Devon Bird Sightings: Other Wildlife from 22nd–28th February 2017

Lockdown relaxations

Devon Birds would like to thank the many members and other birdwatchers who complied with the restrictions during the recent Lockdown and stayed in their local area (village, town or part of city) to birdwatch while exercising (and later) taking recreation. We hope that, despite the obvious frustrations, you found some respite in watching wildlife in your local area and perhaps discovered some birds close to home, that you might otherwise not have seen! As always, please submit sightings to the County recorder and / or BirdTrack. 
 
Please continue to follow the Covid related requirements (currently "rule of six outside, social distancing etc) while enjoying the new freedoms to extend your birdwatching. Some hides will remain closed for the time being and where you find one open, please follow Government guidelines on keeping yourself & others safe: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/social-distancing/what-you-need-to-do/
 
Thank you from
Devon Birds News site editors & members of the Records Committee

Posted April 2nd at 4:28 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Think before you post...!

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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

DEVON BIRDS RECORD COMMITTEE

As noted in the minutes of the Oct 2020 DBRC meeting, Tim Jones is standing down after serving as a member of the Committee for an extended sixth year. Tim has been an active member of the Committee, and his consistently pragmatic approach to assessing records has proved invaluable. The Society would like to thank him for his contribution over the past six years and wish him well in the future.

In the hope of maintaining a geographic spread across the Committee, DBRC approached Dean Jones to fill the vacancy. Dean grew up birding and ringing in Antrim and Lothian, before a tour of various European islands, including Lundy where he has been the Warden now for the past four years.

His experience and knowledge from ringing and birdwatching around Europe will be especially useful to Devon Birds and the Records Committee.

Unless the County Recorder receives any other applications before 15th April 2021, Dean will be formally elected to fill the vacancy for a five year period.

For more information and/or an application form please contact:

Kevin Rylands, County Recorder.   Email: recorder@devonbirds.org 

Posted March 4th at 10:45 am by Mike Daniels in Bird News

Membership

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

Tuesday 28th February 2017

Slapton Sands Humpback, Saturday 25 Feb

Images taken at Slapton on Saturday 25 Feb by Carole Leigh

Humpback being followed by porpoise Humpback blowing Humpback close in to the beach
Humpback being followed by porpoise                  Humpback blowing                    Humpback close in to the beach

Posted February 28th, 2017 at 2:44 pm by Carole Leigh in Other Wildlife

Sunday 26th February 2017

Start Bay Whale Watching

Humpback whale continuing to show late afternoon today.  Seen about 150m offshore below Strete Gate to Strete coast path at 4:15pm.  Surfaced 4 times moving east, followed by deep dive showing tail flukes.  Sadly too distant to photograph but easy to follow with binoculars.

Posted February 26th, 2017 at 6:33 pm by Chris Tickle in Other Wildlife

Humpback at Slapton

Humpback quite close to shore at Torcross from 15:00 - 15:30 (didn't need binoculars to see the blows and it surfacing) and it then travelled up towards Strete Gate close to shore. 

Posted February 26th, 2017 at 6:03 pm by George and Lesley Carr in Other Wildlife

HUMPBACK WHALE

Humpback whale sightings on friday lunch time by memorial carpark

Humpback Whale
Humpback Whale

Posted February 26th, 2017 at 8:07 am by Roger Backway in Other Wildlife

Saturday 25th February 2017

Humpback in Start Bay facts

You may have read in the press or heard on the news there is concern over the welfare of this animal. There is no cause for alarm, it's quite healthy and feeding. It is now searching a larger area (from Start Point to Blackpool Sands) for food than previous days, which may indicate the food source is dispersing in the southwesterly winds, so enjoy while its still here. An American expert has commented that the fact it is raising its flukes is the sign of a healthy animal and the British Divers Marine Life Rescue have written this factual statement (better than certain media coverage):   BDMLR statement

Humpback WhaleHumpback Whale blow hole

Photo from yesterday showing the front of the Humpback and its double blow hole - why they have a 'bushy' or 'mushroom' shaped blow.

Posted February 25th, 2017 at 4:37 pm by Mark Darlaston in Other Wildlife

Friday 24th February 2017

Slapton Sands

The Humpback Whale still showing very well to late afternoon, extremely close at times to the delight of gathering crowds including many children after school. A fantastic beast!

Earlier the Black-necked Grebe - almost in full summer plumage - very close in shore and 2 or 3 Harbour Porpoises further out. 

Humpback Whale Humpback Whale
Humpback Whale

Posted February 24th, 2017 at 8:47 pm by Pete Aley in Other Wildlife

Whale Watching at Slapton Sands

Humpback showing well close-in off Slapton Beach this pm - attracting hundreds of watchers!! Also several Harbour Porpoises & 2 Grey Seals. Other attractions were Black-throated Diver & Razorbill on sea!! 

Also both White-fronted Geese back on South Huish Marsh & 4 Cattle Egrets by Horwell House - a good twitch day!!

Posted February 24th, 2017 at 5:21 pm by Rob Macklin in Other Wildlife

Humpback Whale - Start Bay 23/02/17

On 23rd February a Humpback Whale was feeding close offshore in Start Bay with a large feeding frenzy of seabirds, mainly gulls and Gannets. Other cetaceans attracted to the fish included several Harbour Porpoise and Common Dolphins; and a Grey Seal. The food source appeared to be a large shoal of Herring and Mackerel - an angler fishing off the beach was catching many every cast.

(photos are all zoomable showing both unique marking on both sides and tail flukes).

Humpback Whale blowHumpback Whale - leftside markingsHumpback Whale - rightside markingsHumpback Whale - dive and flukes

Thanks to Perry and Mike for alerting me to a whale sp. presence. Is this the same animal that was reported as a Minke on 22nd and the same day? Any pictures of the Minke please?

If the food source remains hopefully it will stay to give others a rare opportunity to see this magnificent animal off Devon.  A nice present after the storm I'll call 'Doris day'!

Posted February 24th, 2017 at 8:34 am by Mark Darlaston in Other Wildlife

Thursday 23rd February 2017

Humpbacked Whale

Start Bay

Humpback Whale

 

Humpback Whale

Posted February 23rd, 2017 at 10:43 pm by Alan Doidge in Other Wildlife

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