Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Missing Devon rarity records 2018 UPDATE

We have had a good response to the request for missing descriptions for a number of ‘A’ species reported in 2018. Thank you to those who have made the effort to provide these.

However some descriptions remain outstanding meaning, 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 but the report deadline is pressing.

If you saw any of 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.

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 White Egret Exminster Marshes 30 March
Great White Egret Exmouth 06 May
Honey-buzzard Dartmoor 21-22 May
Pectoral Sandpiper Upper Tamar Lake 13 August
Rose-coloured Starling Beesands 27-28 August
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


If you follow our Blog but are not currently a member of Devon Birds please consider joining Devon Birds to help us 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 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

Tuesday 7th February 2017

South Huish

Whilst watching the 2 Eurasian (or is it Russian ?) White-Fronted Geese and distant Water Pipit on the marsh, an Iceland Gull (second year) flew in and landed in front of us on the water, then promptly flew off , out to sea, after about a minute ! Just enough time for a record image. Hopefully it might hang around.



Posted February 7th, 2017 at 5:50 pm by Tony Marchese in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Monday 6th February 2017

Staverton WTW

Yellow browed warbler still present and showing well at 10.00 a.m. Also 8 Chiffchaffs.

Posted February 6th, 2017 at 11:18 am by Douglas Stannard in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts


A fantastic mirror like sea in Torbay and leaden sky made for perfect viewing conditions: 9 Eider, 102 Great Crested Grebes, 3 Black-necked Grebes, 1 Slavoinian Grebe, 2 Black-throated Divers, 5 Great Northern Divers, 1 Mediterranean Gull (ad) and 1 Lapwing.

Posted February 6th, 2017 at 10:56 am by Mike Langman in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Sunday 5th February 2017


Couldn't find the Red-necked Grebe but the Black-throated Diver was still present mid-afternoon along with two Black-necked Grebes.

Posted February 5th, 2017 at 5:47 pm by Will Salmon in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

White Fronted Geese ~ South Huish

Aveton Gifford,  South Efford Marsh ~ Kingfisher 2, Mallard 60+ Teal 30+, Wigeon 85+, Shell duck 2, Little Egret 4, Redshank 7, Greenshank 3, Little Grebe 1, Curlew 24, Black Headed Gull 110+, Black Tailed Godwit 1, Moorhen 3, Lesser Black Back Gull 2, Greater Black Back Gull 3, Common Sandpiper 1, Pied Wagtail 1, Grey Wagtail 1, Song Thrush 2.


South Milton, South Huish Marsh ~ White Fronted Goose 2, Canadian Goose 50+, Water Pipit 1, Greater Black Back Gull 2, Lesser Black Back Gull 4,  Little Egret 1, Moorhen 3, Kestrel 1 , Buzzard 1, good numbers of Teal and Wigeon.

Back home at South Brent Nuthatch and two female Siskins on the feeders.

Posted February 5th, 2017 at 4:24 pm by Steve Hopper in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Saturday 4th February 2017

Desert Wheatear, Thurlstone

The Desert Wheatear at Thurlstone today.

Posted February 4th, 2017 at 9:14 pm by Samuel Gray in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Torbay Coastal

Marine Parade, Paignton ~ 24 Turnstone, 30 Oyster Catcher, a Great Crested Grebe flew past towards Goodrington and a very distant view of what I believe was a large flock of Scoter duck which were lost from view once they landed on the sea.

Goodrington beach ~ Drake Eider Duck.

Broadsands / Elberry ~A counted flock of 110 Great Crested Grebe that were in company with 5 Velvet Scoter. Two seperate Black Necked Grebe, 3 Razorbill, Eider duck, 6 Fulmar, Cormorant and Shag.


Brixham Break Water ~ Raven, 3+ Guillemot, 7+ Razorbill, 2 Turnstone, 7 Purple Sandpiper and 2 Rock Pipit.

Berry Head ~ The highlight were 7 Harbour Porpoise including one calf that at times had Gannet over them diving for fish, 2 Rock Pipit, movement of Guillemot, good numbers of Fulmar showing.


From the hide the Guillemot colony had well over 500 birds on the cliff and 15+ Fulmar, female Sparrow Hawk overhead.


Posted February 4th, 2017 at 4:54 pm by Steve Hopper in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Teignmouth Seafront

The Bonapartes Gull is on Teignmouth seafront this morning close-in flying up and down the beach. Not much else though.

Posted February 4th, 2017 at 11:31 am by David Cope in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts


The Red-necked Grebe was again back in Elberry Cove this morning also 1 Black-necked Grebe and 1 Great Northern Diver. Over toward Goodrington 128 Great Crested Grebes and 5 Velvet Scoter.

Posted February 4th, 2017 at 10:54 am by Mike Langman in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts


Yellow-browed warbler still present at the sewage works

Posted February 4th, 2017 at 10:34 am by Henry Trollope in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Wednesday 1st February 2017


A morning visit to the residential estate at Heathfield gave twelve Waxwings which proved to be very mobile around the estate as well as making the odd visit to the usual site on the A38, while on the estate the birds again observed to be “hawking” for flying insects from the taller trees, a female Siskin seen sharing a tree with the Waxwings at one point. Some of the HGV drivers passing the A38 site have started giving long blasts on their HGV's horns which scare the birds off and give the twitch to some birders to say the least.


Yarner Wood (Pond hide) Marsh Tit, Nuthatch, Siskin and the usual expected species.

Teigngrace gave a flock of twelve Egrets flying over and landing at Blatchford farm, which when viewed properly gave two Cattle Egret and ten Little Egret.


Forty plus Pied Wagtails on a fodder field strip and a very pale Buzzard.

Stover Country Park, on the lake, five Goosander, eight Pochard, ten plus Tufted Duck, from the feed station walk way four plus Marsh Tit, Nuthatch, three Bullfinch, Green and Greater Spotted Woodpecker, Jay and a male Greenfinch. On leaving a mixed Tit flock containing four Long Tailed Tits.


Back home at South Brent the resident pair of Buzzards soaring and displaying despite the weather.

Posted February 1st, 2017 at 4:24 pm by Steve Hopper in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts


5 Velvet Scoter and 80+ Great Crested Grebes over toward Goodrington Beach today, and 2 Black-necked Grebes off Elberry Headland in toward Elberry Cove.

Posted February 1st, 2017 at 10:37 am by Mike Langman in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

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