to be Emperor x Ross's Goose, see this intersting discussion:

Posted September 30th, 2013 at 9:06 pm by Richard Thomas in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 15:15 till 18:00

on the walk down to the hide a hobby flew through scattering a large group of house martins and swallows, from the hide 3 juv little stints, 1 juv curlew sandpiper, 3 spotted redshank( 2 juv, 1 adult), 2 juv ruff, 7 ringed plover, 500+ curlew, 550+ black tailed godwits, avocet numbers continue to rise with 24+, 52+ bar tailed godwits, 24+ knot, 41+ little egrets, 22+ greenshanks, 31+ lapwing, 260+ Redshanks, a sparrowhawk took a dunlin, 120+ dunlin, 2+ whimbrel, 1 green sandpiper.

a quick look from the viewing platform produced 3 juv curlew sandpipers, 1 snipe, 4 grey plover and 6+ chiffchaffs. 


Posted September 30th, 2013 at 8:30 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Penhill Goose hybrid.

This appears to be the same bird as in July 2012. It`s been on the river with the Canada Geese for quite a few weeks now. No one offered any suggestions as to what it might have been back in 2012. Because of it`s size, size and shape of head and beak colour, together with the plumage I believe it to be a Barnacle/Ross` Goose hybrid. I stand to be corrected.

Posted September 30th, 2013 at 6:47 pm by Maurice Clements in Bird News


08:40-17:00; Furzedown/Hgr. Soar/ East Soar/Starehole/Bolt Head/ Warren/ Hgr. Soar/Furzedown.

Fog soon clearing, Light east wind, warm.

Merlin, 3 Golden Plover, Snipe, 100 Skylark, 400 Meadow Pipit, 4 Yellow Wagtail, 150 Swallow, 5 House Martin, 3 Whinchat ( together at Furzedown ), Black Redstart ( East Soar Farm ), 2 Redstart, 11 Wheatear, 12 Blackcap, 3 Whitethroat, 45 Chiffchaff, Yellow-browed Warbler, 200 Linnet and 3 Siskin.

Bumped into Eric W. midday, he had seen a Short-eared Owl on the Warren earlier.

The Yellow-browed was near the top of the sheeptrack on the east side of Starehole Valley. Unfortunatly it was out of view but called about 30 times in 5 minutes before going quiet. Waited and tried to pish it out for about 30 minutes but it fell silent, presumably had moved on. Could never tire of seeing Yellow-broweds ( or even just hearing them ! )  but its amazing how they are expected in autumn now, can't remember the last time i saw a Turtle Dove locally in autumn - how things change.

Posted September 30th, 2013 at 6:40 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Glossy Ibis - Horsey Island

One more photo of the Glossy Ibis which for some reason did not post the first time!

Posted September 30th, 2013 at 6:10 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Glossy Ibis - Horsey Island

This bird was briefly on Horsey Island at 16.30 this afternoon

& I only had a couple of minutes to digiscope it before it flew

north over Braunton Marshes then east towards Barnstaple.

Keep your eyes wide open folks, you may see it again.

Posted September 30th, 2013 at 6:02 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Kingsbridge Estuary

Numbers of wildfowl & waders beginning to build up with 26 Little Egret, 6 Egyptian Geese, 1st Brent Goose of the autumn, 370 Wigeon, 75 Teal, 298 Mallard, 9 Pintail - again 1st of autumn for me, 104 Oystercatcher, 240 Curlew, 86 Redshank, 11 Greenshank, 26 Med Gull at Salcombe, 1070 Black-headed Gull and a neat flock of 26 Cirl Bunting along the north edge of Frogmore Creek. Also a steady stream of hirindines throughout the day,mostly Swallows.

Posted September 30th, 2013 at 4:37 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Penhill Point - Taw Estuary

George Mudford sent me these photos he took yesterday from Penhill Point on the Taw Estuary.

The smaller goose is similar to the one that Maurice spotted & was around in July 2012.

It would be interesting to know what the Geese experts amongst you have to say about this bird.

I digiscoped the one in July 2012, so if you need the photo for comparison let me know or you may have it already!

Posted September 30th, 2013 at 3:08 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Berry Hd

Around the headland today: 3 Spotted Flycatchers, 3-4 Wheatear, 1 Willow Warbler, 22 Chiffchaff, 6 Blackcap, 1 Goldcrest, 4 Stonechat. at sea very quiet but first 4 Common Gulls (for me) of the autumn at the Head, 16 Wigeon and 1 Sandwich Tern.

Overhead: 8 Siskin, 86 Swallow, 2 'alba' Wagtails, 1 Grey Wagtail, 37 Meadow Pipits, 70 Goldfinch, 52 Linnet, 3 Chaffinch.

Posted September 30th, 2013 at 2:14 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

Visit to the hide over lunchtime until 1.50. Lower numbers of birds but still good quality. Amongst the waders were 2 Little Stints, 1 Spotted Redshank, 1 Ruff and 4 Knot.

Posted September 30th, 2013 at 2:05 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Berry Hd

Sunday 29th: Brief Seawatch first thing;1 Balearic Shearwater, 9 Sandwich Terns, 2 Common Terns, 1 Mediterranean Gull (2ndw):

Overhead: 2 Hobbies>E, 1,000+ Swallows 8.30 - 13.30 >E, 9 House Martins, 47 Meadow Pipits, 1 Tree Pipit.

Around headland: 35 Chiffchaff, 1 Willow Warbler, 2 Blackcap, 1 Whitethroat, 3 Stonechat.

Posted September 30th, 2013 at 7:49 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Sunday 29th September 2013

Around topsham

Watched from 10:15 till 16:45

started at topsham quay and soon found 3 spotted redshank (2 juv, 1 adult) between the quay and the goatwalk, from the goatwalk 935+ black tailed godwits and 1 knot. 

From the viewing platform at bowling green marsh 15 avocet, 6 grey plover and a water rail all showed well.

moved onto the hide 12:00 till 14:00 but fairly quiet with the low high tide but still good with 2 juv little stints, 3 spotted redshanks, 1 juv ruff , 1 green sandpiper,  17 knot, 25+ little eegret.

Back to the viewing platform at least 1 juv curlew sandpiper among 120+ dunlin a nice find was a Osprey just before 15:00 fishing between powderham and Lympstone, just as we were leaving a large group of 50+ long tailed tits, blue tits, great tits  and chiffchaffs appeared one warbler stood out it had a bright eye ring no supercilium dusky back and bright underneath only brief glimpses obtained by the viewing platform before being lost to view despite searching for an hour unable to refind it one which got away. 

still a good around topsham 

Posted September 29th, 2013 at 9:24 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News


Orcombe Point - heaving with birds today with some nice variety. It was nice to see my first two redwing of the autumn heading east. Also1 turnstone, 2 juv ringed plover, 1 dunlin, fw mediterranean gull, fw common gull, 4 golden plover, c20+ alba wagtail, 1 flava wagtail sp (flew out of turnip field with repeated hoarse 'zreep' then gave normal yellow wag flight call), 1 white wagtail, c30+ goldfinch, c10+ chaffinch, 3 wheatear, 1 juv whinchat, 1 stonechat, c15+ chiffchaff, c200+ meadow pipit, 1 tree pipit, 1+ juv hobby hunting the area, c20+ skylark, 3 grey wagtail, c30+ starling, c60+ linnet, 1 goldcrest, 1 spotted flycatcher, 1+ siskin and 1+ whitethroat. Hirundine passage picked up mid morning with c60+ house martin and loads of swallows all east but no proper count was made.

meadow pipit
meadow pipit

white wagtail
white wagtail

tree pipit
tree pipit

Posted September 29th, 2013 at 7:16 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

Start Point

James and I birded the lane by the farm from 09.00 to 10.00 then had a seawatch from the point from 10.30 to 11.30 then I checked the farm again from 12.15 to 13.00. A fresh ENE felt "full of eastern promise' and fog masking the horizon and mast tops cleared towards the end but only a modest list of migrants was forthcoming: Gannet (c.30 W but c.20 E.), Kittiwake (2 ad.s and 2 juv.s E.), Hobby (1 juv. harried swallows over the farm briefly heading S. with them), Barn Swallow (maybe 100 S. throughout with 3-4 parties of c.10 birds heading out low over the waves), Wheatear (4 juv.s by the light), Redwing (2 in sycamores by the farm seemed early), Blackcap (1-2 calling by the farm), Chiffchaff (10-15 by the farm (incl. a very grey bird with greenish remiges looking like tristis but presumed abietinus as it called "normally") had all cleared out by midday), Spotted Flycatcher (1 ad. and 1 slightly spotty 1st w. by the farm early on, poss. the same 1st w. by the light at 11.45, none at the farm later)   

Posted September 29th, 2013 at 7:14 pm by Steve Young in Bird News

Slapton Ley

Two Hobbies feeding over Ireland Bay this afternoon. Most of the phylloscs, Blackcaps and Sedge Warblers that were around the Ley over the last week have departed so fairly quiet. Duck numbers building, Wheatear on the beach.

Posted September 29th, 2013 at 6:50 pm by David Cope in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

A single Knot roosting amongst the 128 Redshanks on the estuary wall at the top of the river and 2 Bar-tailed Godwits were the best waders; also - 4 Greenshanks, 9 Turnstones, 4 Dunlins, 43 Curlews, just 1 Common Sandpiper and 2 Ringed Plovers. Little Egrets up to 15 and my first Little Grebes of the autumn - a party of 4 on the narrow river. 

An adult Mediterranean Gull in winter plumage showed well and the visit was rounded off with 5 Wheatears and 2 Red-legged Partridges.  

Posted September 29th, 2013 at 3:51 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News


Tawny Pipit 1W? Potato field behind Mid Soar Fm. moving East nr Potato Trailers with Mipits and 6 Wheatear.

Posted September 29th, 2013 at 3:45 pm by Alan Doidge in Bird News

Saturday 28th September 2013

Berry Head and Shoalstone car park, Brixham

Berry Hd 0930 -1000hrs - over 450 Swallows passing NE over the head but very little else and nothing moving at sea.

1500-1530hrs; just as rain started to clear, fromShoalstone car park shelter: 1 Little Gull (Adult), 2 Arctic Skuas, 1 Great Skua, 4 Balearic Shearwaters, 17 Sandwich Tern, 1 Red-throated Diver (sum plum). 1 Bottle-nosed Dolphin just off shore (with a notch missing from top of dorsal fin).

The Glossy Ibis was still just south of Galmpton Village at 1545hrs

Posted September 28th, 2013 at 9:33 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News


Little to write home about this morning but an Osprey was seen from Ernesettle Marsh heading down The Tamar at 08.30.

Posted September 28th, 2013 at 9:17 pm by Roy McCarthy in Bird News

Prawle Point Seawatch

Spectacular sheet lightning en route to East Prawle ,with the village weather cock showing NE , today’s seawatch would either be a wash-out ,literally, or interesting, as with any easterly flow birds can appear. So John and Pat and myself spent 8 hours from 7am. Quantity was provided by Gannets (260 east) and Gulls (mostly easterly passage : GBB-265;LBB-310;HG-c400;BH-12; CG-2) But also 1juv Yellow Legged Gull  and 5 Med Gulls (1st w,2nd w and adult)

Our first 4 Brent Geese this autumn flew east.  Ducks came in the shape of : 15 Wigeon,7 Teal,2 Tufted,2 Common Scoter, plus c 20 Duck sp just as we were leaving.  After an earlier solitary Curlew , the wader highlight was 4 Black Tailed Godwit east . And to ensure shearwater sp. were included there were 6 Balearic speeding in a westerly direction. Tern species : 4 Sandwich and 4 x 1st yr Arctic and 7 x adult Arctic Terns , all east.

Bird of the day  ? Well it has to have been the adult female Marsh Harrier that appeared to fly out to sea at 11.20 and then thought better of it !

Posted September 28th, 2013 at 7:56 pm in Bird News

Wrafton Pond.

A brief look this afternoon showed that a pair of Gadwall have returned, along with at least 2 Teal and a Wigeon. In recent days Kingfisher, Grey Wagtail and Dipper under the bridge to the reserve, where not very much on show - a couple of Chiffchaffs.

Posted September 28th, 2013 at 7:35 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

 Miserable wet and windy day until 15.00  resulted in some duck and wader passage .

Bay watched 09.00-13.00 and 16.00- 1745 totals were .-

2 Sandwich Tern , 1 Brent Goose , 17 Teal, 24 Wigeon ,9 Pintail ( all on sea ) 1 Common Scoter,  waders flying through - 1 Grey Plover, 1 Curlew Sandpiper, 1 Spotted Redshank, 4 Bar Tailed Godwit 10 Dunlin , also 2 Med Gull. 

On South Huish marsh - 75 Teal, 2 Wigeon, 4 Dunlin , 3 Snipe, 1 Little Stint , Hobby, 4 Wheatear

Posted September 28th, 2013 at 6:55 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

Brief visit late afternoon after the rain had stopped. Water levels rising and the first shallow pools emerging. On the pool near the canal car park were 4 lapwing, 1 ruff (juv), 2 wigeon and 16 teal. On the lagoon 3 gadwall, at least 4 little grebe, 1 snipe and c10 coot. A kingfisher flew down the canal. About 50 swallows feeding over the fields.

Posted September 28th, 2013 at 6:45 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Bassett's Ridge - Taw Estuary

16.30 - 18.00

2 Spoonbills actively searching for food in a narrow shallow tidal channel at low tide. No rings visible through the scope so now 4 Spoonbills on the Taw Estuary providing the 2 ringed birds are still around.

One Ruff present, 16 Knot & an increase in the Pintail

numbers - now 44.

Posted September 28th, 2013 at 6:32 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 10:25 till 14:00

1 juv little stint, 1 juv ruff, 4 spotted redshank (1 adult, 3 juv), 5 ringed plover, 1 green sandpiper, 1 peregrine, 500+ black tailed godwits, 17+ greenshanks, 13+ bar tailed godwits, 1 water rail, 180+ teal, 80+ wigeon  all from the hide 

A hobby was around the viewing platform and 3 avocet on the clyst on the walk back into topsham a grass  snake. 


Posted September 28th, 2013 at 4:09 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

East Soar

A short and coffee orientated visit to East Soar with Pete Aley and Eric. A few bits before the rain settled in. Swallow 500+, 8+ Chiffchaff, 2 Whinchat, 2 Yellow Wagtail & a Spotted Flycatcher was about it. Nice coffee though. 

Posted September 28th, 2013 at 2:29 pm by Steve Cox in Bird News

Berry Head & Galmpton

Berry Head. Seawatch from 10:30-12:45. 10 Balearic Shearwater(S),4 Common Tern(S) and 3 Common Scotor(N). Also huge number of Swallows heading south.

Galmpton. The Glossy Ibis was still present in the field viewable from Greenway park today at 13:15 when I left.

Posted September 28th, 2013 at 1:53 pm by Jacob Wood in Bird News

Friday 27th September 2013

Axe Estuary

Tim Wright found a Bittern early afternoon today. It was on the Axe Estuary and viewable from Tower Hide but had wondered a bit further away by the time I got there. Although distant, the bird was remarkably showy. Also 7 Bar Tailed Godwit on the Estuary and a Little Stint on Black Hole Marsh.

Posted September 27th, 2013 at 11:50 pm by Tim White in Bird News

Golden Plover ~ South Brent

A bit later in posting but late yesterday afternoon a flock of some 20 Golden Plover were seen from home flying towards the Plymouth direction along the A38 valley at South Brent

Posted September 27th, 2013 at 8:17 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Bassett's Ridge -Taw Estuary

16.00 > 15 Pintail feeding & 5 Knot

Posted September 27th, 2013 at 7:34 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Berry Hd & Galmpton

Around Headland: 1 Pied Flycatcher, 25 Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcap.

Galmpton: the juv Glossy Ibis was still present this afternoon at 3.30pm.. better photo than last night.

Glossy Ibis Galmpton 27 Sept 2013 ML

Posted September 27th, 2013 at 4:05 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

Lunchtime visit to the hide until about 1.55. Wader highlights were 2 Ruff and 1 Spotted Redshank.

Posted September 27th, 2013 at 2:24 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

R.Taw. Pottington to Ashford.

10:50 - 12:35

21 Bar-tailed Godwits; 5 Black-tailed Godwits; 6 Little Egrets; 8 Greenshank; 1 Great crested Grebe (juv) and 1 Shoveler on foreshore.

Penhill Marsh viewed from Pottington side :- 9 Grey Herons; 4 Little Egrets and 9 Shoveler mid-river. 2 Peregrines on a sandbar in mid-river. 1 was protecting a kill it had made from the attentions of 3 pestering Crows. The 2nd Peregrine was on the same sandbar and allowing the incoming tide to come up to it`s belly before it moved to dry sand. First time I have ever witnessed a wading Peregrine.

At 11:50 all the Gulls and waders on the river suddenly took to the skies and I caught a fleeting glimpse of what appeared to be a Marsh Harrier flying overhead and upstream between the Tarka Trail and the foreshore. Before I could get a decent bead on it, it had flown inland towards Bradiford Reserve.

3 Pintail flying upstream just off Ashford Sewage Works.

Posted September 27th, 2013 at 2:24 pm by Maurice Clements in Bird News

Exmouth LNR

Wildfowl numbrs building up nicely.    As to-days neap high tide receeded, there were 345 Brent Geese which moved onto the eel-grass beds to feed close in to the shoreline off Imperial Recreation Ground.

Offshore Mudbank there was a very large raft of Wigeon - estimate at  around 1400 - plus at least 50 Pintail.

Posted September 27th, 2013 at 1:25 pm by Rupert Ormerod in Bird News

Shoalstone, Brixham

Sea watch for a hour from the shelter at the carpark, 0845 - 0945hrs: 31 Sandwich Terns, 4 Balearic Shearwater, 6 Kittiwake and a Bonxie. No sign of the Glossy Ibis in the field off Greenway Park at 10.15am but was reported earlier this morning on Birdguides.

Posted September 27th, 2013 at 10:25 am by Bill Macdonald in Bird News

Thursday 26th September 2013

Galmpton, Torbay

Thanks to a call from Steph Murphy a few of the locals caught up with a Glossy Ibis in a field just SE of Galmpton Village probably best viewed from Kennel Lane just south of the village on the Greenway Road. Presumably the Mansands bird.

  Glossy Ibis Galmptn 260913 ML1 Glossy Ibis Galmptn 260913 ML1

Posted September 26th, 2013 at 9:08 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Berry Hd

Lunchtime visit produced: 1 Firecrest (my first of autumn) in sycamores at bottom of quarry, 12 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap.

Posted September 26th, 2013 at 2:23 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News


This is the very poor picture of the Glossy Ibis that was at Mansands still this morning when I arrived at 7.30am. From the hide, it was feeding at its favoured pool again. After about 15 minutes or so, the local Grey Heron came to the pool and the Ibis flew further down the marsh, then eventually went onto the beach, I walked down to the beach, but couldn’t find it again. Just wonder if this is one of the South Huish birds or not! Also a Water Rail was running around on the marsh.

Posted September 26th, 2013 at 1:27 pm by Paul Albrechtsen in Bird News

Mansands Glossy Ibis

Reported as back again, by our customer, who is Nat. Trust warden there

Posted September 26th, 2013 at 1:03 pm by Trevor Leaman in Bird News

Wednesday 25th September 2013

Plymouth "Hazzard"

My first sighting of one of the  Harris Hawk / Common Buzzard hybrid youngsters, this bird was in moult which would indicate that at least a second year bird. The mature hybrids have a distinct white eyebrow while the first year young have a pale goldish coloured eye brow marking.

Posted September 25th, 2013 at 10:45 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News


No sign of the Glossy Ibis this evening from 6.30-7.30pm

Posted September 25th, 2013 at 8:21 pm by Mark Bailey in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake Red-necked Grebe

The Red-necked Grebe still showing well on Lower Tamar Lake this morning (10:00 - 12:00).

Posted September 25th, 2013 at 6:44 pm by Tom Martin in Bird News

Prawle Point

PMM's juv. RC Starling found this morning at Prawle Pt.  Relocated in Prawle Village on wires behind 'the Green/Piglet Stores' with Starlings 1500hrs 

Posted September 25th, 2013 at 5:28 pm by Alan Doidge in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

!225 Red necked grebe still showing well.  Eight great crested grebes and two tufted duck with single swallow overhead.

Juvenile red necked grebe
Juvenile red necked grebe

Juv red necked grebe
Juv red necked grebe

Posted September 25th, 2013 at 3:44 pm by Tony Brooking in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

Visit to the hide this lunchtime until about 1.50. Good numbers of waders including 1 Spotted Redshank. A Peregrine, possibly a juvenile made several unsuccessful attempts to catch a small wader before heading away towards Darts Farm.

Posted September 25th, 2013 at 2:42 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Mansands marsh

Glossy Ibis on pool near track just passed bird hide. Seen at lunch time today

Posted September 25th, 2013 at 2:10 pm by Tim Bumby in Bird News

Clennon Valley

Mid-morning stroll around site produced little in the way of migrants but did hear my first Water Rails (2) on site this autumn also: 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap, 4 Little Grebe,1 Shoveler, 2 Kingfisher.

Posted September 25th, 2013 at 1:58 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Instow, Taw/Torridge Est.

32 Mediterranean Gulls; 1 Common Gull; 16 Ringed Plover and 4 Little Egrets.

One of the Meds was carrying a white ring with black alpha/numerics on lower left leg.( French/Belgian or Dutch.) 2 others were carrying metal i/d rings.

31 Pied wagtails on the cricket ground.

Posted September 25th, 2013 at 11:45 am by Maurice Clements in Bird News

Venn by Aveton Gifford

In response to Tony's comments re swallows at Prawle, several hundred streamed through south over my garden in mid-afternoon yesterday. A few house martins too.

Posted September 25th, 2013 at 10:25 am by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Tuesday 24th September 2013

Taw Estuary - Pottington

The photos that George took from top to bottom

Juv Great Crested Grebe in flight.

Bar tailed Godwit

Bar tailed Godwit & Curlew

Posted September 24th, 2013 at 10:03 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Velator reserve

Arrived at first light for a ringing session (full details on the forum) The resident Tawny Owls both calling. Heard a Chiffchaff singing, and ringed two. Biggest surprise was catching a first year BUZZARD - undoubtedly one of the two which fledged in the reserve this summer.

Posted September 24th, 2013 at 7:42 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News


With blue sky and sunshine ,pretty quiet at Prawle this morning though I did see my first Goldcrest of the  autumn . But only 1 Willow Warbler,8 Chiffchaffs, 5 Whitethroats, 4 Blackcaps,8 Wheatears, 1 Ringed Plover and 3 Turnstone. But then at 12 ish  over 250  hirundines flew over the car park/bunkers and later ,at 1.30pm, whilst in Pig's Nose valley I sat down and counted 1000 plus hirundiines-mainly Swallows, then House Martins and a few Sand Martins  in just half an hour ! Terrific sight as they flew right past me. I gave up counting as I had to leave . Did anyone else count the hirundines through South Hams today ?

Posted September 24th, 2013 at 6:36 pm in Bird News

Taw Estuary - Pottington

George Mudford sent me these photos he took yesterday

on the Taw Estuary at Pottington.

               Juv Great Crested Grebe

              bar-tailed Godwit

              Curlew and bar-tailed Godwit

Posted September 24th, 2013 at 5:42 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake - Tuesday PM

Lower Tamar Lake.

Juv. Red necked Grebe showing well still.   9 Great Crested Grebes and 14 Coot etc.

Harvey Kendall

Posted September 24th, 2013 at 3:43 pm by Harvey Kendall in Bird News

Berry Hd

Around the headland this am: 6 Blackcap, 21 Chiffchaff, 1 Goldcrest, 2 Willow Warbler, 4 Stonechat. Overhead: 2 Grey Wagtails, 6 'Alba' Wagtails, 5 Siskin, 22 Linnet, 27 Goldfinch 2 House Sparrow, 2 Chaffinch.

Yesterday - 23 Sep: 145 (mostly) Swallows, 3 'alba' Wagtails, 31 Meadow Pipits, 14 Chiffchaff. Seawatching 10.30-11.30Hrs: 5 Great Skua, 6 Balearic Shearwaters, 4 Arctic Tern, 1 Common Tern, 5 Sandwich Tern, 1 'Commic' Tern, 1 unident Tern, 21 Razorbills, 5 Guillemot, 1 Puffin &, 1 Common Scoter,   

Posted September 24th, 2013 at 2:09 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Monday 23rd September 2013

Instow rocks/cricket ground

81 med gulls, 71 ads, 6 sw, 4 juv/fw.


Posted September 23rd, 2013 at 9:36 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Otter Estuary

I was hoping for a repeat of 2010 on the patch, following the apparent Glossy Ibis influx, but sadly the scrapes adjacent to the otter are still bone dry - A female/imm Garganey was a pleasant surprise though (visible from hide on the east side of Otter). Otherwise the usual suspects around the Otter......

Posted September 23rd, 2013 at 9:13 pm by Chris Townend in Bird News

East Soar, Soar Mill Cove & Southdown Farm

A six hour trek provided scant reward but did include 3 Med gull, 270 swallow, 450 meadow pipit, 2 whinchat, 14 stonechat, whitethroat, 25 chiffchaff, spotted flycatcher, 270 linnet & 18 cirl bunting.

Not a glossy ibis in sight!!

Posted September 23rd, 2013 at 5:36 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay

Sth Huish marsh

9 Glossy Ibis, on front pool today, 1ad + 8 juv's 

Posted September 23rd, 2013 at 4:47 pm by Alan Doidge in Bird News

Re: Glossy Ibis sightings

I recently returned from a week in Southern Spain, where I spent half a day at La Janda - an agricultural area with lots of wet rice fields. The most abundant bird species there was Glossy Ibis - we reckoned about 2000! These were all from the huge colony (4000 pairs!) by the Antono Valverde Centre in the Coto Donana, (about 75 miles north) and were starting their migration south. Presumably the birds now turning up on the south coast are also from this colony and have headed off in the opposite direction. Let's hope for a few more!

Posted September 23rd, 2013 at 4:22 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

Maria Fernandes reported a juv Red-necked Grebe earlier and whilst at Lower Tamar Lake Rod Mudge was able to take a photo or two which I've added below.


Red-necked Grebe Lower Tamar Lakes R Mudge 23.9.13

Red-necked Grebe Lower Tamar Lakes R Mudge 23.9.13


Posted September 23rd, 2013 at 3:59 pm in Bird News

Thurlestone Bay -

 On South Huish marsh at 9.45 a GLOSSY IBIS ( juv ). Met a visting birder from Derby who was sure she had 8 at 19.15 Sunday evening.  At 11.45 it flew off east- later one seen by Rod Bone on South Efford Marsh. At 13.15  a flock of 9 flew onto South Huish Marsh- Alan D got some good photos which he will post later 

Earlier this morning  a flock of 11 at Slapton Ley trying to land on the algae on the Ley - 2 hrs later a flock of 8 and a single there .

With 4 reported late Sunday evening at Torpoint - just how many have arrived ? Worth keeping a lookout at possible roost sites this evening .

Also a Hobby, , 2 Sooty Shearwater east at 09.15 , 2 Sandwich Tern and upto 10 Yellow Wagtail

Posted September 23rd, 2013 at 3:37 pm by Mike Passman in Bird News

Upper Tamar Lake

Upper Tamar Lake - Monday AM

Sunny, bright and clear - a lovely autumn morning.

1 Ruff, 1 Curlew Sandpiper, 5 Dunlin, 1 Ringed Plover, 2 Cormorants, 59 Canada Geese, 14 Mallard, 1 White Wagtail, 4 Grey Herons, 5 Swallows.

Harvey Kendall

Posted September 23rd, 2013 at 2:52 pm by Harvey Kendall in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

Maria Fernandes has reported a Juvenile Red Necked Grebe first seen yesterday afternoon during a Taw /Torridge Group visit.  Good close views again this morning 11.00 am.  See photos added to later posting.

Posted September 23rd, 2013 at 1:49 pm in Bird News

Mudbank, Exmouth

The first Brent Geese of the autumn that I've seen -   8 Brents, 425+ Wigeon, 33 Little Egrets, & 14 Pintail.

For information, there are 3 large yellow buoys laid out from the Rec. Ground point;   these mark the outer edge of the eel grass beds (the LNR), and are intended as a voluntary exclusion zone for kite and windsurfers between mid-Sept and end December

Posted September 23rd, 2013 at 12:50 pm by Rupert Ormerod in Bird News

Sunday 22nd September 2013

Bowling green marsh

watched from the hide from 09:00 till 12:50

the lesser yellowlegs was eventually found in with the redshank on the far side and had probably been there  all morning seems to be very settled with this it's 4th day coming into the marsh at high tides it then showed well for an hour, those in the hide still witnessed a peregrine attempt a few attacks at the waders just missing a dunlin with the lesser yellowlegs taking cover with a few greenshanks. 

In addition to Steve cox post 3 spotted redshanks eventually showed well ( 2 juv, 1 adult) 23+ ringed plover, a water rail briefley and 2 sparrowhawk, 2 Cetti's warblers, 1 great spotted woodpecker, 6.+ chiffchaff, 1 jay, 1 Mediterranean gull 2nd summer, 13+ knot, 1 raven.

another excellent morning on the marsh 

Posted September 22nd, 2013 at 11:09 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Braunton Burrows/Crow Point

Tim Davis and I did the WeBS section of the Taw/Torridge Estuary immediately downstream of Rob Jutsum and saw his two Marsh Harriers fly from Horsey Island and go down in scrub towards Sandy Lane car park. We saw one of them again briefly as we walked back towards Sandy Lane around 09.30. Superb morning for visible (and audible) migration, with strong Swallow passage, a few House Martins and Pied Wagtails, Skylarks calling high overhead (largest flock 16) and a constant light movement of Meadow Pipits. Also a 1st-yr Hobby, a single calling Yellow Wagtail heading South, a couple of Grey Wags, two Sandwich Terns, 7 Med Gulls and, between Crow Point and Airy Point, about 1,000 Oystercatchers.

Posted September 22nd, 2013 at 9:28 pm by Tim Jones in Bird News

Soar, Plym Estuary & Saltram

Arrived later than normal at Soar because I wanted to check the fog situation after yesterday's experience. A fine spell until about midday allowed some birding but little of note. Spotted flycatcher, Yellow Wagtail (3), Chiffchaff (24), and Blackcap (10). Then the fog clamped down again!

Nine species of wader on the Plym tonight - Bar-tailed Godwit, Oystercatcher (5), Curlew (43), Redshank (120), Greenshank (3), Dunlin (4), Ringed Plover (2 juvs), Common Sandpiper (3) and Turnstone. Also c90 Swallows and 2 Chiffchaffs.

Posted September 22nd, 2013 at 8:33 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Hirundines, Teignmouth

Early afternoon. One and a half hour watch over my garden. 64 swallows and 1 house martin, apart from 6 or 7 going SW, remainder all due South in calm, warm conditions, lovely!

Posted September 22nd, 2013 at 7:35 pm by Simon Bates in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh, Otter Estuary & Topsham

Bowling Green Marsh

Watched between 0800-1000. I didn't see the Lesser Yellowlegs though it was seen after I left in amongst the Redshank, so it had probabaly been there all morning. Counts of Little Egret 16, Lapwing 15, Greenshank 20, Spotted Redshank 1 poss 2 juvs, Dunlin 330+, Curlew Sandpiper 3+juvs, Curlew 506, Whimbrel 1, Little Stint 1 juv, Ringed Plover 21+, Black-tailed Godwit 850, Bar-tailed Godwit 36+, Redshank c310, Wigeon 34, Shoveler 10+, Teal 60+.

Otter Estuary

Swallow 500+, Sand Martin 10+. They were looking to leave but visibility was poor at sea, which I think was holding them up.


After Keith had kindly rung me to advise me the Lesser Yellowlegs was still about, I noted it had been seen near the Quay at Topsham mid afternoon. After a little investgation at 1630 I saw it off the slipway down to the passenger ferry, showing very closely on the Topsham side. Access to view is generally poor in this area.


Posted September 22nd, 2013 at 6:45 pm by Steve Cox in Bird News


17 med gulls.15 ads,1sw,1fw,1 knot,07-09:15.At instow rocks 75 med gulls,69 ads,3sw,3juv/fw.Largest count this year.Possibly small duplication although 12 stil at skern on leaving.3 colour ringed inc long returning polish ad PAH4.09:30-10:15

Posted September 22nd, 2013 at 5:35 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

WeBS Count - R.Caen / Taw Estuary / Horsey Island

Perfect morning for the monthly count, not a breath of wind with excellent visibility & you could hear a pin drop at 100 paces !

A great start with Maurice's Grey Phalarope close to the shoreline at the Fishermens Huts, This bird flew east towards Chivenor & may turn up again on your patch Maurice later on today!

Then not one but 2 Marsh Harriers searching for prey over Horsey Island. These landed & then flew off in the direction of Braunton Marshes > Braunton Burrows.

31 Greenshank, 9 Redshank & 11 Dunlin on Horsey Island.

Posted September 22nd, 2013 at 12:11 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Skern, Northam Burrows

07:20 - 08:30

Wigeon 30; Grey Plover 3; Snipe 5 (overhead); Dunlin 23; Mediterranean Gull 2 adults; Ringed Plover 14; Wheatear 2 juveniles; Curlew Sandpiper 1 with 3 Ringed Plover on the shingle beach; Ruff 1 (from size appeared to be female.Did not remain long); Curlew c40; Little Egret 2; Oystercatcher 71+; plus good nos of Pied Wagtail and Meadow Pipits.

Posted September 22nd, 2013 at 10:11 am by Maurice Clements in Bird News

Start Point

Went out at first light, Grasshopper Warbler and a couple Chiffchaffs on the way down to the light but nothing in the lighthouse compound. Back up at the farm about 10 more Chiffs and a couple Blackcaps. At 08:00 the fog rolled in and i left.

Posted September 22nd, 2013 at 9:09 am by Perry Sanders in Bird News

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