Devon Bird Sightings from 22nd–31st July 2015

Missing Devon rarity records 2018

Unfortunately no descriptions have been submitted for the following records of ‘A’ species reported in 2018. This means, as things stand, they will not make the official record as part of the 2018 Devon Bird Report. It would be a great shame to lose these records.

If anyone saw these birds (you don’t have to be the finder) please can you submit a description and/or photos asap to Kev Rylands: Thank you.

Chough Northam 17-18 July  

Corn Bunting Beer Head 25 August

Cory’s Shearwater (2) Ilfracombe 28 July

Cory’s Shearwater Thurlestone 26 August

Glossy Ibis Exe Estuary 21-27 October

Golden Oriole Blaxton Meadow 18 April

Great Shearwater (2) Berry Head 20 September

Great White Egret (2) Bridge Marsh, Axe Estuary 13 January

Great White Egret Black Hole Marsh, Axe Estuary 22 August

Great White Egret Exminster Marshes 30 March

Great White Egret Exmouth 06 May

Great White Egret Stover 01 October

Honey-buzzard Dartmoor 21-22 May

Little Bunting Slapton 21 October

Montagu’s Harrier Dartmoor 19 Aug

Pectoral Sandpiper Upper Tamar Lake 13 August

Ring-necked Duck Lee Moor 14 October

Rose-coloured Starling Beesands 27-28 August

Serin South Hallsands 24 April

Tree Sparrow Haldon 20 May

Posted September 24th at 8:44 am by Pete Aley in General Birding

Dawlish Warren

Please take extra care when visiting Dawlish Warren. We have been informed that due to the recent bad weather there has been significant erosion from Groyne 10 eastwards. This means that access along the site, to and from Warren Point (and the bird hide) will be via the beach only, with a risk of being cut off for a period either side of high water! Signs have been put up to alert people to the hazards, but people need to be aware that access routes that they have become used to may not be available and they need to exercise extreme caution,  with the possibility of being cut off by the tide, and people are strongly urged not to try climbing the sand cliffs. Further information is available on the Teignbridge District Council website.

Posted November 9th, 2018 at 11:08 am by Mike Daniels in General Birding


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Posted October 10th, 2016 at 9:14 am by George & Julia Harris in General Birding

Sightings Page Changes

Acting on comments to Devon Birds some changes have been made to this page. To the right of this header post you'll see there are now several subjects for you to choose to read and post on. Just click your chosen subject and use as previously.

Please be careful not to post under the wrong subject. If you do, you can still easily go back to edit and change the subject yourself so it appears on the right page.

Please try and keep posts short, particularly in the Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts page. Photographs are still very welcome.  

For help with ID email photos to

Posted June 30th, 2016 at 9:24 pm by George & Julia Harris in General Birding

Friday 31st July 2015

Bowling green marsh

watched from 17:30 till 20:10

high count of curlew with 724+ this evening , 41+ whimbrel, 500+ black tailed godwits, 12+ bar tailed godwits ( including 2 smart juvs) , 50+ dunlin( including 10 juv's ) , 1 knot, 8+ lapwing , 12+ greenshank, 250+ redshanks and the usual spotted redshank, 1 common gull, 200+ black headed gulls, 10+ teal , 60+ mallarrd , 4+ little egrets, 1 peregime made severall attacks but failed but did cause panic among the waders forcing most of the dunlin to leave. 

Posted July 31st, 2015 at 10:32 pm by Keith Birchall in General Birding


My best count of Med Gulls ever on the R.Caen late aft/early evening on the 9.4 metre spring tide.  Peaked at 161 including 18 juv's after 2 hours of watching before the tide moved them off the high tide roost.

Posted July 31st, 2015 at 7:30 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding


Whilst doing a bit of work in the reserve this morning I opened a few nets. Glad I did.

Ringed a LITTLE EGRET. First I've seen in there for a couple of years. Looks like being a record year for Reed Warblers too - 61 ringed so far.

Posted July 31st, 2015 at 2:00 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Berry Head (30/7)

no birds of note, silver washed fritillary and marbled white b/fly; porpoises; basking shark??

Posted July 31st, 2015 at 12:44 pm by graham folkerd in General Birding

East Soar

Late post for yesterday: first genuine migrants with woodpecker at the farm and willow warbler by the ponds. Still several cirl buntings in song and survey results come up with 40 pairs - back to same levels as 2012 after two relatively poor years.

Posted July 31st, 2015 at 8:38 am by Rob Macklin in General Birding

Thursday 30th July 2015

Little ringed plovers

2 in the Exeter flood relief channel at 3pm today 

Posted July 30th, 2015 at 7:50 pm by Simon M Bates in General Birding

Ingsdon, Newton Abbot

 At least 62+ Mistle Thrush at 7.30am - biggest post- breeding flock noted in this area for many years.

Posted July 30th, 2015 at 11:07 am by Jon Avon in General Birding

Wednesday 29th July 2015

Berry Head

Corys Shearwater  very close in to the head (70yds!!) last night around a small mackereling boat. Bait fish must have been very close to the surface as it was plunging very shallow. 

Posted July 29th, 2015 at 10:53 am by tim clyburn in General Birding

Tuesday 28th July 2015


excellent count of 55+ swifts this evening over our garden in redhills in exeter best count in six years that I have lived here.

Posted July 28th, 2015 at 9:13 pm by Keith Birchall in General Birding

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 15:15 till 17:45

A good increase in Black tailed godwits to 420+ , 8 Bar tailed godwits, 1 spotted redshanks , 250+ redshanks, 200+ dunlin, 41+ whimbrel, 390+ curlew, 4+ greenshanks, 1 adult Mediterranean gull , 200+ black headed gulls, 1 kingfisher, 2 stock doves, 3 buzzards. 

Posted July 28th, 2015 at 8:28 pm by Keith Birchall in General Birding

Rillage Point nr Ilfracombe

Early a.m. all heading W out of the Bristol Channel: Fulmar 63, Manx Shearwater 66, Gannet 124 (approx 50:50 ads and subads), Bonxie 1, Kittiwake 29 (all ads). Also 3 Cormorant, 1 Shag, 2 Guillemot, 2 Dunlin, a Harbour Porpoise and a Red Admiral(!) Wind WNW gusting F7 for a while, but dropping to F5.

Posted July 28th, 2015 at 9:57 am by Tim Jones in General Birding

Monday 27th July 2015

Kingsbridge Estuary Curlews

Gathered closely together and sheltering from the strong winds, a count of over 100 curlews at Charleton Point on the Kingsbridge Estuary at high tide this afternoon. 

Posted July 27th, 2015 at 8:15 pm by David Pakes in General Birding


Braving high winds in a coastal location can produce good results if you are a birdwatcher.

The numbers of Mediterranean Gull (mix of ages) have now increased to 82 including 4 juv's. 88 BH Gull inc 1 juv + 5 Common Gulls.

I Green Sandpiper flying over calling at the same time

Posted July 27th, 2015 at 5:21 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

Prawle Point Yesterday (Sunday)

Never clever here in a strong wet, southerly wind so decision to seawatch in the afternoon when winds were predicted to veer south-westerly .Watched from 1pm together with John L.  I left at 6.30pm.

Best bird a Sooty Shearwater at 3.50pm following 1598 (1pm to 4pm) Manxies and 7 Balearic Shearwaters. I Bonxie, 5 Puffins, 22 Fulmars, 2 Sandwich Terns, and John saw an Ocean Sunfish.

Posted July 27th, 2015 at 11:10 am by Tony Marchese in General Birding

Sunday 26th July 2015

Rillage Point

A brief respite in the rain around 09.00 this morning and a flock of 8 Swifts came in off the sea from the NW and straight into the SE headwind. Looked at the rainfall radar and they were flying in a narrow clear slot that stretched all the way to the Exe Estuary and Channel coast. Smart birds these migrants.

Posted July 26th, 2015 at 11:02 pm by Tim Jones in General Birding

South Brent Warbler

I would go young Chiffchaff, brighter than autumn young birds, but yellow is more of an olive-yellow tone and legs are dark. And Marsh Tit as much due to habitat/location.

Posted July 26th, 2015 at 9:31 pm by Steve Cox in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh

Visited for afternoon high tide.

408 Curlew, 11 Whimbrel, 7 Bar-tailed Godwaits, 251 Black-tailed Godwits, 165+ Dunlin (almost all ads but 3/4 juvs), 2nd cy Med Gull, 1 Spotted Redshank.

Posted July 26th, 2015 at 9:29 pm by Steve Cox in General Birding

South Brent

A couple of birds have been teasing me in the garden over the last few days, not stopping still long enough to give a clear view or identification, I caught both on camera today but am still a little unsure of the identities.

A Warbler sp that has been showing fleetingly is almost certainly a Willow Warbler but having darkish coloured legs I am not 100% the possibility of it being a Chiffchaff confuses the issue.

A Tit sp has come onto the feeders several times today and shares characteristics of both the Willow and Marsh Tit, images have been submitted to DBWPS and I will be interesting to see what they think.

Three Black Headed Gulls over yesterday was the third sighting of this species over the village this month and is certainly unusual.

Also around the garden today, Jay, Nuthatch, Coal Tit, a brood a Wrens and very protective parents the first have seen here for a little while. The numbers of both Swallow and House Martin are building at long last.

Posted July 26th, 2015 at 9:10 pm by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Berry Head

Sea watching upto 10.45am with MD, AR and BMc- Totals 12 Balearic Shears, 2500+ Manxies, 9 Puffin, 1 Bonxie, 6 Common Tern, 10 Common Scoter.  

Posted July 26th, 2015 at 12:46 pm by Mark Bailey in General Birding

Exeter Quay, Trews Weir

Little Ringed Plover (a moulting adult, prob male) below the dam at Trews Weir this am. Plenty of juv Herring Gulls and a handful of juv Lesser BB - although, given the apparent total absence of Yorks. terriers, tortoises or even small children, it's a mystery what they're doing for food.

Little Ringed Plover - 26/7/2015 Trews Weir, Exeter
Little Ringed Plover - 26/7/2015 Trews Weir, Exeter

Posted July 26th, 2015 at 12:02 pm by Tim Worfolk in General Birding

Saturday 25th July 2015

Around topsham

watched from 10:00 till 16:30

The pectoral sandpiper was seen just before I got to the hide but despite extensive searches around topsham could not be found again.

1 spotted redshank in with good numbers of redshank and greenshanks, 2 whimbrel, 1 kingfisher good numbers of black tailed godwits, 20+ dunlin including 2 juvs , 3 Mediterranean gulls( 2 adults, 1 1st summer).

from the viewing platform, 100+ Dunlin including 2 juvs, 4 knot, 1 grey plover, 10 bar tailed godwits, 20+ whimbrel.

from the goatwalk 150+ dunlin including several juvs 

on goosemoor 25+ greenshank, 100+ redshanks 

Posted July 25th, 2015 at 9:55 pm by Keith Birchall in General Birding

Lower Tamar Lake

Lower Tamar Lake 0945-1150

2 Willow Warbler, 2 Wren, 4 Spotted Flycatchers, 2 Blackcaps,2 Tufted Duck 1m 1f, 1 Cormorant, 4 G.C.Grebe, 4 Canada, 1 Jay, 2 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 2 Coal Tit, 1 Robin, 2 Coot , c25 Mallard, 3 Swallow, 2 Blackbird.

Posted July 25th, 2015 at 8:30 pm by ROD MUDGE in General Birding

Mountbatten, Plymouth


On rocks below  car park 6 Mediterranean Gulls inc 2 in full summer plumage.

Posted July 25th, 2015 at 3:14 pm by Graham Devine in General Birding

Preston Sands Paignton

A gathering of 61 Sandwich Terns which included 18 juveniles being fed by the adults on the rocks at high tide this pm. Also juvenile Med Gull.

Posted July 25th, 2015 at 2:41 pm by Clive Mason in General Birding

Sherpa Marsh

Now 5 summer-plumage Black-tailed Godwits by the pond along with a lone Common Sandpiper. 17 Canada Geese includes 6 juveniles.

Posted July 25th, 2015 at 1:05 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Friday 24th July 2015


Little gull and 51 Dunlin at Topsham rec early evening.

Posted July 24th, 2015 at 9:01 pm by Martin Elcoate in General Birding


Juvenile Yellow-Legged Gull amongst the assorted large gulls around the pipe on Goodrington beach this evening.  

Also, 3 Dunlin.

Posted July 24th, 2015 at 6:52 pm by George Wall in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh

Arrived in the hide this lunchtime (about 1.20) to be told of 2 Pectoral Sandpipers.

One appeared to be a juvenile bird and spent its time with the Dunlin flock and disappeared to the estuary with them. The other looked like an adult bird and showed much closer on the right hand side of the channel in front of the hide (still there until at least 1.50). Both birds had been present earlier in the morning apparently.

Also 3 Green Sandpipers.

Posted July 24th, 2015 at 2:29 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Berry Head

Surprisingly for anyone getting up at a normal time it was almost still & clear with 20 miles + visibility first thing - then in came the rain and wind with visibility down to 2 miles or less!

Seawatching 0530-0930hrs: 4 Pomarine Skuas (all 3rd summer pale types), 4 Arctic Skuas,1 Bonxie, 2 Balearic Shearwaters, 753 Manx Shearwaters, 133 Common Scoter,1 juv Yellow-legged Gull, 3 Mediterranean Gulls, 1 Puffin, 1 Razorbill (several Guillemots on water), 1 Whimbrel, 2 Swifts just 27 Kittiwakes (didn't count Gannets or Fulmar) and 2 Harbour Porpoise 

Posted July 24th, 2015 at 1:04 pm by Mike Langman in General Birding

Is this a juvenile starling?

The bird in pictures 1 and 2 were taken yesterday in my garden at inBrixham.  It is very different from young starling seen before.

Eds: Thanks for emailing the photos that didn't upload - it was indeed a juv starling moulting into winter plumage - perhaps more advanced moult than usual at his time of year, from an early brood. 

Posted July 24th, 2015 at 9:43 am by Mike Evans in General Birding

Thursday 23rd July 2015


2 Yellow-legged Gulls  juvs, 1 Mediterranean Gull juv 6 Common Sandpipers

Posted July 23rd, 2015 at 9:22 pm by Mike Langman in General Birding


at least 22 cormorants fishing just off Broadsands beach southern end. A dog walker told me there were 'about 50' yesterday

Eds: more likely to have been Shags

Posted July 23rd, 2015 at 7:28 pm by Jeff Hacon in General Birding

Hobby near Totnes

Hobby overhead just coming into Totnes from Avonwick last night (22nd).

Posted July 23rd, 2015 at 6:34 am by Richard Archer in General Birding

Wednesday 22nd July 2015

Wrafton etc

Took a look at the pond this evening - huge build up of Mallards! Maybe 150. Down around Sherpa Marsh a Little Grebe, 2 Little Egrets, 17 Canada Geese including 3 juvs, 18 adult Swans, a few each of Swift, Swallow, Sand Martin and House Martin, 2 Common Sandpipers, a summer plumage Black-tailed Godwit, and a Teal.

Posted July 22nd, 2015 at 7:44 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

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