Devon Bird Sightings: Bird News from 15th–21st July 2016

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

Thursday 21st July 2016

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 17:50 till 20:35

A busy high tide with 525+ curlew, 54+ whimbrel, 392+ redshank, 1 spotted redshank, 26+ greenshanks , 264+ black tailed godwits, 7 bar tailed godwits, 17+ dunlin, 800+ black headed gulls, 12+ lapwing, 4 wigeon, 60+ mallards, 1 common sandpiper.

Posted July 21st, 2016 at 10:39 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Dartington- Conservation Warden

After a few unconfirmed sightings, thrilled to see a Spotted Flycatcher this morning hanging around 1500 year old yew Tree by St Mary's Tower. Other sighted around the Foxhole area. Also a Dab chick on nest on the lower marsh.

Posted July 21st, 2016 at 8:27 pm by Jordan Harris in Bird News

Wednesday 20th July 2016

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 17:20 till 20:15

1290+ Black headed gulls included 2 ringed birds details to be sent of , 1 1st summer Mediterranean gull, 14+ dunlin, 1 spotted redshank, 1 common sandpiper, 20+ greenshanks, 250+ redshank, 61+ whimbrel, 300+ curlew, 10+ bar tailed godwits, 250+ black tailed godwits, 2 little egrets, 2 buzzards, 6 wigeon, 20+ teal, 7+ oystercatchers.

Posted July 20th, 2016 at 9:36 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Rillage Point

06.20 to 07.40: Obvious continuous light passage W of Herring Gulls 103 in groups of two to five until sea fog rolled in and halted further counting. 90% adults, remainder sub-adults; no juvs. Also a handful of Lesser Black-backs and Black-headeds, also moving W. Only 70 Manx Shearwaters. Also 1 Swift, 1 Grey Wagtail, 8 Pieds.

Posted July 20th, 2016 at 9:03 pm by Tim Jones in Bird News

Blackdown Hills -Devon

Friend who lives between Hemyock and Clayhidon (in Devon) had a Red Kite fly east over the garden this morning. This is on the edge of the Blackdowns not far from the Wellington Monument spine road.

Posted July 20th, 2016 at 7:28 pm by John & Karen Towers & Sims in Bird News

Babbacombe / Walls Hills

A large gathering of gulls off Oddicombe Beach, Torquay yesterday evening produced 10 Mediterranean Gulls: 4 Juveniles, 3 Ads,1 2nd summer, 2 1st summer 

Posted July 20th, 2016 at 8:16 am by Mike Langman in Bird News

Tuesday 19th July 2016

Bowling Green Marsh

Viewed over the evening high-tide.

From the hide Spotted Redshank, c 220-Redshank, 3-Common Sandpipers, 2-Dunlin, 23-Greenshank, 9-Bar-tailed Godwits, c 200-Black-tailed Godwits, c380-Curlew, c55-Whimbrel, c25-Oystercatchers, 9-Lapwing, adult Mediterranean Gull,  c800-Black-headed Gulls, 11-Little Egrets, Swallows and Sand Martins moving through.

From the viewing platform 31-Sandwich Terns flew down from the goatwalk calling and circling over the platform before dropping onto Bowling Green Marsh at 20:40hrs and later viewed from the hide.

Posted July 19th, 2016 at 10:13 pm by David Boult in Bird News

Beesands Ley - problems

Just to let everyone know that Beesands Ley is very quiet at the moment but cattle have strayed from the field on to the walkway and the ramp into the hide has been damaged by the cattle and is unsafe.  We are arranging for repairs to be carried out as quickly as possible but it may take several days before we can get a contractor down to the site.

Posted July 19th, 2016 at 10:05 pm in Bird News


only 40 meds tonight,12ads,13 ss,13fs,2 juv..Also little ringed plover,adult black tailed godwit,adult knot,2 ad sanderling,10 redshank,5 whimbrel.

Posted July 19th, 2016 at 9:59 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News


A twist on "symbiosis!"  Found a wren's nest inside this (damaged) plastic owl ornament. (The owl being attached to a trellis on the front elevation of a house close to the village of Chittlehampton. 

Posted July 19th, 2016 at 6:28 pm by Stewart Beer in Bird News

Rillage Point

06.20–08.05: Migrants included a flock of 10 Little Egrets flying E up channel and 4 Swifts E (including one far out at sea in amongst Manx Shearwaters!) Total of 790 Manx Shearwaters heading W; still going when I had to leave.

Posted July 19th, 2016 at 6:15 pm by Tim Jones in Bird News

English Channel

Rob Dart was out on an angling boat mid-channel (30nm+ off Devon) last two days (17-18th) and reports 1000's of Manx Shearwaters out there (they are usually a bit closer to shore). Also a couple of Balearic Shearwaters on the 17th and a Minke Whale on the 18th.

Posted July 19th, 2016 at 4:13 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News


First autumn passerine migrants passing through in the shape of two Willow Warblers at West Soar. Also 8 Swifts east along the cliffs and post-breeding numbers of 140 Linnets. Great Green Bush Cricket at Starehole ponds. On Sunday evening Hobby over South Pool Creek in Kingsbridge Estuary.

Posted July 19th, 2016 at 2:55 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Broadsands Gulls

A mid morning visit to Broadsands on the dropping tide gave 14 Greater Black Backed Gull, one ringed reading 6AA8 that has been recorded in previous years.

At least three Mediterranean Gulls and one possible hybrid or non adult 

Two Cirl Bunting flew across the car park, Greenfinch,  Goldfinch and a small number of House Martins.

Back home at South Brent, Green Woodpecker, Raven and Chiffchaff and yesterday gave the first Nuthatch of the year on the garden feeders.

Posted July 19th, 2016 at 12:23 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Monday 18th July 2016


91 med gulls tonight.59 ads,16ss,15fs,juv,.Most likely to have been more as many hundreds still anting.17:20-18:15.

Posted July 18th, 2016 at 10:34 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Powderham Marsh (Exminster)

15 members of DB attended the morning walk from the RSPB car park to the Viewing Point.  Low flying Swallows both young and mature came within feet as we followed the route across the fields.  A close flying Hobby and sightings of a juv. Whinchat (and possibly a second bird) were most noteworthy with young of many species listed including Reed Warbler, Goldfinch, Coot, Wood Pigeon and Canada Goose.  A single Greylag Goose and Lapwing were scoped at a distance but the scrapes were generally lacking in birds.  Reed Bunting and Whitethroat also present but most birds were keeping hidden in the hedgerows.  Thanks to Geoff Green for leading us.

Posted July 18th, 2016 at 8:41 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News


An evening walk around the reserve was rewarded with the second sighting of Grey Heron this week, and then a feeding group of Gulls (must have been plenty of flying ants) included an adult Mediterranean Gull.

Posted July 18th, 2016 at 8:05 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Northam Ant-Fest!

Over the garden this afternoon there was a mixed flock of Herring, Black-headed and Mediterranean Gulls enjoying an Ant-Fest. High above them there were 100-150 Swifts enjoying those flying ants that had transcended to a higher plane. Sadly no Hobby to complete the food chain!

Posted July 18th, 2016 at 3:41 pm by Martin Unwin in Bird News


Ive found this little chap 'down on the upside` next to its squashed sibling in fore street Ilfracombe I couldnt leave it 2B a HERGU's breakfast. No way of getting it back in its nest.  Ive soaked some mealworms for it but on closer inspection it has absolutly no fat on its breast at all so I'm guessing its parents have been predated & is already starving. Hopefully launch time 7.30 am.  

Posted July 18th, 2016 at 1:55 am by Martin Thorne in Bird News

Sunday 17th July 2016


2 Cattle Egrets seen this morning behind the ringing hut by Keith Grant a couple of his photos here:

Cattle Egret Slapton July 17th 2016 Cattle Egret Slapton July 17 2016

Cattle Egret Slapton July 2016

Posted July 17th, 2016 at 9:32 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

Morte Point

Morte Point @ high tide slack water, in the gaps in Sea fog,  3 Storm petrels were feeding on the static fishing gear bouy ropes. 20 manx shearwaters inc a few on the water in the tide race. 4 puffins 2 med gulls 6 gannets & a few other auks all flying west. Most of the wheatears are now feeding young.

Posted July 17th, 2016 at 8:49 pm by Martin Thorne MWG in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

Two Sand Martins among 30+ Swallows and c10  Swifts. On the pool, just 11 Curlews and 1 Whimbrel (21 and 3 respectively yesterday), Little Egrets now up to 14 and a Mediterranean Gull (a tatty 1st ie 2nd cy) bird with the Black-headed Gulls which included 3 juvs. A pair of Shelduck with 5 juvs and another adult with 1 juv.

The Med' Gull overflew my house (Mount Gould) later and two others (ad and 2nd-s / 3rd cy) were over here yesterday "anting".

Posted July 17th, 2016 at 8:46 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Lyme Bay Boat trip

This mornings boat trip out of Brixham into Lyme bay going 6 miles out gave us sightings of Sunfish, 96 Manx Shearwater, 1 Fulmar, 2 Gannet and the usual Herring and Great Black backed Gull. 3 Harbour Porpoise.

Manx Shearwaters Lyme Bay 17 July 2016

If interested call 07866202576, we run every Sunday morning

Posted July 17th, 2016 at 7:45 pm by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 15:00 till 18:15

A good afternoon with 1 spotted redshank among 300+ redshank , 12+ greenshanks, 8+ common sandpipers,  1 green sandpiper, 420+ curlew, 61+ whimbrel, 9 bar tailed godwits, 200+ black tailed godwits, 10+ little egrets, 4 oystercatchers, 300+ black headed gulls.

Posted July 17th, 2016 at 7:43 pm by Keith Birchall in Bird News

Saturday 16th July 2016

Averton Gifford 15.07.16

10 common sandpiper last night visible at end of tidal road 

Posted July 16th, 2016 at 10:42 pm by Graham Devine in Bird News

parakeet roost

30 plus  RINGNECK PARAKEET in Central Park

Posted July 16th, 2016 at 9:55 pm by barry in Bird News

Berry Head

1 juv Yellow-legged Gull following trawler in toward Brixham at 7pm. 1 Yellow Wagtail flying around headland and grounded briefly, 1 Yellowhammer (normally passage at Berry Hd). a Pod of 30-40 fast moving Dolphins(probably Common) 2 miles SE of the head and 2 Harbour Porpoise of the headland 

Posted July 16th, 2016 at 9:34 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News


52 med gulls on rocks behind cricket ground.40 ads,6ss,6fs17:00-17:30

Posted July 16th, 2016 at 6:33 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Lower Tamar Lake

Sightings for this morning done in very heavy mizzle.

1 Willow Tit juv (car park), 1 Nuthatch, 3 Greenfinch, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker (m) juv, 2 Coal Tit, 2 Willow Warbler, 1 Sedge Warbler, 4 Great Crested Grebe (one on a nest), 8 Tufted Duck, 3 Canada, 1 Kingfisher, 1 Cormorant, 1 Grey Wagtail juv, 1 Blackcap, 2 Swallows.

Posted July 16th, 2016 at 3:36 pm by ROD MUDGE in Bird News

Friday 15th July 2016

Goodrington Torbay

3 juvenile Yellow-legged Gulls two on the beach one on the boating lake

Yellow-l Gull2Goodrington150716ML Yellow-l Gull3Goodrington150716ML Yellow-l Gull2Goodrington150716ML Yellow-l Gull1Goodrington150716ML 

Posted July 15th, 2016 at 9:46 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

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