Devon Bird Sightings: Bird News from 1st–7th February 2016

Coronavirus - Devon Birds bird hides

During the ongoing Coronavirus outbreak the use of Devon Birds bird hides should be in line with Government guidelines to individuals on how to protect themselves.

Please follow NHS guidelines: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/social-distancing/what-you-need-to-do/

Thank you for your co-operation and stay safe.

Posted August 25th at 9:58 am by Mike Daniels in Bird News

Changes to Devon Bird Sightings

This page was initially set up to give a concise news summary of birds of interest seen in Devon. Anyone noting interesting species, passage and counts could post the details to inform other birders what was going on around the county. Photos could also be added for interest and to enliven the posts. It was accepted that because other wildlife was of interest, this would also appear especially when included in a birding post.

However, in the last year, more posts have been appearing purely on subjects other than birds. Whilst of interest to some observers, this is detracting from the aim of the pages, i.e. principally bird sightings.

Devon Birds has therefore taken the decision to require contributors of other wildlife to post this in the Other Wildlife subject. However it’s accepted that occasional, exceptional, other wildlife seen during a birding outing justifies inclusion in the bird sightings post. This should, however, be a minor part of the post.

Photos are often appearing as a gallery, or even acting as a personal photo blog, rather than of county-wide sightings of interest. Devon Birds has a Gallery which members and other birders are welcome to submit their often stunning photos to, for others to see. Many of these photos need not then appear on this page. From now on, only two photos per post will be accepted to help keep posts more concise.

Devon Birds very much welcomes posts that already meet these criteria and those that will continue to do so. It would also be great to widen the input from keen birders who currently don’t contribute, including some old friends who have dropped out. Hopefully the changes will encourage wider participation, so if you look at the site but don’t post, please consider doing so.

Our aim is to provide a concise daily news summary of bird sightings around Devon, and these changes should fulfil this goal.

Below is a summary of the changes:

  • Bird News (bird sightings of interest, with added occasional other wildlife) will be the default subject when visitors arrive at this page.
  • Other Wildlife posts therefore won’t initially be shown unless visitors click Other Wildlife under Subjects on the right-hand side.
  • Only two photos can now be submitted per post.
  • General bird photos should be posted in our Gallery please.
  • Co-authors should now only use the Submit a Blog Post form, to ensure a more consistent format for posts.

Posted August 21st at 3:53 pm in Bird News

2019 Descriptions - last call

The deadline for the 2019 Bird Report is rapidly approaching. If you found (or saw) any of these birds please could you submit a description to recorder@devonbirds.org to ensure your records are published. Many thanks. 

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

 

Posted May 2nd at 3:27 pm by Kevin Rylands in Bird News

Membership

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

Sunday 7th February 2016

Haldon & Newton Abbot

At least five Bramblings present under the feeders opposite the bike hire at Haldon Forest Park this morning.

The male Scaup was back on Decoy Lake, Newton Abbot this afternoon.

Posted February 7th, 2016 at 6:01 pm by Will Salmon in Bird News

Glossy Ibis - Wrafton

Glossy Ibis still present at 4.45 this afternoon. Very close to trail, in clear view, but far too wet for my camera!

Posted February 7th, 2016 at 5:06 pm by Kelvin Irwin in Bird News

Beeslands and Slapton

A single female Common Scoter close to shore at Beesands and 50-60 Mute Swans on the ley but little else. At Slapton a male Red Crested Pochard by the tank. Further out 3 Black Necked Grebes and a single Red Necked grebe.

Posted February 7th, 2016 at 5:06 pm by Jeff Hacon in Bird News

South Brent ~ Barn owl

First time that I can recall local birding at and around South Brent being more productive than a trip around Torbay.

A brilliant start to the Brent birding day with views of a Barn owl just outside the village just after 7.30am, the Barn owl being the first true "wild" one I have seen here in over 20 years, so a real bonus.

Two male Blackcaps in a friends garden, at least five Siskin around my garden feeders. A male Reed Bunting just outside the village and another in a village garden, a male Sparrow Hawk making two passes at the birds using my feeding station finished off the day.

Broadsands gave five Goldcrest a soaring Buzzard and two Great Northern Divers well out in the bay.

The coastal area off  Roundham Head gave Turnstone, Greater Black Backed Gulls, four Great Crested Grebe, two Fulmar came into view followed by a Heron within moments the Fulmars multiplied to five and very meaningfully drove the Heron away for the area.

Posted February 7th, 2016 at 5:04 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Glossy Ibis - Wrafton

The Glossy Ibis at Wrafton attracted a lot of attention this morning from several serious bird photographers with some all 'singing & dancing' equipment.

I promised Sue Bruce who first spotted the bird as it flew into the scrape at Wrafton a few days ago that I would do my best to obtain a decent quality photo for her diary, weather permitting.

Most of my pics turned out to be absolute rubbish but one, a difficult shot taken through the brambles & branches exceeded all my expectations, in fact it was the best photo I have ever taken through a telescope.

Please do not ask me how many many hundreds of pics I had to take to get this one but I did manage to discharge 3 batteries in the process!


Posted February 7th, 2016 at 4:41 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Torbay Boat trip

Spent yesterday looking at weather maps watching fronts and decided to run today and had a good trip with a Red-necked Grebe out from the Broadsands/Saltern Cove area. 12 Great Crested Grebe, 6 Great Northern Diver, 17+ Fulmar, 20+ Cormorants in the 7 Quarries area, Brixham, 4 Purple Sandpiper at Brixham Breakwater, Gannets and 30+ Guillemots on the water off Berry Head. 1 Harbour Porpoise and 5 Grey Seals in the Brixham area. Glad we went, finding a window in the weather. Wind increased as we returned to Paignton Harbour.  

Posted February 7th, 2016 at 3:47 pm by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News

Wrafton - Glossy Ibis

Another picture from today


Posted February 7th, 2016 at 1:54 pm by Tim Kevan in Bird News

Cranbrook, Nr Exeter

Having not recently posted anything from this new town I took a walk around the Country Park this AM.  Starting at the Education Campus I quickly listed 21 species, the best being a Green Sandpiper which flew off west.   A lake opposite the Campus has been created and with the weekend rain is now 300m long and contained 25 Mallard. C. 25 Linnet also present here plus a Goldcrest in the Alders. 

Then moved on to the new Cranbrook Railway Stn where parking is best to visit 'The Scrape'.  Sadly this area has now become overgrown with Bullrushes and other vegitation so hardly any water is visible.  What birds are there are usually hidden unless disturbed but I have had Jack Snipe here in recent weeks.  I finally ended up at Clyst Honiton where I parked near the end of the airport runway.  Another lake has been created here and a pair of Stonechat were on the fencing with Buzzard over. 

An interesting area to follow and to determine how birds are using a developing urban area.

Posted February 7th, 2016 at 12:46 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Bolt Tail Woods, Hope Cove

Firecrest in scrub with Goldcrest & Coal Tit.

Posted February 7th, 2016 at 12:38 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Wrafton Glossy Ibis

Showing really well this morning as JonTurner requested here is one photo

Posted February 7th, 2016 at 12:22 pm by Robert Cudmore in Bird News

Glossy Ibis - Wrafton

Was still present this morning close to the Tarka Trail, in good sunlight, which attracted a few big cameras! I hope one of the photographers posts a pic here soon! Also present a Green Sandpiper.

Posted February 7th, 2016 at 12:06 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Cattewater & Plym Est 6th Feb

One Great Northern Diver Adult in Cattewater, 4 Red-breasted Mergansers (2 male, 2 female) lower Plym. Very distant views of what was probably the Black-necked Grebe but only had bins, so too far to be sure. 

Posted February 7th, 2016 at 6:38 am by Steve Cox in Bird News

Saturday 6th February 2016

Topsham

A wander around Topsham in the rain. 2 Goldeneye still at Topsham rec. Good numbes of waders feeding on Bowling Green Marsh including 178 Bar-tailed godwit, 23 Grey plover and 2 Greenshank. Counted 28 Pintail, 8 Pochard and 4 Tufted ducks.

Posted February 6th, 2016 at 7:22 pm by Martin Elcoate in Bird News

Buckfastleigh

57 Mandarin Ducks (43 males/23 females) on meadow floods immediately upstream of Dart Bridge between Buckfastleigh and Buckfast, early pm.

Posted February 6th, 2016 at 2:04 pm by Andy Smith in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

 Getting to and from Tamar Lake today wit the weather was at times a bit tricky, so I didn't stay too long.

There were 26 Goosander 14m 12f, 24 Tufted Duck, 2 Cormorants, 7 L.T.Tits, 2 Mallard. The car park feeders were put out today after a two week absence and the usual suspects started to appear.

Posted February 6th, 2016 at 1:14 pm by ROD MUDGE in Bird News

Wrafton Glossy Ibis

9am still present, weather to say the least not good and 6 spoonbills present

Posted February 6th, 2016 at 11:56 am by Robert Cudmore in Bird News

Friday 5th February 2016

Seaton Marshes

Male green winged teal feeding at the back of of the pool at 4.15 this afternoon, but no sign of the glossy ibis.

Posted February 5th, 2016 at 6:28 pm by Ray Hamilton in Bird News

Glossy Ibis - Wrafton Pond

The light was a fraction better early aft, so managed a few more digiscoped pics.

The Ibis was spooked by Gulls several times & on one occasion we thought that we might have lost it from the Marshes but it circled around & landed back on the edge of the scrape showing well for Margaret Phillips.

Posted February 5th, 2016 at 3:52 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

1000 - 1300

From the hide: 24 Lapwing, 23 Shoveler, 7 Pochard, 5 Pintail, 2 Snipe, 1 Little grebe, 3 Greylag geese, and good numbers of grazing Teal and Wigeon. 3 Reed bunting on the feeders.

From the viewing platform: 2 Greenshank, 3 Grey plover, 3 Shelduck.

Plenty of Avocet, Dunlin and Black tailed Godwit on the estuary mud, together with several Brent geese a long way out. 4 Red breasted merganser on the Exe, as the wind began to pick up and the rain came in.

Posted February 5th, 2016 at 3:44 pm by Alan Livsey in Bird News

Broadsands

The Red-necked Grebe was still present today off Elberry Headland looking toward Hope's Nose, also 3 Great Northern Divers, 1 Great Crested Grebe.

Around the car parks 6 Cirl Buntings, 1 Siskin, 2 Firecrest and 2 Goldcrest. 

Posted February 5th, 2016 at 3:38 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Ilfracombe - 5th February

Mainly dry walk along the town's Coastal Path this morning - several pairs of Fulmars along the cliffs on the Tors & at least 3 Purple Sandpipers on the rocks off the Capstone. Also spotted a least 2 Harbour Porpoises possibly feeding about 100yrds off the Capstone due to the large numbe of gulls around & above them. Solitary Shag opposite the harbour on the rocks.

Fulmar
Fulmar

Purple Sandpiper
Purple Sandpiper

Shag
Shag

Posted February 5th, 2016 at 3:10 pm by Chris Bollen in Bird News

Glossy Ibis - Wrafton

After several attempts at digiscoping this bird in poor light managed to get a couple worth posting on the blog!



Posted February 5th, 2016 at 12:28 pm by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

Aveton Gifford

Barn owl on post by road bridge.

Posted February 5th, 2016 at 11:16 am by Keith millham in Bird News

Newton Creek Noss Mayo

Rising tide in creek. Greenshank, 3 Redshank, Oyster Catcher.

On feeder in garden Marsh tit.

Posted February 5th, 2016 at 11:08 am by Jeremy Spooner in Bird News

Glossy Ibis

Still present this morning by the Tarka Trail at Wrafton. Rob will post photos later!

Posted February 5th, 2016 at 9:55 am by Jon Turner in Bird News

Thursday 4th February 2016

Filleigh North Devon

Today's trip to see Somerset birds started off well with a Red Kite being harassed by a crow over the village of Filleigh just before 9 am.

Posted February 4th, 2016 at 6:32 pm by Andy Lansdell in Bird News

Brixham Harbour & Broadsands

Brixham: 11 Purple Sandpipers on the disused jetty and a further 2 feeding on the sea side of the breakwater.

Broadsands: 3 Great Northern Divers, one close to shore seen catching a small flatfish. A Firecrest was in the main fee-paying car park by the stream. Three Goldcrests in the corner of the far car park. Two Cirl Buntings.

Purple Sandpiper
Purple Sandpiper

Firecrest
Firecrest

Firecrest
Firecrest

Posted February 4th, 2016 at 2:52 pm by david cawthraw in Bird News

Velator update

Just had a phone call from Sue Bruce, who tells me a Glossy Ibis is on the scrape by the Tarka Trail.

 

I'm on my way....

Posted February 4th, 2016 at 2:27 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Velator

I was away last week, but before I left there was a dead sheep in the field outside the reserve. It attracted the attentions of the local Corvids and GBB Gulls. Today, there's not much left of the carcass, but there were 4 Ravens IN the reserve waiting their turn.

Posted February 4th, 2016 at 1:36 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

South Molton just above the A361 Link Road

Red Kite, quite low above A361 just past Aller Cross roundabout toward Barnstaple at 0830 February 3.

Posted February 4th, 2016 at 9:29 am by Phil Plant in Bird News

Wednesday 3rd February 2016

Haldon and Exminster Marsh

Haldon Forest Park while closed the general public due to the potential danger from high winds the staff did let a few birders onto the park which allowed views of two male Bramblings that were frequenting the feed station in front of the Rangers office. Good numbers of both Chaffinch and Siskin. Other species included two Song Thrush, one Redwing, Greenfinch, Nuthatch, Greater Spotted Woodpecker, two Pied Wagtails, Blue, Great and Coal Tit, on leaving a Raven overhead.

Exminster Marsh gave a Peregrine Falcon that was causing a stir amongst the waders and waterfowl, a flock of Golden Plover, lots of Lapwing, Canadian Geese beyond counting, a count of 96 Rook in one field, plenty of  Redshank, Dunlin, largeflocks of Brent Geese. Three Heron, several Little Egrets, female Reed Bunting, three Stonechat, duck species included Wigeon still in very large numbers, Shoveller, Pintail, Tufted, Teal, Shellduck and lots of birders hoping for the Short Eared Owl that again in the time that I was there remained out of sight.

Posted February 3rd, 2016 at 8:52 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Top of estuary Puslinch. River Yealm

Tide starting to fall strong wind up the estuary.

24 Wigeon 47 Curlew, 6 Oyster catcher, Redshank, Greenshank, 3 Egret.

Posted February 3rd, 2016 at 3:31 pm by Jeremy Spooner in Bird News

Tuesday 2nd February 2016

Saltram Plymouth

Walked from hide to bridge five Red -Breasted Mergansers,three Med Gulls in with roosting flock of Black headed gulls,three Little grebes,and one Black-necked grebe close to bridge allso prescent two Great crested grebes.

Posted February 2nd, 2016 at 10:43 pm by Chris Buckland in Bird News

Berrynarbor

A feisty male Blackcap with face covered in yellow pollen continually chased off the Blue Tits from the Camellia flowers today. The Firecrest still present in the garden.



Posted February 2nd, 2016 at 9:45 pm by Margaret Phillips in Bird News

short eared owl- exminster marsh

despite the wind,the short eared owl showed ,quartering mostly distant at exminster marsh


Posted February 2nd, 2016 at 8:38 pm by gray clements in Bird News

Spotted Redshank ~ Starcross

The previously observed and reported Spotted Redshank is still frequenting the flooded field adjacent to the EA Veterinary Investigation Centre, opposite the entrance to Starcross and the exit from the coastal lane from Powderham , the bird tends to favour the far side of the field from the road

Dawlish Warren Nature Reserve, the walk out to the hide gave Little Grebe, and a Gadwall on one of the ponds. The Hide area gave 6 Turnstone, Brent Geese, 5 Pipit sp, Shellduck, Oyster Catcher, Grey Plover, Red Breasted Merganser 7 +, Curlew, Greater Black Backed Gull and 5 Lesser Black Backs, Cormorant, Redshank, Little Egret and a very mobile flock of 30 plus Dunlin.

From the car park of the Passage House Inn, Kingsteignton, 23 Lapwing, 5 Little Egret, Curlew, redshank, Greater Back Gull.

The morning had given some good birding around the home feeders and fields surrounding the house with a total of 30 species which included 3 Mistle Thrush, 4 Song Thrush, 2 Redwing, 5 Meadow Pipits the first ones seen here since the beginning of December,6 Pied Wagtails, 3 Siskin, 42 Chaffinch, 3 Buzzard, 1 Lesser Black Backed Gull, 36 Herring Gull, Jay, 2 Raven, Goldcrest. On arriving home my wife Jacqui told me she had been disturbed by a commotion in one of our roadside hedges and found a first year female Sparrow Hawk scrabbling with a Blackbird that managed to get free and escape which took the home total to a very presentable 31species.

Posted February 2nd, 2016 at 5:30 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Wrafton

Male Pochard on Wrafton pond along with 9 Shoveler. Male Shelduck on the flooded field. A large number of Collared Dove in trees by pond (30+). Is this number unusual?

Posted February 2nd, 2016 at 5:19 pm by Kelvin Irwin in Bird News

River Erme Holbeton.

20 Wigeon, 15 Curlew, Oyster Catcher, 2 Jay and Raven

Posted February 2nd, 2016 at 3:40 pm by Jeremy Spooner in Bird News

Haldon Forest

Three Bramblings, 2 males and a female, in among the Chaffinch flock by the forest's Visitors Centre; coming to ground often and feeding on sunflowers seeds from the feeders. c30 Siskins also around the centre / feeders.

Bramblings
Bramblings

Posted February 2nd, 2016 at 1:27 pm by david cawthraw in Bird News

Peacock

First peacock butterfly of the year in Rattery.

Posted February 2nd, 2016 at 12:57 pm by Ian Samuel in Bird News

Chiffchaff

Chiffchaff feeding in my garden at midday yesterday - it's a very blustery, coastal garden just inland from Northam Burrows - first one I've seen in the garden since the very cold spring we had a few years ago.

Posted February 2nd, 2016 at 8:44 am by Ruth Wiseman in Bird News

Monday 1st February 2016

REDWINGS

50+ Redwings along with a few Mistle Thrush at High Bullen Golf Course on the fairway at the entrance at 1000 am today, all had moved on when I returned at 1230pm.

Posted February 1st, 2016 at 5:31 pm by Philip Plant in Bird News

Starcross

The Spotted Redshank was again in the field adjacent to the Veterinary Investigation Centre with 10 Greenshanks and c50 Redshanks.


Posted February 1st, 2016 at 2:49 pm by david cawthraw in Bird News

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