Devon Bird Sightings from 1st–7th May 2015


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

Thursday 7th May 2015

Stoke N.Devon

Late entry for Monday 4th May. Phone wires by Stoke church .Approx 70 swallows. Amazing never seen so many at the same time . Plus 1 swift.

Posted May 7th, 2015 at 10:16 am by Mick Mitchell in Bird News

Wednesday 6th May 2015

Bowling green marsh

watched from 18:30 till 20:15

a quiet evening , 183+ black tailed godwit, 18+ bar tailed godwit, 26+ whimbrel, 1 knot, 2 oystercatchers , 1 redshank, 6+ greenshank, 7+ little egret with good numbers of sand Martin a few swift, house Martin and swallows.

Posted May 6th, 2015 at 10:41 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Exmouth Seafront

An hour's seawatch from the seafront in evening sunshine with good numbers of wheeling Sandwich Terns and Gannets and a very steady stream of Manx Shearwaters heading west in groups of 3 to 7. A single Pomarine Skua was closely followed by a beautiful tight group of no less than seven of the same species. They flew quite purposefully with heavier wingbeats than Arctics I've seen, so that's my guess...perhaps someone more experience than I can confirm or otherwise.

Posted May 6th, 2015 at 7:55 pm by dav in Bird News

Tuesday 5th May 2015

Bowling green marsh

watched from 17:00 till 20:15

a good evening on the marsh with continued build up of gulls with 5 1st summer Mediterranean gulls in among 300+ black headed gulls( 1 new ringed bird white ring TMWA have sent off appears to be a polish ringed bird), 3 common gull and 3 sandwich terns.

Good numbers of waders with 60+ whimbrel, 27+ bar tailed godwits, 181+ black tailed godwits, 7 dunlin, 1 knot, 2 oystercatchers, 2 redshanks , 14+ greenshanks, 1 common sandpiper . 1 hobby made 2 unsuccessful passes with 300+ sand martins and 40+ swallows, 3 wigeon.

Posted May 5th, 2015 at 9:51 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Budleigh Salterton

Seawatching from 14.15 to 16.45 from the eastern most shelter on Budleigh front.

Highlights were 3 Great Skuas together (14.15), 1 Pomarine Skua (15.10),1 Great Northern Diver  in partial summer plumage, 1 Red Throated Diver, 21 Whimbrel and 382 Manx Shearwaters (an under estimate as many more were passing in numbers further out but too difficult to count). All birds going west.

Supporting cast of c30 Kittiwakes, 50 Sandwich terns, 4 probable Arctic Terns, c20 Auks (mostly Razorbills) and plenty of Gannets and Fulmars. One Swift and 2 Swallows in off.

Posted May 5th, 2015 at 8:12 pm in Bird News


Two Swifts just flashed past our house in Bideford. With the wind like it is today they weren't hanging around.

Posted May 5th, 2015 at 6:27 pm by Karen Sims & John Towers in Bird News


Cuckoo, juv Stonechats and several Wheatear at Burrator in stormy weather today.

Posted May 5th, 2015 at 3:29 pm by Lowell Mills in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

Best bird this lunchtime (until about 1.45) was a Common Tern that flew from where it was hiding and headed out to the estuary but was beaten back by the strong wind a dropped back out of sight on the far bank looking from the hide. Otherwise good numbers of hirundines (mainly Sand Martin) and 2 Oystercatchers.

On Goosemoor, 1 Whimbrel, 5 Greenshank and 2 Egyptian Geese,

Posted May 5th, 2015 at 2:04 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Red Legged Partridges - Yalberton

Family group of at least 6 Red Legged Partridges on the back road from Sainsburys to Stoke Gabriel, near to the "cider sales" farm, all crossing the road. Saw a similar group last year nearby, so will watch this area more diligently in future 

Posted May 5th, 2015 at 1:09 pm by Trevor Leaman in Bird News

Hopes Nose

Sea watching - c20 Manxies, 1 Great Northern Diver,  5 Swifts and a Swallow in off, 3 Whimbrel on rocks. A Lesser Whitethroat singing near the entrance by the road and showing occasionally. Also 2 Whitethroats, 2 Blackcap and a Chiffchaff. 

Posted May 5th, 2015 at 11:23 am by Mark Bailey in Bird News

European Nightjar

One early this morning sat on a gate on the Exminster Marshes found by James Dimond then seen my myself and B Heasman in flight .

Posted May 5th, 2015 at 9:33 am by Dave Stone in Bird News

Monday 4th May 2015

Night Heron nr Kingsbridge

Saw an adult Night Heron on private land today. Unfortunatly when i asked the land owner ( non-birder ) if i could release the news he gave me a polite but definate no and it cannot be seen from any public land. Apparently not seen before today. I know many people do not like news of birds which are not ' available ' being put on sites like this but personally i 've always liked to know as it gives you the incentive to keep looking for 'rares ' as something else good might be around. Apologies for not getting the green light from the land owner, tried my best and rest assured there is no 'clique ' of viewers who have seen it, only me.

Posted May 4th, 2015 at 7:29 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Cuckoo Wistman's wood

 Cuckoo seen close to river just below Wistman's wood at 2pm today. Strange call never heard before, first note normal second note almost abbreviated, just wondered whether anyone has heard a similar call before ?

Posted May 4th, 2015 at 7:01 pm by Tom and jasper Michie in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from the hide 08:15 till 11:00

from the hide 25+ bar tailef godwits, 20+ whimbrel, 1 common tern , 200+ black headed gulls, good numbers of swallows, sedge warblera and reed warblers, 1 avocet, 2 oystercatchers, 4 little egrets.

from the viewing platform, 2 knot

goosemoor , 3 common sandpiper , 1 greenshank, 50+ black tailed godwits.

Posted May 4th, 2015 at 6:15 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Brixham surprise

Red Legged Partridge strutted accross Mathill road in front of the car this afternoon

Posted May 4th, 2015 at 4:18 pm by Tim Clyburn in Bird News

Yarner Wood / Bovey Heathfield

Very early morning walk around Yarner produced Yellowhammer, Blackcap, Stonechat, Whitethroat, Willow Warbler & Tree Pipit on the heath. On the path adjacent to the path a pair of Redstart & possible LS woodpecker( wouldn't put my house on it though) In the wood plenty of Pied Flycatcher & single male redstart singing from top of tree.

Late morning Bovey Heathfield with Rob & Steff Murphy - Yellowhammer, Linnet, Whitethroat, Stonechat & a very close Tree Pipit.

Tree Pipit - Bovey Heathfield
Tree Pipit (eds Meadow Pipit) - Bovey Heathfield

Redstart - Yarner
Redstart - Yarner

Yellowhammer - Bovey Heathfield
Yellowhammer - Bovey Heathfield

Posted May 4th, 2015 at 4:13 pm by paul treen in Bird News

Yarner Wood


6 male Mandarins, Grey Wagtail, Mixed Tit flock (Great, Blue, Coal, Marsh and Long Tailed), Great Spotted Woodpecker and Nuthatch at Pond Hide. 

Elsewhere in the wood 3 Wood Warblers, 5 Pied Flycatchers, male Redstart in full song, 5 Song Thrushes (one with a young bird), 2 Mistle Thrushes, 2 Jays, Treecreeper and Blackcap.  2 Ravens visible flying over the canopy. 

On the wood's fringes and adjacent heath 1 Garden Warbler (plus another singing), 6 Swifts, 8 Swallows, 5 House Martins, 5 Buzzards, 2 Redpolls, 3 Yellowhammers, 3 Siskins, 3 Linnets, 2 Goldfinches, 2 Willow Warblers, 3 Stonechats (2 males).  Tree Pipit and Green Woodpecker calling but not seen. 

Posted May 4th, 2015 at 3:46 pm by Paul Darlington in Bird News

Shipley Nr South Brent (Cuckoo)

Shipley Bridge near South Brent at sunrise this morning following a report yesterday of a Cuckoo calling behind the old pump house site on the track up to the Avon dam.

28 species recorded I suspect it would have been a few more if my bird song recognition was up to scratch, something singing or calling from just about every bush.

Unidentified Warbler species I suspect a Willow Warbler

Carrion Crow 4, Great Tit 5, Pheasant calling, Wood Pigeon 15, Willow Warbler 6, Coal Tit 2, Chiffchaff 4, Greenfinch, Grey Wagtail 3, Chaffinch 10, Skylark, Blackbird 20, Siskin 2, Song Thrush, Stock Dove, Robin 8, Jay 3, Goldcrest 3, Cuckoo, Yellow Hammer 8, Meadow Pipit 8 (mostly mobbing the Cuckoo) hen Sparrow hawk, male Reed Bunting, Blue Tit 3, Dipper, Blackcap 2 (male showing well with nesting material but female only showing periodically) Dunnock 3. Wren, unidentified Warbler species 5.

Back at home a pair of Mistle Thrush feeding in the field, Nuthatch and male Siskin on the feeders.

Posted May 4th, 2015 at 3:41 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Rillage Point to Widmouth Head

Best morning of hirundine migration so far this spring. Between 06.50 and 10.20 I counted c.730 Swallows, c.90 Sand Martins and c.40 House Martins heading west, the great majority after 08.00. Though passage was concentrated along the cliff edge, birds were also passing behind me and well out to sea, so the above totals would certainly have been higher with extra pairs of eyes. Also 15 Swifts, and calling Tree Pipits (2) and Yellow Wagtail (1) flying through. A mix of territorial and passage Whitethroats (9), Blackcaps (5) and Chiffchaffs (6) in the scrub.

Posted May 4th, 2015 at 11:17 am by Tim Jones in Bird News

Brixham Breakwater

10 Purple Sandpiper on the old fuel jetty, Brixham Breakwater at 9ish this morning.

Posted May 4th, 2015 at 10:26 am by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News

Sunday 3rd May 2015

Yarner Wood

Fairly quick but worthwhile visit to Yarner Wood this morning produced a Tree Pipit on the heath above the car park, a superb male Redstart seen from the track just below the heath, a few male Pied Flycatchers and 2 Wood Warblers, plus the usual Mandarins on the pond.

Posted May 3rd, 2015 at 10:04 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Northam Burrows

Walkaround the Burrows & Skern this afternoon amongst e squally showers. A few Wheater, Swallows, Shelduck, Oystercatchers, some small waders well out that looked like Dunlin and over 90 Whimbrel. These were on the beach side to start then flew over the golf course and on to the course and Skern.

Posted May 3rd, 2015 at 9:05 pm by Karen Sims & John Towers in Bird News

Bovey Heathfield

Popped in Bovey Heathfield this afternoon for a quick look to find no birds about. Soon discovered why - a Hobby perched on a post on top of the earthwork next to the information stone. Wouldn't let me get too close and flew off. After it went 5 Stonechat, 2 Yellowhammer & 2 whitethroat appeared.

distant hobby
distant hobby

Posted May 3rd, 2015 at 5:55 pm by paul treen in Bird News


Early morning walk around exminster produced my first "devon" swifts (beaten by a day by their somerset cousins at Shapwick - along with the very sleepy Hudsonian Godwit) loads of displaying Sedge warblers, Willow Warbler, 9 whimbrel & 10+ little egrets. Best bird for me a Yellow Wagtail feeding amongst the cattle between mid &  fisherman's carpark 

Yellow Wagtail
Yellow Wagtail

Displaying Sedge Warbler
Displaying Sedge Warbler

Sedge Warbler
Sedge Warbler

Posted May 3rd, 2015 at 5:50 pm by paul treen in Bird News

Venford, Dartmeet & South Brent

A walk around Venford today gave a pair of Great Crested Grebe on the water, male Siskin displaying, pair of Linnets, Goldcrest, Long Tailed Tit, Skylark, Meadow Pipits, Warbler sp (possibly a Willow)

Dartmeet very busy with visitors the feeders were empty and devoid of any bird life of mention, female Grey Wagtail on the river on leaving a pair of Linnets, pair of Stonechat, Meadow Pipit and Sky Lark.

Back at home in South Brent my first Swifts of the year with two coming in low over the field and roof top, female Peregrine towards Brent Hill, Starling and a male Siskin on the feeders.

Posted May 3rd, 2015 at 5:14 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Bowling green marsh & topsham

Watched from 08:15 till 10:50

from the hide, 21+ bar tailed godwits, 150+ black tailed godwit, 1 avocet, 2 knot, 12+ greenshank, 2 redshanks, 20+ whimbrel, 30+ swift, 1 common sandpiper , sedge and reed warblers , 2 Cetti's warblers, 110+ black headed gulls, 1 common gull.

along the lane and viewing platform , 2 whitethroat, 35+ whimbrel.

best bird of the morning was a hobby over topsham quay before it headed over to exminster marsh.

 1 black headed gull with white ring on right leg with 21N6 will send of later.

Posted May 3rd, 2015 at 12:59 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Saturday 2nd May 2015

Bowling green marsh

watched from 16:30 till 19:15

the highlight was 26+ sandwich terns that flew in just after 19:00, 19+ bar tailed godwits, 2 knot, 1 dunlin, 21+ greenshank, 2 redshanks , 1 avocet, 35+ whimbrel, 150+ black tailed godwits, 20+ curlew, 2 oystercatcher, 150+ sand martin , good numbers of swallows and house martins, still good numbers of sedge and reed warblers.

Posted May 2nd, 2015 at 10:49 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

Following on from Nick Potter's post yesterday about the Male Wheatear near the Middle Car Park, I have spent several hours over the last week patiently watching what looks like two pairs of Wheatear's in the fields around Lion's Rest to Middle Car park.  Kept my distance so these shots aren't great but they are indeed impressive birds.

Posted May 2nd, 2015 at 9:16 pm by Jo King in Bird News

Teign Estuary

Despite the weather 75 species were recorded around the estuary today, the highlight being a pair of Little Ringed Plovers off Passage House late afternoon. Other sightings included 4 Whimbrel, 3 Turnstones, 2 Common Sandpipers, a Bar-tailed Godwit and a late Red-breasted Merganser.

Posted May 2nd, 2015 at 8:20 pm by Will Salmon in Bird News


Saw four roe deer and heard a cuckoo in the mist at Bellever today.

Posted May 2nd, 2015 at 4:53 pm by Paul Rendell in Bird News


Orcombe Point - sum plum black guillemot off the point @ 0600, heading east before looping back around and heading for the Warren. Also 5 great northern diver and 1 red-throated diver.

Posted May 2nd, 2015 at 8:19 am by Matt Knott in Bird News

Friday 1st May 2015

Bowling green marsh

watched from 16:00 till 19:15

from the hide 27 bar tailed godwit, 27+ greenshank, 3 avocet, 1 knot , 80+ black tailed godwit, 30+ whimbrel, good numbers of house martins and swallows, a few sand Martin, 2 swift, again around 20+ sedge warbler and reed warblers, 5+ reed buntings, 2 great black backed gulls , 200+ black headed gulls, 2 lesser black backed gulls, 7+ little egret, 2 sparrowhawk.

from the viewing platform 1 sandwich tern

from the goatwalk 3 sandwich Terns, 4 pale bellied Brent geese.

Posted May 1st, 2015 at 10:35 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Red Kite at Gulworthy

At 1610 a Red Kite moving east just south of Gulworthy Cross, over the Bere Alston Rd.

Posted May 1st, 2015 at 7:22 pm by Neil Moore in Bird News

sighting of male mandarin duck


This morning ( 010515 ) around 1045 saw a male mandarin duck on the foreshore of the River Dart, Totnes, at Steamer Quay, before it flew off upstream.

Posted May 1st, 2015 at 6:43 pm by andy woodward in Bird News

Slapton Ley

Windy and cold but still 6 Whimbrel over, Swift with 100+ Swallows, House & Sand Martins, 4 Cetti's Warblers & 2 Reed Warblers. Otter seen briefly by Torcross Hide!

Posted May 1st, 2015 at 5:04 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Ivybridge, the Erme

2 Dipper. 1 colour ringed double orange on right, light grey/blue left. 3rd year seen at this location. No visible rings on 2nd.

Posted May 1st, 2015 at 3:03 pm by richard teague in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

Chilly and fairly windy at Exminster Marshes this lunchtime. The highlight was a superb male Wheatear close to the middle car park. Also 1 Peregrine tucking into a recent catch and 1 Hobby low over the marsh. Decent numbers of Swallows, House Martins and Sand Martins with a few Swifts in amongst them.

Posted May 1st, 2015 at 2:18 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Cann Woods, Plympton

Late night stroll in Cann Woods, heard churring from first Nightjar of the season.  Also there a Sparrowhawk and several Tawny owls calling.

Posted May 1st, 2015 at 6:52 am by Christopher Marcol in Bird News

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