Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

2019 Descriptions still outstanding

Many thanks to all observers that submitted their records for 2019. However there are still a number of records that require descriptions before they can appear in the Bird Report.

If you were fortunate enough to find (or see) any of these birds below please could you submit a description to the County Recorder Many thanks, stay safe.

Alpine Swift, Dawlish 11 Jun  Hooded Crow, Baggy Point 10 May
Barred Warbler, Thurlestone 30 Aug Long-tailed Skua, Dawlish Warren 11 Oct
Caspian Gull, Thurlestone, 08 Feb Purple Heron, Slapton Ley 07 May
Caspian Gull, Topsham 02 Aug Sabine's Gull, Thurlestone 14 Aug
Cory's Shearwater, Berry Head 19 Jul Serin (2), Harrowbeer 19 Apr
Glossy Ibis, Otter Est 11-13 Mar Tree Sparrow (2), Berry Head 20 Mar


Posted May 2nd at 3:27 pm by Kevin Rylands in General Birding

Coronavirus update - Daily exercise and Bird Hides

Please be aware that in line with Government guidelines on non-essential travel and social distancing, the Devon Birds hides at Beesands, Fernworthy and Roadford, in addition to hides elsewhere in the County including Bowling Green Marsh, Dawlish Warren and Seaton Wetlands are closed until further notice. Whilst some people may be fortunate enough to be within walking/cycling distance of these sites, others should not be making special journeys to visit these areas at this time. Thank you for your co-operation and stay safe.

Please follow NHS guidelines:

Posted April 16th at 12:04 pm by Mike Daniels in General Birding

Sightings page guidelines & rare breeding bird posting restrictions

We welcome contributions from Devon Birds members and the general public. Please follow the guidelines on this page if you have something to post on the blog, remembering to use the relevant subject.

Please post responsibly, never post details of rare breeding, or winter roosts of vulnerable, species. If you are unsure of what to - or not - to post, there are guidelines on the restrictions  here.

Please note:-

1. That Wood Warbler in probable breeding areas should also not now be published

2.  Posts which breach these guidelines may not be published at all. Editors do this job on a voluntary basis and cannot commit to editing out rare breeding bird information in posts which which include wider sightings. Please help us to avoid the need to delete or not admit posts. Thanks.

For help with ID email photos to

Posted January 8th at 9:12 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding


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 General Birding

Monday 13th November 2017

East Budleigh

Finally caught up with the possible Italian Sparrow today at 8:30am. It was on the roof of the shed to the right of the feeder that has been set up on Wynards Road. Lots of bird life there to keep me entertained while I was waiting with 28 other species recorded. Question with this bird is will it be accepted? For me the plumage looks very good but without DNA it’s hard to say 100% and it could simply be a House X Tree. It would make a great addition to the British list though as we adopt IOC from January and they treat it as a distinct species. I guess you could debate that all day too? None the less an interesting bird and a big well done must be given to Chris Townsend for his effort in sorting out viewing and taking in to account the residents needs.

Posted November 13th, 2017 at 8:16 pm by Spencer Dicks in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Friday 10th November 2017

Countess Wear

10 Cattle egrets came into roost at the sewage works / old sludge beds. Arrived in a group of 6 and a group of 4. Also 2 Little egrets. 51 Cormorants roosting on the Countess Wear pylon.

Posted November 10th, 2017 at 7:19 pm by Martin Elcoate in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

R Otter - Glossy Ibis

Glossy Ibis flew over us about 11 am this morning.  Tried to fly against the N wind, but appeared to give up, circled round White Bridge, then flew S down the river.  We tried to relocate it later on the scrapes, but no sign.  Only other bird of particular note was a perched Kingfisher, giving stunning views from White Bridge..

Posted November 10th, 2017 at 2:14 pm by Colin Randall in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts


A trip up to Haldon Forrest this morning with Keith Male gave two Brambling feeding on the roadside with a flock of Chaffinch.

We eventually caught up with numerous birders and the reported Hawfinch's the largest flock seen consisting of 16 birds.

Lots of Goldcrest, Jay and one Nuthatch.

On the way home on the road to Chudleigh near Milestone Cross a Goshawk flew across a field as we drove by.


Posted November 10th, 2017 at 1:45 pm by Steve Hopper in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Slapton Ley

Bittern seen twice in Higher Ley from Slapton Bridge between 07:00-07:40. Little Grebe Graveyard Pool and another 15 in Ireland Bay. 5 Firecrests between the bridge and Quarry. Offshore a Great Northern Diver and 13 Common Scoters.

Posted November 10th, 2017 at 11:04 am by Perry Sanders in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Thursday 9th November 2017

Torbay, Three Beaches Headland

1 Black-throated Diver present with 2 Great Northern Divers this afternoon off Three Beaches Headland Goodrington. There were an additional 4 Great Northern Divers, 4 Great Crested Grebes, 10 Eider & 8 Common Scoter.

Posted November 9th, 2017 at 2:38 pm by Mike Langman in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Clennon Valley

The Dusky Warbler was present around the willows of the top lake first thing this morning but very quickly moved across into the bracken going up the hill. It then made a rapid move through undergrowth (I could track it by its call) until lost some 400-450m away from the ponds, I don't think its coming back from that point!

Video of it calling on the move.. 

Cetti's Warbler still present around the lakes.

Posted November 9th, 2017 at 2:36 pm by Mike Langman in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Wednesday 8th November 2017

Soar & South Huish

Wood Pigeon movement at Soar this morning consisted of c14k birds generally going west. I Only saw 2 Stock Doves amongst them but many flocks distant. Also over: c30 Chaffinches, Siskin & 2 Bramblings. Otherwise, Snipe, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Firecrest, 3 Goldcrests & Bullfinch.

On South Huish Marsh, a juv Spoonbill, 5 Cattle Egrets & Black-tailed Godwit.

Posted November 8th, 2017 at 5:04 pm by Pete Aley in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Clennon Lakes Paignton

A stroll around Clennon Lakes was livened up by some quiet 'tacking' coming from a willow island on lake 2 - exactly where I found a Dusky Warbler in the 1990's. After what seemed like an age the bird popped up on the sunny side of the willows, low, just above the water - indeed it was another another Dusky Warbler mine and the lakes third record!

It was not as vocal as previous birds but did call a lot as it moved from one location to another, showing best from the footpath with the sun behind me. Beware there is also a Cettis Warbler in the same area (much more rufous than the Dusky Warbler).

 Dusky Warbler Clennon Lakes Nov 8th 2017 ML  Dusky Warbler sketch Clennon Lakes Nov 8th 2017 ML Dusky Warbler Clennon Lakes Nov 8th 2017 ML 

Posted November 8th, 2017 at 1:56 pm by Mike Langman in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Older Posts in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts →

← Newer Posts in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts