General Birding

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

Saturday 14th October 2017

Dawlish Warren - 14/10/17

12.00... 113 brents, 3 sandwich tern, 7 stonechat, drake common scoter (close in), (common seal)

Posted October 14th, 2017 at 3:58 pm by nick patel in General Birding

Friday 13th October 2017

Ford Park Cemetery

2 Firecrests this afternoon and also - in Central Park - 5 Goldcrests and a Chiffchaff.

Posted October 13th, 2017 at 6:27 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Thursday 12th October 2017

exminster marshes - 12/10/17

16.00pm from turf path.... fem merlin, juv marsh harrier, peregrine, 2 stonechat, 2 raven, 6 siskin (over)

Posted October 12th, 2017 at 9:39 pm by nick patel in General Birding


 Leeden Tor. 100 + Golden Plover, Snipe also Skylark.

Posted October 12th, 2017 at 6:30 pm by Mave Goddard in General Birding


I was in the reserve when the shooting started. Unfortunately for them, the Canada Geese started flying out of the Great Field and over the Marshes, reserve and Wrafton Pond. I couldn't see but the shooting certainly reached a frenzy as they went over Sherpa.

Did see Peregrine and later this afternoon a Sparrowhawk over the reserve. 3 Ravens were around this morning too.

Posted October 12th, 2017 at 5:39 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Seaton Wetlands Thursday 12th

Four ruff at Colyton Common.  Also heard but not seen - two cettis warblers - two water rail.

Posted October 12th, 2017 at 3:51 pm by Patrick Case in General Birding

Southdown Farm & Soar Mill Valley

Amazingly quiet in these warm conditions. Highlights just 2 Sparrowhawk, 2 Peregrine, Great Spotted Woodpecker moving west, Skylark 150 - most grounded but some moving west, 70 Meadow Pipit, Swallow, 14 White Wagtail, 2 Goldcrest & 85 Linnet.

Posted October 12th, 2017 at 3:12 pm by Rob Macklin in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh 11th Oct

Early morning yesterday on rising tide. On Clyst, Bar-tailed Godwit 5, Grey Plover 3, Knot 1, Redshank 160. On Bowling Green Teal 480, Wigeon 105, Pintail 80 & Shoveler 15. Also 2 Ruff with in coming Blackwits. Finally on Goosemoor 31 Greenshank, 25 Dunlin & juv Curlew Sandpiper. A few Chiffchaff & Goldcrest around marsh and 70+ Goldfinch.

Posted October 12th, 2017 at 7:22 am by Steve Cox in General Birding

Tuesday 10th October 2017


1over main road between winkleigh and Beaford north Devon close to Stafford moor fishing lake junction at 17:30

Posted October 10th, 2017 at 9:50 pm by Robert Marshall in General Birding

Crossbills Near Kennick Reservoir

Large numbers of crossbills in pine woods near Kennick Reservoir.

Posted October 10th, 2017 at 8:25 pm by Samuel Gray in General Birding

Plym Estuary

in addition to Pete's sightings 2 Jay 141 Redshank 1 Grey Wagtail 11 Heron 2 Med Gulls 1 Kingfisher

Posted October 10th, 2017 at 7:09 pm by Roger Backway in General Birding

Shipley Bridge tot he Avon dam ~ South Brent

Afternoon walk from Shipley Bridge to the Avon dam early this afternoon once the worst of the misty wet weather had passed.

21 species identified ~ including Mistle Thrush, Buzzard 3, Kestrel, Dipper 2, Warbler sp, Mallard on the reservoir, Meadow Pipits 15+, Green Woodpecker 2, Stonechats, Goldcrest, Long Tailed Tit 10+.

High light was the briefest view of a Ring Ouzel.

Posted October 10th, 2017 at 4:41 pm by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Glossy Ibis

Glossy Ibis spotted yesterday whilst driving down to Fremington Quay feeding near the bridge that you drive over in the river that joins the estuary.

Posted October 10th, 2017 at 4:33 pm by Simon in General Birding

Plym Estuary & Saltram

Two Green Woodpeckers, Stonechat, 2 Ring-necked Parakeets, Chiffchaff, Kingfisher, 27 Turnstones, 24+ Curlews, 2 Ringed Plovers, Little Grebe, Mandarin Duck and 3 Roe Deer.

Posted October 10th, 2017 at 3:42 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding


136 skittish Black-tailed Godwits and 4 Ruff out on the scrape this morning. And where exactly were all the Goldfinches (about 50) that I saw in the reserve this morning, when we were ringing there on Sunday?

As the sun peeped out one Red Admiral, 1 Peacock and 2 Speckled Wood butterflies on the wing.

Also of note and they've been out for a few days now: Primroses!

Posted October 10th, 2017 at 1:36 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Monday 9th October 2017

Bowling green marsh

Watched from 07:30 till 12:30

Firecrest still with goldcrests and let nag tailed tit group on the hill going down to the hide 

At the hide 111+ pintail , 800+ teal, 600+ wigeon, 1 peregrine,  3 ruff , waders were starting to build up when just after 08:30 the waders and ducks all went up just as the demolition of a house behind the marsh started soon the marsh was empty , the demolition machinery had caused panic among the birds apparently the new build will be over the next 18 months so lots of disturbance expected unless something can be done to stop the disturbance over the high tides.

around the viewing platform 1 kingfisher, 1 Cetti's warbler showed well , 8+ goldcrests, 3 chiffchaffs, 1 blackcap 


Posted October 9th, 2017 at 8:58 pm by Keith Birchall in General Birding

Ivybridge 2 Moors Way gate to Piles Copse

Walked along field wall boundary to Piles Copse. 4 Fieldfare; 3 with a few Redwings, another Fieldfare nearer the Copse. Several Mistle Thrush.  A Green Woodpecker with 20+ Chaffinch. 1 Grey Wagtail at a brook, Linnets and Stonechats in fields. Near the Copse a Wheatear with Meadow Pipits. At the Copse a Dipper and a few Tits but quiet except for Ravens and a Buzzard above the Copse.

Posted October 9th, 2017 at 7:28 pm by richard teague in General Birding

Dawlish Warren

12 members of DB (East Devon Branch) attended the fieldtrip led by Colin Randall.  40 + species were counted during the morning with a high tide turning as we reached the hide.  Earlier a Sparrow Hawk was chased over the car park by a number of small birds, a pair of Bullfinch and a Gt-s-Woodpecker found in the entrance trees.  Several Stonechat were present along the dunes and a Blackcap and Whitethroat seen by some. A flock of c100 Goldfinch were feeding in low vegetation and a single Wheatear seen on the golf course. 234 Brent Geese were counted on The Bight with both Light and Dark Bellied together.  18 Grey Plover were resting on the island plus a few Wigeon, a number of Oystercatcher, 2 Dunlin and a Snipe. (Did someone say a Knot was also present briefly?).  At a distance 2 Sandwich Tern were seen on the estuary, 6 Turnstone were resting on a boat, the Slavonian Grebe was off Cockwood together with high numbers of Wigeon and Curlew below the railway line and numbers of Great Black-backed Gulls and more Oystercatcher at the far side of The Bight.

Posted October 9th, 2017 at 4:14 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in General Birding

East Soar

Not much going on this morning - Red-legged Partridge, 60 Skylark, 2 Swallow, 14 Meadow Pipit, 29 Robin, Wheatear, 6 Song Thrush, Blackcap, 7 Chiffchaff, 12 Goldcrest, 3 Long-tailed Tit, 52 Goldfinch & 22 Yellowhammer. No sign of any easterlies!

Posted October 9th, 2017 at 3:56 pm by Rob Macklin in General Birding

More Skern/ring-reading

Richard's Curlew is one from the mid-Wales Ringing Group project, I am glad someone's nailed this individual as I see multiple birds from this project at the Skern but only ever get a successful read of one of them (different 2 letter code).

Anyone who sees a Curlew (or Whimbrel) marked in the way depicted, email sightings/photos to Tony Cross at avcross[at]

Mike your Curlew sounds interesting if it is indeed entirely different to Richard's. Ring reading at Skern is most rewarding at high tide viewing from the car, best of luck!

Posted October 9th, 2017 at 12:00 pm by Lowell Mills in General Birding


In response to Mike Luckson's Sunday post.. I took these photos on the 5/10/2017 at Skern.

Curlew Curlew
Curlew                                                                  Curlew

Posted October 9th, 2017 at 10:14 am by richard yeats in General Birding


Dropped the first seed of the autumn for the Cirl Buntings followed by a scan of the sea: 1 Great Crested Grebe only bird of note and then the marsh: 2 Firecrest, 3 Goldcrest and 2 Chiffchaff.

Firecrest Broadsands 09 Oct 2017 ML  firecrest Broadsands 09 Oct 2017 ML

Photos of one of the Firecrests

Posted October 9th, 2017 at 9:17 am by Mike Langman in General Birding

Sunday 8th October 2017

Skern 7/10/17

Spent 1hr at Skern on a very low spring tide, spotted a ringed Curlew, a very long way off, looks to have a red over blue maybe pale green ring, has anyone any idea on where it may have been ringed

Posted October 8th, 2017 at 8:23 pm by Mike Luckson in General Birding


Ringing in the reserve this morning we were able to keep an eye on the movement of Black-tailed Godwits on the scrape. About 136 with at least 3 Ruff and a Little Egret.

Ringing was rewarding too: 1 each of Cetti's Warbler, Wood Pigeon, Song Thrush, Kingfisher, Grey Wagtail, Coal Tit, Goldfinch, 2 each of Wren,  Bullfinch, Chaffinch, Dunnock, 3 Goldcrests and Great-spotted Woodpeckers, 5 Blackbirds, 8 Long-tailed Tits and 10 Blue Tits. 26 retraps too including another Woodpecker.

Posted October 8th, 2017 at 6:28 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Plym estuary / Saltram

1015 - 1245  On the falling tide: 

10 Little grebe, 5 Grey heron, c130 Redshank, 2 Greenshank, 3 Common sandpiper, 3 Little grebe, 20 Curlew, 1 Red crested pochard (female) probably the one from Weighbridge Cottage.

Posted October 8th, 2017 at 3:00 pm by Alan Livsey in General Birding

East and Middle Soar

am. Quiet overall. Highlights: 2 Ring Ouzels (1female and1 juv), 1 Woodlark (heard overhead), 1 Whinchat, 1 Wheatear, several Chiffchaffs and Goldcrests, dozens of Swallows, a few House Martins and ca10 Siskins (overhead).

Posted October 8th, 2017 at 2:15 pm by Andy Smith in General Birding

Skern (ring reading)

After high tide, British-ringed Black-headed Gull (yellow ring with black code starting '2') and Dutch-ringed Oystercatcher (green ring above knee, coded colour ring on each tarsus!) successfully read today and details sent off. 15 Brent Geese and as below a good mix of ages of Med Gull the other highlights. 

Posted October 8th, 2017 at 1:52 pm by Lowell Mills in General Birding

Berry Head

Fine, still, clear and sunny morning around Headland: 1 Firecrest in Quarry, 12 Goldcrest, 17 Chiffchaffs, 14 Blackcap, 1 Coal Tit, 4 Stonechat, 18 Blackbirds. First returning Guillemots (just 4) back on cliff face this morning

Overhead: 31 Meadow Pipits, 22 'alba' Wagtails, 57 Skylark, 13 Siskin, 4 Song Thrush, 55 Goldfinch, 15 Chaffinch, 10 Linnet,4 Swallow. 

Posted October 8th, 2017 at 11:32 am by Mike Langman in General Birding


Further to Lowell Mills observation on Ruff there have been up to 17 at this spot since 1st  October. This is an unusual place to see Ruff and this is the first time I have seen them here in the 11 years I have lived in Instow.

Posted October 8th, 2017 at 10:03 am by Mike Glover in General Birding

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