General Birding

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  Posts which breach these guidelines may not be published at all.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

Thursday 14th December 2017

Goosemoor RSPB - 14/12/17

6 bearded tit (inc. at least 2 Males) at 10.00AM, showing very well in reedbed closest to the River Clyst (heard in same place 08/12/17)... also 6 Greenshank, 34 Snipe, 7 Avocet, Kingfisher, 3 Cetti's warbler, 7 Water rail...

Posted December 14th, 2017 at 5:53 pm by Nick Patel in General Birding

River Taw, Sticklepath

Male Goosander with 5 shelduck and 6 mallard in River Taw, near Sticklepath at 3pm. 

Posted December 14th, 2017 at 5:43 pm by Paul Bearman in General Birding


What a terrific morning on Marine Parade, Preston, Paignton, cold but full of surprises. A huge flock pof gannet feeding out in the bay  on anchovy's? same as last year, one unknown shearwater diving among them, also one great northern diver and an unknown grebe which I'm sure someone will be able to identify as well as another unknown bird flying overhead. Top cap it all there were also two seals just off the shore plus about 8 or 10 oyster cathchers and the same number of turnstones feeding around my feet. Just goes to show you don't have to travel far for excitement.

Posted December 14th, 2017 at 11:17 am by Philip L. Fairclough in General Birding

Wednesday 13th December 2017


1 Firecrest, Bossell Park, Buckfastleigh this afternoon; in the same small maple tree as last week's Yellow-browed Warbler.

Posted December 13th, 2017 at 9:13 pm by Andy Smith in General Birding


Must be spring - Great Tits have been calling the last few days' although I didn't see any today. Cetti's  Warbler calling too. A Kingfisher has been in the reserve the last couple of days. Out on the scrape today a Shelduck a Water Pipit and a Greenshank. No Godwits.

Posted December 13th, 2017 at 8:03 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Plym Estuary

On the pool at high tide - 54 Curlews, 8 Oystercatchjers, 3 Greenshanks & c130 Redshanks. On the estuary, Common Sandpiper, Kingfisher, 20 Grey Herons and c100 Dunlins.

Posted December 13th, 2017 at 6:21 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Stover Country Park

17 Goosanders - 7 male and 10 female types this lunchtime. 1 male Tufted Duck. 1 Great Crested Grebe.

Posted December 13th, 2017 at 1:35 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Fulham lake ivybridge

Eight female goosanders together  this morning at 0.800.

Posted December 13th, 2017 at 8:23 am by Patrick hawkins in General Birding

Tuesday 12th December 2017

Cowick Street Hawfinches

Two Hawfinch in tree tops for half an hour in St Thomas Churchyard on Cowick Street, Exeter. Also 9 Greenfinch, 8 Redwing & a few Chaffinch 

Posted December 12th, 2017 at 6:12 pm by Steve Cox in General Birding


Feeding on sunflower hearts in our Stoke Rivers garden.

Posted December 12th, 2017 at 6:02 pm by Karen Sims & John Towers in General Birding

Woodbury Common

A flock of well over a hundred Reed Bunting a few hundred yards north of Woodbury Castle at midday. 

Posted December 12th, 2017 at 5:25 pm by David McKeown in General Birding


From Oyster Cove, 10 Common Scoter. From Preston Seafront 13 Great Crested Grebe in a raft, snoozing, 2 Great Northern Divers hunting very close to shore, 20+ Gannet, 8 Razorbiills, one of which was nearly all white with just black head markings. Unusual. Very good flat sea today.

Posted December 12th, 2017 at 4:13 pm by Steph Murphy in General Birding

Southdown Farm, Bolberry

Good numbers today highlight being 63 Yellowhammer. Also: 4 Snipe, Sparrowhawk, 230 Woodpigeon, 440 Skylark, 17 Song Thrush, 160 Rook, 93 House Sparrow, 200 Linnet & 4 Reed Bunting.

Posted December 12th, 2017 at 2:06 pm by Rob Macklin in General Birding

Monday 11th December 2017

Redwings and fieldfare at River Yeo fields, Crediton.

On the River Yeo walk at Crediton between Fordton and Salmonhutch: 2 goldfinch charms, lots of blue tits. Very close views of c.30 redwings along the length of lane between railway crossing at Great-Parks Farm, Fordton and the first river field aka: Bullmarsh field (SX 83490 99200). Some redwing and 2 fieldfare were spotted along with blackbirds feeding in the fields north side of path by River Yeo (SX 83150 99105).

Posted December 11th, 2017 at 6:20 pm by Andrew Head in General Birding

Escot Park, Talaton, East Devon

10 members attended the last of our East Devon Branch field meetings this year and 20 later sat down to Christmas lunch.  In spite of the cold and poor light a good number of birds were found. Highlights being c300 Golden Plover and c130 Lapwing in the fields near the A30, (south east of Escot, a traditional area for these species).  Redwings were present in hundreds and a lesser number of Fieldfare in The Orchard.  A distant raptor was believed to be a  Peregrine and 3 Stock Dove flew over.

Geoff Green, our Branch Chairman wished everyone a Happy Christmas and on behalf of Geoff and the Branch Committee, could I thank everyone for supporting our Branch in 2017.  The 2018 Programme of fieldtrips and other events is now to be found on the Devon Birds website if you go to 'News' > Branch Events.

Happy Christmas from me also. 

Posted December 11th, 2017 at 4:18 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in General Birding

Sunday 10th December 2017

Exminster Marshes

The marshes were impressive, especially for waders, over this morning's high tide, probably including some refugees from Dawlish Warren, where the strong winds must have made it an unpleasant place to roost. There were 60-65 Grey Plover, c25 Bar-tailed Godwits and 12 Knot - I think the first Knot I've ever seen here. James Diamond had counted over 1000 Black-tailed Godwits and 500 Dunlin, plus there were lots of Lapwings, a few Golden Plover, dozens of Redshanks and Curlews and a single Ruff (which was also present last Wednesday). c30 Pintail was a good total for the marshes (the estuary towards Lympstone must have been very choppy today). Brent Geese were up to c300. Not surprisingly, small birds were keeping low, though 2 Cetti's Warblers showed themselves briefly.

Posted December 10th, 2017 at 5:55 pm by Dave Smallshire in General Birding

Plym Estuary & Saltram

2 Jack Snipe, 2 Snipe, 7 Oystercatchers, 110+ Dunlins, 27 Shelducks, 4 Greenshanks and a Green Woodpecker. 

Posted December 10th, 2017 at 4:19 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Saturday 9th December 2017

Firecrest Plymouth

Firecrest seen in the Richer Sounds car park, Exeter Street.11a.m.

Posted December 9th, 2017 at 6:42 pm by Stephen Turner in General Birding

Haldon Crossbills

Seen in trees just south of the "Go Ape" zip wires. 6 seen reports from other birders were of up to 30.

Video -

Common Crossbill Common Crossbill 

Common Crossbill                                              Common Crossbill

Posted December 9th, 2017 at 5:44 pm by Martin Rooney in General Birding


One firecrest in the garden this morning. Two were seen on 30/11. One on the 26/11 and two on the 25/11. 

Posted December 9th, 2017 at 5:27 pm by Chris E in General Birding

Plym Estuary

A pair of Goosanders at the top end early afternoon plus 3 Little Grebes. Also 3 Goldcrests.

Posted December 9th, 2017 at 5:01 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

09-12-17 Black Redstart (Female) Ford Park Cemetery

After a 2 hour search in the cemetery and just about to give up, the Female Black Redstart showed very well for about half an hour then disappeared again, no signs of the Male. No Redwings and a few Gold crests amongst the usual Tits ect.


Posted December 9th, 2017 at 3:17 pm by Greg Bradbury in General Birding

Morning in the garden.

As Christmas is coming and it's so mild,I cut the grass in the garden today,  plenty of birds, blackbirds, great tits, blue tits Marillow tits ( not sure. Which) as my identity skills are not that finely honed.chaffinch,greenfinch, goldfinch, dunnock, wren, Robins,  mistle thrush and best of all for me 3 female bullfinch and singular male pheasant and woodpidgeon.

Posted December 9th, 2017 at 2:00 pm by Philip worth in General Birding

Friday 8th December 2017

Noss Mayo

Blackcap.m. and Goldcrest in the garden both enjoying the fat blocks.

In the creek Greenshank and Redshank.

Posted December 8th, 2017 at 5:37 pm by Jeremy Spooner in General Birding

Cook worthy Forest

A walk around this underwatched part of NE Devon this afternoon produced 8+ Crossbill, feeding on a very good crop of cones.

Posted December 8th, 2017 at 5:16 pm by Roger Doble in General Birding

Upper and Lower Tamar Lake

Upper Tamar Lake this morning,
1 Little Egret, 1m Goosander, 5 Great Crested Grebe, 4 Cormorant, 3 Grey Heron, 2 Snipe, 2 Redwing,, c150 Canada Geese.

Lower Tamar Lake,
9 Goosander 6m 3f, 9 Tufted Duck, 10 Great Crested Grebe, 2 Grey Heron, 1 Cormorant.

Posted December 8th, 2017 at 4:39 pm by Rod Mudge in General Birding

Plym Estuary

Back to reality after India - quite a few birds on the pool at high tide. Wigeon 6, Common Sandpiper 2, Kingfisher, Redshank c130, Dunlin 30+, Curlew 52, Greenshank 4, Little Grebe 6, Grey Heron 14 and female Red-crested Pochard.

Posted December 8th, 2017 at 4:12 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Kingsteignton Thursday AM

Approximately thirty redwings and one fieldfare feeding on hawthorn berries on cyclepath between racecourse and railway line. Plus good views of kingfisher from canal bridge.

Posted December 8th, 2017 at 9:23 am by Patrick Case in General Birding

Fremington Quay

1Spoonbill at the mouth of Fremington Pill at 4pm.  5 Little Egrets flew over the Pill. 

Posted December 8th, 2017 at 8:30 am by Paul Bearman in General Birding

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