Devon Bird Sightings: Bird News from 22nd–31st March 2017

2020 Records request

If you saw any of the records below please submit a description to the County Recorder to ensure they make the official record. Many thanks.

·         Bee-eater 03-Aug Wistlandpound Res

·         Caspian Gull 15-Apr Fremington Pill

·         Caspian Gull 14- Sep Powderham

·         Crane [3] 22-Mar Milton Abbot

·         Crane [2] 24-Jun nr Ottery

·         Glossy Ibis 20-Jun South Efford Marsh

·         Glossy Ibis  02-Nov Seaton Marshes

·         Golden Oriole 07-Apr Fremington Pill

·         Golden Oriole 28-May Weston Mill

·         Golden Oriole [2] 23-Jun Bolt Head

·         Greenland WF Goose 20-Dec Roadford




·         Green-winged Teal Nov/Dec Exe Estuary

·         Grey Partridge 13-May Bishops Tawton

·         Grey Partridge 12-Nov Exminster Marshes

·         Leach's Petrel 30- Sep Labrador Bay

·          Leach's Petrel 31-Oct Sidmouth

·        Long-tailed Skua 04-Jul Dawlish Warren

·         Montagu's Harrier 17-May West Dart River

·         Ring-necked Duck Jan/Feb Meeth

·         Spotted Crake 09-Apr East Down

·        Stone-curlew [2] 22-Sep South Huish



Posted June 18th at 11:40 pm by Kevin Rylands in Bird News


In the light of the continuing Covid19 restrictions on the number of people gathering together, and the need for social distancing, it has been agreed that there will be no Devon Birds meetings or events organised until 19th July 2021, when Government restrictions are planned to be lifted. If there is any Government announcement that necessitates a change to this date an update will be posted.

Posted April 16th at 11:17 am by Mike Daniels in Bird News

Think before you post...!


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


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

Friday 31st March 2017

Berry Head

A brief couple of hours at Berry Head today produced a lovely Wheatear down in the quarry, 3 Swallows passing over, 8 calling Chiffchaffs, 1 Blackcap, around 12 Linnets.  26 species recorded in total.

Wheatear Chiffchaff
Wheatear                                                                      Chiffchaff

Posted March 31st, 2017 at 10:03 pm by Steph Murphy in Bird News

Berry Head 31 March.

My first Wheatear of the year on the seaward side of the road down to the quarry. 1 Rock Pipit.  Large numbers of Gannet, Guillemot and Shag fishing around the headland. Fulmar nesting.  3 Harbour Porpoises. 1 singing Wren nest building. 1 Song Thrush by the car park.

Wheatear Wren nestbuilding 
Wheatear                      Wren nestbuilding                                                                       

Posted March 31st, 2017 at 10:03 pm by Bob Telford in Bird News

Staverton WTW

One Yellow Browed Warbler still remains along with at least 8 Chiffchaffs including the tristis.

Posted March 31st, 2017 at 8:23 pm in Bird News

Egret mix

From 6pm this evening until roughly 7.40pm 26 egrets gathered on the eastern mudflats opposite my house. There were 19 Little Egret and 7 Cattle Egret by the time they all flew to roost in trees on the west side of the Torridge. The Cattle Egret were far more active in the reeds at the back of the mudflat whereas the Little Egrets were content to sit around and preen. I would think that these Cattle Egret were the 'Magnificent Seven' from Fremington but if anyone saw Cattle Egret at Fremington during this time then we have to rethink our Taw/Torridge totals. Meanwhile my bedroom window list seems to grow and grow!

Posted March 31st, 2017 at 7:52 pm by Martin Unwin in Bird News

Swallow - Crediton and Spreyton

My first Swallow sighting today - Crediton

Swallow over Crediton
Swallow over Crediton

Posted March 31st, 2017 at 7:46 pm by Jo King in Bird News

Chivlestone / Beesands / Slapton

19 Cattle Egrets this morning between Cousins Cross and Chivlestone Cross on the East Prawle road nr. Chivlestone,  Grid Ref SX 785394. They were in the field below the turbine. There were 6 or 7 Fresian Cattle here but the egrets were feeding in the grass away from them. The field has probably been spared the dreaded pesticides ( for now at least ) and must have plenty of food for them.            

Nearby at Beesands an early Sedge Warbler singing from the left of the hide, also a couple Willow Warblers and a male Shoveler. At Slapton Ley still a male Wigeon in Ireland Bay. Swallow and 4 Sand Martins at Torcross. Seen a few Small Tortoishells and Peacocks today, also a Brimstone at Slapton in Ireland Bay Quarry.



Posted March 31st, 2017 at 3:45 pm by Perry Sanders in Bird News

Torbay Coastal

A birding trip around the Torbay coast this morning was almost devoid of bird life other than Gulls and Cormorants. 

A very distant drake Eider in full breeding plumage seen from Broadsands and the only other bird of note was a Willow Warbler in the white thorn/willow stand by the path leading up to the gate towards Elberry.

Posted March 31st, 2017 at 3:35 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Swallow near Tavistock

Saw my first Swallow of the year near Tavistock golf course. Lots of Wheatears surrounding Cox Tor.

Posted March 31st, 2017 at 3:29 pm by Robin Stanbridge in Bird News

Blatchford Farm - Teigngrace

Now 8 Cattle Egrets ( and 13 Little Egrets) in entrance field to Blatchford Farm, Teigngrace mid morning.

Posted March 31st, 2017 at 1:42 pm by Mark Bailey in Bird News

Brixham Breakwater, 30 March 2017

A walk along the breakwater at low tide this afternoon gave 1 Purple Sandpiper, 2 Turnstone, 1 Rock Pipit and 4 Shag

Purple Sandpiper clinging on Purple Sandpiper feeding Turnstone
Purple Sandpiper clinging on                 Purple Sandpiper feeding                                           Turnstone

Posted March 31st, 2017 at 12:02 am by Bob Telford in Bird News

Thursday 30th March 2017


Firecrest in trees between Start car park and Hallsands 11.30 this morning. Lots of chiffchaffs singing. 

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 10:23 pm by Andy Rook in Bird News

South Huish Marsh 30th March

A few more photos of the Iceland gull at South Huish Marsh this afternoon. Nothing else to report that has not already been reported.


Posted March 30th, 2017 at 9:41 pm by Mark Witherall in Bird News


Four Cattle Egret in cow field above A386 at grid reference SS461238, 18:00. Pulled over and ran back with binoculars to confirm ID.

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 8:46 pm by Lowell Mills in Bird News


The Glossy Ibis, seven Cattle Egrets and 15 Little Egrets were foraging in fields south of Tarka trail opposite Isley Marsh at 09:00. The Cattle Egrets later appeared in the saltmarsh and three Spoonbills dropped in briefly during the afternoon. On the Taw Estuary a female Eider.

Best of the summer migrants was an Osprey that flew west towards Appledore at 13:15 before turning back and drifting high northeast 25 minutes later. Also noted were two Wheatears, three Willow Warblers, 10+ Swallows and 50+ Sand Martins.

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 8:24 pm by Will Salmon in Bird News

Coypool, Saltram & Plym Estuary

Coypool: Yellow-browed Warbler, Willow Warbler, Common Sandpiper, Rabbit
Saltram: Grey Squirrel, Small Tortoiseshell.
Plym Estuary: Greenshank, Cormorant, Little Egret, Rbin, Blackbird, Corvids

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 7:45 pm by Michael Spencer in Bird News


Maybe 150 - 200 Sand Martins over the pond this evening, and at about 7.10p.m. the three subadult Spoonbills flew in, circled and landed out of sight in a dip in the field about 400m south of the scrape.

In the reserve this morning the first singing Willow Warbler, and a few Chiffs,

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 7:45 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

South Huish Marsh

A good mix of Gulls with 8 plus Lesser Black Backs, 9 plus Greater Black Backs and 3 Mediterranean Gulls, two in adult plumage and one 2nd winter bird. EDS: Photo shows two 2nd summer (black tips to primaries) and one 1st summer Med Gull (almost completely dark primaries).

Two White Wagtails and several Pied's, Skylark, Stonechat, numerous displaying Rock Pipit, Raven, two Buzzards having a territorial set to.

Moorhen, Coot, Teal, Mallard, Shellduck and Shoveller on the marsh.

Several Little Egrets and Oyster Catchers flying in from the sea.

Aveton Gifford tidal road, Common Sandpiper, Redshank and two Greenshank.

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 7:03 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Soar and South Huish

At South Huish marsh this afternoon, the juv Iceland Gull flew in off the sea at 2.20pm and flew off at 3.30pm. Also Water Pipit, 3 White Wagtails, Sand Martin, Swallow, 5 Common Scoters, 2nd-s Mediterranean Gull and Grey Seal. 

Earlier at Soar, Wheatear, White Wagtail, Redwing and 18 Chiffchaffs. 

Iceland Gull, juv.
Iceland Gull, juv.

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 6:53 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Berrynarbor Hirundines

12 Hirundines over the garden at 18:15.  Mainly Swallows but at least one House Martin.  First for us this year.

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 6:49 pm by Kim Beaver in Bird News

Beesands Ley

From the hide, 1Male Scaup. 1Cettis Warbler seen and singing. On the beach 1 Wheatear.


Posted March 30th, 2017 at 6:10 pm by Terry Goddard in Bird News

Shiphay, Torquay


A Willow Warbler in full song in one of the small oaks at the top of the hill at Cadewell Park.  

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 2:19 pm by Paul Darlington in Bird News


Sedge Warbler was singing in the Southdown side of the reeds this morning, also the Cetti's Warbler was singing and quite mobil and a Willow Warbler was singing half way down the track leading to the hide.  There were 4 Blackcaps singing around the marsh and plenty of Chiffchaffs around also.  On the marsh were 2 pairs of Tufted Duck and a single male, 5 pairs of Gadwalls, 6 Canada Geese and a juvenile Mute Swan. A Sandwich Tern flew along the coast and around the bay.

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 1:23 pm by Paul Albrechtsen in Bird News

Berry Head Quarry

Suberb male Black Redstart by granite boulders. No Wheatears

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 1:09 pm by David Leigh in Bird News

Sherpa scrape

3 Spoonbills until 08.30 + 76 Black tailed Godwits & 7 Wigeon on the scrape. 1 male + 1 female Blackcap at the sides of the Tarka trail by Wrafton Pond + 2 Willow Warblers.


Posted March 30th, 2017 at 9:45 am by Rob Jutsum in Bird News

South Brent ~ Swallow

A single Swallow over the house at 08.22am this morning, my first one of the year.

Siskin and Song Thrush around the feed station area.

Posted March 30th, 2017 at 8:28 am by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Wednesday 29th March 2017

South Huish Marsh

Late afternoon: 2CY Iceland Gull still present, first offshore, then foraging with other gulls in sheep field by marsh until 5.15pm at least. Also 1 m White Wagtail and a Swallow.

Posted March 29th, 2017 at 8:13 pm by Andy Smith in Bird News


northam burrows near 8th tee, 27th march, sunny, slight east wind

Posted March 29th, 2017 at 7:57 pm by jenny shaw in Bird News

Glossy Ibis & Cattle Egrets at Fremington Pil

Short visit to Fremington Quay & ajoining pil this afternoon - single Glossy Ibis feeding with 50+ Black-tailed Godwits at low tide in the pil. Group of 7 Cattle Egrets roosting in the trees where the Little Egrets usually roost at the top of the pil

Glossy IbisCattle EgretCattle Egret

Posted March 29th, 2017 at 7:43 pm by Chris & Sally Bollen in Bird News


A few Sand Martins over and around the pond this morning along with singing Chiffchaffs and a Willow Warbler. Not much in the reserve, a few singing Chiffs.

This evening at Wrafton Pond (around 7p.m.) Hundreds of Sand Martins, a couple of Swallows and still a couple of Chiffs singing. Out on the scrape were 7 Black-tailed Godwits, and in the field about 100 yards south of the scrape were 3 subadult Spoonbills. Also, and unusual here, were 2 Lesser Black-backed Gulls.

Posted March 29th, 2017 at 7:35 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

South Huish Marsh - Iceland Gull

No sign of Terry Goddard's Garganey during my visit to South Huish Marsh 11.30 - 1315 today. However at 11.30 am, what I believe to be an Iceland Gull, from the attached cropped photo, flew in and was there until I left for lunch. No sign of it when I returned about 1500hrs. 

Iceland Gull - South Huish Marsh - 29/3/2017
Iceland Gull - South Huish Marsh - 29/3/2017

Posted March 29th, 2017 at 6:18 pm by David Pakes in Bird News

Yesterday at Godborough

Singing Blackcaps the highlight of a good mornings work on the reserve.

Posted March 29th, 2017 at 3:06 pm by John & Karen Towers & Sims in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh & Goosemoor

Quieter at BGM this lunchtime. No sign of the rarer gulls today. The Green Sandpiper still at the back of the marsh.

Goosemoor was more productive with a Willow Warbler of the year singing by the railway line and another singing the other side, out of sight. Then a brief view of a Swallow with a few Sand Martins.

Posted March 29th, 2017 at 2:10 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Berry Head

Seawatching 07:15-11:00. Despite ideal conditions SSW4 and murky - passage poor. Puffin, 206 Auks (1:1 Guillemot Razorbill), 6 Sandwich Terns, 6 Common Gulls, 2 Red-throated Divers, 1 distant poss Great Northern Diver, 12 Common Scoter.

Common Dolphins (c40) feeding under c100 Gannets, perhaps some lingering from yesterday and 10+ Harbour Porpoise.

Common Dolphin

Posted March 29th, 2017 at 1:48 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

Plym Estuary

Highlights today were a Yellow-browed Warbler and my first Willow Warbler of the year, both at Coypool near Weigbridge Cottage. Also - Dipper, 5 Greenshanks, 15 Turnstones, 4 Chiffchaffs, a pair of Mandarin Ducks and Green Woodpecker.

Posted March 29th, 2017 at 1:16 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Tuesday 28th March 2017

Winter Thrushes

Still at least 20 redwings around the Woodland area, just south of Ashburton. Last year they stayed until April1st. Two fieldfares last seen on Sunday, 26 March. Hopefully not the last sighting for this year.

Posted March 28th, 2017 at 10:19 pm by Stuart Logan in Bird News

Woodbury Common/Dawlish Warren

The Great Grey Shrike on the ridge to the north east of Woodbury Castle - very active including hovering Kestrel style whilst hunting. A Red Kite drifted east at 11.20.

At Dawlish Warren, the Jack Snipe was showing well 4.15 to 4.35 - note it could not be seen from the usual place (opposite the boats) as it had moved to the nearside of the pond but could be seen very clearly from the next vantage point looking back along the left side of the main pond.


Posted March 28th, 2017 at 9:11 pm in Bird News

nr winkleigh

Red Kite spotted between Chulmleigh&Winkleigh late morning today, drifting north east

Posted March 28th, 2017 at 9:08 pm by Mike Luckson in Bird News


Sorry, not a sighting but a request re photos. Obviously I always know what they are (!), but I think it would be a good idea to request that posters always name the subject of their pics.

Posted March 28th, 2017 at 8:12 pm by Alan Ford in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

Pictures from today


Eds: please label photos - not everyone knows what birds these are.. 

Bonaparte's Gull, (should also come under scarce/ rare - subject) Little Gull and Snipe 

Posted March 28th, 2017 at 7:44 pm by Duncan Leitch in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

Today was my first ever visit to Bowling green marsh. I will definitely be going back. I had a number of first sightings for my records which included..Little Gull, Bonaparte's Gull and Green Sandpiper. Also good views from the hide of...Wigeon, Teal, Pintail, Tuffed Duck, Shoveler, Black Tailed Godwit, Snipe, Grey Heron, Shelduck, Oystercatcher, Mallard and Curlew.

Posted March 28th, 2017 at 7:34 pm by Duncan Leitch in Bird News

South Huish marsh

2 Garganey and 1 Water pipit

Posted March 28th, 2017 at 2:48 pm by Terry Goddard in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

Same as yesterday this lunchtime. Bonaparte's Gull & Little Gull showing well from the hide and 1 Green Sandpiper.

Posted March 28th, 2017 at 2:03 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Exminster Marshes

A pleasant stroll around the southern part of the marshes this morning coincided with high water in the estuary so quite a few waders on the fields including 100+ black-tailed godwit, c60 dunlin and c100 curlew. A imm. marsh harrier had a similar plumage to the bird that was present in mid winter and it was using exactly the same perches so probably the same bird. Some shelduck had moved back onto the estuary before I started to count the flock, however there were over 70 still roosting. A scattering of chiffchaffs (5 singing) and sand martins (c20). Duck numbers continue to fall with small numbers of wigeon, shoveller, teal and pintail (only 6) remaining. And a greenshank flew over.

Posted March 28th, 2017 at 12:13 pm by John Waldon in Bird News

Tarka Trail - Braunton > Barnstaple

19 Chiffchaffs + 2 Willow Warblers (Wrafton Pond) singing between Braunton & Barnstaple. Also some Wigeon still on the Taw Estuary & a flock of BH Gulls + 2 Med Gulls in amongst them (one adult in smart summer plumage).

Posted March 28th, 2017 at 11:59 am by Rob Jutsum in Bird News


Five Redwings over at 8am

Posted March 28th, 2017 at 11:40 am by Rupert Kirkwood in Bird News

Monday 27th March 2017

Exminster Marshes

Marsh Harrier, lots of Lapwing displaying, a drake Red Breasted Merganser in the channel to the lock gates at the Turf, c 30 hirundines over the reserve - I believe mostly House Martin, but I couldn't be 100%.

Red Breasted Merganser

Wigeon put up by the harrier

Marsh Harrier being mobbed




Posted March 27th, 2017 at 11:45 pm by Bob Telford in Bird News

Dawlish Warren and Powderham Marshes Exminster

A Red Kite drifted northwards over Powderham Marshes at 3pm. At 4pm I saw a 'yellow-headed' Marsh Harrier disturb waders and ducks on Exminster Marshes. Several singing Chiffchaffs. Earlier, at Dawlish Warreen I saw the Jack Snipe 'bobbing' , together with a Common Snipe, and saw Sand Crocuses and Sand Lizards (being monitored by someone working for the sea defence building company) 6 plus Peacock and 1 Speckled Wood butterflies.

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 9:46 pm in Bird News

Woodbury Common

Grey Shrike showing well if a little distant as yesterdays post, rather mobile feeding within the area it was frequenting.

Other birds included Skylarks, Linnet, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Yellow Hammer, Stonechat, Green and Greater Spotted Woodpecker, two Willow Warbler both in full song and Wren.


At home female Reed Bunting still coming to garden feeders along with Siskin and a Song Thrush around the garden and a late fly past from two Canadian Geese.

Early evening a Kestrel seen over Wrangaton.

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 8:14 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Roborough Down 27/03/2017

1 x Redpoll (m), 2 x Yellowhammer (m), Stonechat (f), Meadow Pipits, Chaffinches, Robins, Corvids.

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 7:49 pm by Michael Spencer in Bird News

Plym Estuary & Saltram

A post-Portugal Plym excursion revealed a few waders still around - Curlew 13, Greenshank 4, Dunlin 4, Oystercatcher 2, Snipe 2, and Redshank 62. Also 4 Chiffchaffs, 10 Little Egrets, and a pair of Mandarin Ducks.

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 7:40 pm by Pete Aley in Bird News

Imagesof the Crossbills

As Promised here are a couple of images of the Crossbills at Soussons plantation yesterday. Please accept my poor spelling in the last post its the spell predictor on the iPad!

Crossbill At Soussons 2Common Crossbill

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 6:41 pm by John Wilkes in Bird News

Purple Sandpipers - Torquay

A total of 10 Purple Sandpipers  on the rocks beneath Torquay Breakwater at high tide this afternoon ( 1700 )

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 6:36 pm by Cliff Parrott in Bird News


At 1pm 2 Red Kite over the Copythorne road area of Brixham and then at 2pm another 1. Reported by Chris Smallbones. The 1pm ones sighted over Paignton Zoo a bit later.

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 6:28 pm by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News


More signs of Spring in the reserve this morning: about a dozen Chiffchaffs, including one with pale legs and longer wings, but it just wouldn't sing to confirm Willow Warbler :(

Also at least 2 male Blackcaps - one of which let out a couple of bursts of song. Plenty of Peacocks and Small Tortoiseshells on the wing.

No sign of Little Ringed Plovers.

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 5:48 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Berry Head

3pm. Red Kite flew low and slow along the length of the N. fort  going west to east. It then took a left at the light house and was lost in the haze in Torbay.

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 4:34 pm by John Lusher in Bird News


Red Kite drifting north 4o'clock 

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 4:30 pm by Gerry Hooper in Bird News

Red kite over Teignmouth

1 Red kite leisurely drifted over Teignmouth along seafront and up over Mules Parp at 4pm

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 4:17 pm by Adam Davison in Bird News

Dawlish Warren

30 members of DB attended this morning's walk and I listed 35 species in total.  The main interest came from trying to sight the Jack Snipe which was well hidden.  A pair of Cirl Bunting were more obliging and an unexpected find near the visitor centre.  A number of singing Chiffchaff and Greenfinch were present plus a fine Song Thrush.  Due to the low tide we decided not to proceed beyond the end of the golf links where a passing Sparrow Hawk flew along the (Bight) beach. At a distance the pair of Slavonian Grebes was seen close to Cockwood (better seen from the railway crossing point).  Two Skylarks were seen and several Stonechat and Linnets present. Someone reported seeing an Eider offshore and 6 Brent Geese were on the sea, otherwise there were few sea birds and a number of expected species (Wheatear and Swallow) were missing from the land side. On the return walk the Jack Snipe was seen again, this time in company with a Common Snipe.

Later, on driving through the road works at Bridge Road, Countess Wear a Red-legged Partridge flew over the road towards King George playing fields but having got to the other side it decided not to stay and flew back into the housing estate.

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 3:56 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in Bird News

Braunton Marshes

Heron about to land....

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 3:00 pm by Alan Denzey in Bird News

East to West Soar

Highlights were 22 singing Chiffchaffs, 3 singing Blackcaps,White Wagtail, Nuthatch, Treecreeper and 2 Siskins north over West Soar. Also: Speckled Wood on the wing.

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 2:17 pm by Rob Macklin in Bird News

Bowling Green Marsh

This lunchtime, the Bonaparte's Gull and Little Gull were on the marsh with a small group of Black-headed Gulls. Also 1 Green Sandpiper

Posted March 27th, 2017 at 2:04 pm by Nick Potter in Bird News

Sunday 26th March 2017


Late afternoon at Bowling Green Marsh, 2yc Bonaparte's gull, Little gull, Ruff and Green sandpiper.

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 10:57 pm by Martin Elcoate in Bird News

Mandarins at Yarner

Hadn't seen the Mandarins for a while at Yarner, but this stunning Drake with two females were there today

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 8:14 pm by Simon Thurgood in Bird News

First swallow?

A walk on Dartmoor to soussons plantation netted meadow pippet, buzzard, swallow yes swallow single bird making fast passages over the open moorland. Probable Marlin. Carrion crow, great tits. Common crossbills. Cmmn gull not much else due to the blustery conditions. The male crossbill showed well allowing me to get within 30 feet or so before being disturbed by a dog walker not on a lead! Image to follow

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 7:50 pm by John Wilkes in Bird News


First of the long evenings allowing later viewing: On the scrape by the Tarka Trail were 3 Little Ringed Plovers. In the reserve a couple of Chiffs singing. Sherpa Marsh was alive with 37 Mute Swans, mostly last year's young. Back to Wrafton Pond where about 200 Sand Martins were feeding quite high, and in amongst was at least 1 Swallow. No further sign of the Plovers.

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 7:27 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Clearbrook today

Three Swallows over good numbers of Meadow Pipits,the odd Skylark and Stonechats three Greenfinches on golf course and a male Kestrel.



Posted March 26th, 2017 at 6:22 pm by Chris Buckland in Bird News


A single Willow Warbler in song on Orcombe Point early this morning and a Yellow-browed Warbler in gardens on Belle Vue Road @ 950 this morning. Photos on

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 6:19 pm by Matt Knott in Bird News

Red Kite

Seen over fields between Poltimore Arms near Yarde and Cart Gate Cross about 4 miles north of North Molton just before 17:00.

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 5:50 pm by John & Karen Towers & Sims in Bird News

Northam burrows

Little ringed plover on tip pool at 17:00.On skern 250 golden plover,4 barwits.At southcott marsh east the water bideford 2 med gulls,ad,fs,120 bhg,9 common gull,17:30

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 5:45 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Labrador Bay

Today at Labrador Bay...

- 1 Cirl Bunting, Male                             - Crows/Rooks

- 1 Kestrel                                                - Skylark(s), Singing

- Chiffchaffs, Singing and Showing    - 2 Blue Tit

- Herring Gulls                                        - 1 or more Dunnock

- Wood Pigeons                                      - 1 Wren

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 5:40 pm by Samuel Gray in Bird News

Great Grey Shrike at Soussons Valley

The Great Grey Shrike was ranging from the gate at Soussons Plantation to the Vitifer  Mine area. Both sides of the valley path.

Sun 26th March

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 5:36 pm by Barry Rankine in Bird News

Dawlish Warren

After about an hours looking the Jack Snipe put in an appearance at around 9.45 next to the boats on the main pond. 5 minutes later it was gone again. Common Snipe and Little Grebe present. 

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 5:36 pm by Paul treen in Bird News

In the garden

Filling up the feeders in the garden the song of sparrows, Robins, goldfinches suddenly fell silent..... And then a sparrow hawk flew over.

Female sparrowhawk
Female sparrow hawk

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 5:19 pm by Philip Worth in Bird News

Wrafton Pond

One of many Sand Martins over the pond, in lovely bright but very windy conditions

Sand Martin
Sand Martin

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 4:45 pm by Alan Denzey in Bird News

Brixham Breakwater.

Rough sea no boat trip so walked Brixham Breakwater. 6 Purple Sandpiper and 1 Turnstone on the old fuel bunkering jetty. Lyme Bay boat trips start Sunday 2nd July and then every Sunday till 3rd September if interested call 07866202576.

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 11:20 am by Nigel Smallbones in Bird News


4 Spoonbills reported on the scrape this morning early. Flushed when joggers ran past along the Tarka Trail.

Posted March 26th, 2017 at 10:44 am by Jon Turner in Bird News

Saturday 25th March 2017

Tawny Owl - Fremington

Travelling back from Fremington to Barnstaple on the bus around 9:45 tonight the driver stopped the bus and asked me (he knows me) to come and have a look at a bird that had flown into the front of the bus and was caught in the wipers. It was a tawny owl looking very groggy but otherwise apparently unharmed. We left it on the grass verge by the bus stop near Taw Meadow Crescent. Lovely bird, hope it's OK. 

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 10:34 pm by alan craddock in Bird News

Jack Snipe at Dawlish Warren main pool 25th March

Jack Snipe just stood in sunshine this morning, lovely Little Grebe also on pool. Redshank at Cockwood

Jack SnipeLittle GrebeRedshank

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 10:25 pm by Barry Rankine in Bird News

Slavonian Grebe's

Two Slavonian Grebe's off Cockwood this morning 25th March 2017.

One a little more advanced in nearing Summer plumage.


Posted March 25th, 2017 at 10:20 pm by Barry Rankine in Bird News

Woodbury Common

Great Grey Shrike in birches and scrub in wet area below Woodbury Castle this afternoon. Found and photographed by Dave White and later seen by Doug Cullen.

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 8:54 pm by Chris Townend in Bird News

Stoke Rivers garden birds

After getting our first 2 wood pigeon in our rural garden since moving here in July 2015 we had a Stock Dove this morning. Pays to look at every bird carefully. Not that exciting for most people but great for the BTO GBW Survey.

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 7:56 pm by John & Karen Towers & Sims in Bird News

Staverton WTW

Still one Yellow browed warbler along with 6 Chiffchaffs including the tristis. 

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 7:01 pm in Bird News


Well it turns out that Osprey beat Swallow by 6 hours - finally saw one this afternoon over the reserve with a good number of Sand Martins in the lovely sunshine. Pity about the strong wind though! Also of note were Goldcrest and Long-tailed Tit nest-building. The three Canada Geese in the reserve yesterday ALL had rings on - Ma and Pa and one of the young from last year?

Not been home long when I got a call from a friend saying 'boys' were breaking into the reserve! I went back and called the police. They have found the perpetrators and spoken to them. I will keep you informed of developments.

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 6:32 pm by Jon Turner in Bird News

Labrador bay and Rv Teign

Labrador Bay first thing this morning Cirl Bunting and Skylarks singing well, Kestrel, Buzzard, white winged Carrion Crow, on the sea 24 plus Common Scoter and 6 Long Tailed Duck. 

Rv Teign from Shaldon to Coombe Cellars, 7 Red Breasted Merganser, Curlew, Oyster Catcher, Heron, Little Egret, Stock Dove, Linnet ad Goldfinch.

On the Kingkerswell by pass 11 Buzzards soaring.

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 6:19 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

Holdstone down

Bright but very breezy day today provided courting meadow pipits, skylarks, stonchats, kestral and a pair of wheatears m+f.

WheatearsCourting pipits

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 5:29 pm by Philip worth in Bird News

Morte Point

Morte Point 0800-01100. (My first) 1 Swallow made one pass over the Point flying E. 2 Wheatears, 2 Rock Pipits,  8 Linnets, 2  Stonechat on the Point with 1 Fulmar, 1 LBbG, 1 Shag and several GBbG enjoying the strong E wind off the Point. 50+ Meadow flying E  in small flocks between 0700-0800.17 other species present.

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 5:27 pm by Derek Stacey in Bird News

Bellever Tor - Cuckoo

Cuckoo south west of Bellever Tor at 10.30 am

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 3:14 pm by Audrey Wolstenholme in Bird News

Topsham - Cattle Egrets

Small party of Cattle Egrets in field (with several L Egrets) by R Clyst just N of Highfield Farm. Distance (200m) and failure to bring scope meant exact no. uncertain: min. 4 but possibly up to 6.

Cattle Egrets - Topsham - 25/3/2017
Cattle Egrets - Topsham - 25/3/2017

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 12:26 pm by Tim Worfolk in Bird News

Dawlish Warren

Good views of Jack Snipe on the pond, which is attracting quite a few birders. Also of note a male Wheatear, a single Egyptian Goose overhead towards Cockwood and a single Swallow overhead towards golf course. Many Linnets, Skylark, a few Chiffys and some Reed Buntings. Species total count was 36. Only had phone so digiscoped pictures.

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 12:18 pm by Steph Murphy in Bird News

Hopes Nose

A male Cirl Bunting singing late morning in middle of lower slope, then moving up the headland and seen again by top gate, is possibly just the second site record . Also a male Wheatear on Sandy Point. Chiffchaff and Blackcap both singing 

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 11:15 am by Mark Bailey in Bird News


Yellow-browed warbler still at the WTW, now alone as chiffchaffs have moved on

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 10:58 am by Henry Trollope in Bird News


Just heading out when all the Gulls started kicking off and there, much to my surprise, as an Osprey heading north. Sue Bruce has just phoned to say she saw it over her house too! Don't think I've ever seen Osprey before Swallow before....

Posted March 25th, 2017 at 9:07 am by Jon Turner in Bird News

Friday 24th March 2017

Around the Exe

Darts Farm - Curlew, Black-tailed Godwit, 2 Canada Geese, 1 or more Mallards, Moorhen, Martins, Great Tits, Chaffinches, Wrens.

Goosemoor - Not much to report except lots of singing chiffchaffs.

Bowling Green Marsh From the Hide - Sand Martins, Little Egret, Mute Swans, Wigeon, Shelduck, Grey Heron, Teal, Moorhen, Black-tailed Godwit, Magpie.

Bowling Green Marsh From the Viewing Platform - Again, nothing very interesting to be seen apart from 1 or more Cormorants, a Greenshank and lots of other birds too far out to identify. 

Exminster Marshes - Canada Geese, 1 or more Grey Herons, Teal, Mute Swans, Cormorants, Shoveler, Pintail, Black-tailed Godwits, a Kestrel, and 1 or more Starlings.

Powderham Deer Park - A quick scan from the side if the road gave Canada Geese, Shelduck, Herring Gulls and a Little Egret. 

Posted March 24th, 2017 at 8:04 pm by Samuel Gray in Bird News


So it took a whole month to find time to get to Slapton & I knew the conditions were very average and as I expected no sign of Humpback. However 3 Porpoises, 1 GN Diver, 1 Sandwich Tern, 30 Sand Martin & Russ had seen a Wheatear & an Otter. 

Posted March 24th, 2017 at 6:56 pm by Steve Cox in Bird News

Mountbatten, Plymouth.

This afternoon: 9 Turnstone in the rock pools, 1 Little egret catching blennys, 2 Wheatear, 1 Sandwich tern, 3 Shelduck overhead, 1 Gannet in the Sound and a male Greenfinch singing for Britain.

Posted March 24th, 2017 at 6:31 pm by Alan Livsey in Bird News

South Brent - Fieldfare

Winter not quite over! This afternoon a flock of c24 Fieldfare flying between trees near Dockwell, South Brent 

Posted March 24th, 2017 at 5:49 pm by David Pakes in Bird News

Gannets at Berry Head & a Reed Bunting at Slapton Ley

Around midday at Berry Head, at least 6 Gannet's feeding close to the second fort, a few Guillemots flying but not that many due to the high winds & rough seas - A Reed Bunting showed for a few seconds by the bridge at the far end of the ley - at least 4 Cetti's Warblers heard but only seen for a quick fly by


Posted March 24th, 2017 at 5:24 pm by Greg Bradbury in Bird News

Mansands & Waddeton

1 Cattle Egret still present with 7 Little Egrets in cattle field between Waddeton and Galmpton.

Mansands Marsh- 2 Sand Martins, 1 Cetti's Warbler (singing), 9 Chiffchaff and 4/5 pairs of Gadwall.

Posted March 24th, 2017 at 4:46 pm by Jacob Wood in Bird News

Slapton sands - Sandwich Terns

Photos of Sandwich Terns off Slapton taken by Henry Kirkwood (were missed off his original post).

Sandwich TernSandwich Tern with fish

Posted March 24th, 2017 at 3:05 pm by Mark Darlaston in Bird News

Osprey river teign

Osprey flying north from river teign over bishopsteignton at 9.55am

Posted March 24th, 2017 at 10:05 am by Rob mcginn in Bird News

Cattle Egret Fremington Pill

Yesterday Thursday there was 5 Cattle Egrets along with 7 Little Egret at the top end of the Pill. They all except one Little one flew up into the field with sheep.

Posted March 24th, 2017 at 8:26 am by Richard Burston in Bird News

Thursday 23rd March 2017

South Huish

Water Pipit present to right of car park in the corner of the marsh together with several Snipe and Rock Pipits.

Posted March 23rd, 2017 at 7:52 pm by Mike Langman in Bird News

South Milton Ley - green sandpiper

1 Green Sandpiper flushed from the side of a small area of open water at South Milton Ley this morning

Posted March 23rd, 2017 at 7:08 pm by David Pakes in Bird News


1 Whimbrel with 30 Curlews in field south of the River Kenn, Powderham late afternoon . Also in the park 2 Pintail, 2 Greylag Geese, 4 Stock Doves and c12 Sand Martins over the River Kenn.  No sign of the Cattle Egrets in a brief search. 

Posted March 23rd, 2017 at 6:36 pm by Mark Bailey in Bird News

Jack Snipe

A wet visit to the Warren gave, after an hour or so, great views of the Jack Snipe on the main pond, by the boats. Also on the pond Little Grebe, Mallard, Moorhen and Canada geese.

Video link below -:

Jack Snipe
Jack Snipe

Posted March 23rd, 2017 at 5:29 pm by Martin Rooney in Bird News

RSPB, Labrador Bay

c90 Common Scoter, 2 Velvet Scoter and 5 Long-tailed Ducks in the bay this morning.

Common Scoter & Long-tailed Ducks
Common Scoter & Long-tailed Ducks

Velvet Scoter & 1 Common Scoter
Velvet Scoter & 1 Common Scoter

Posted March 23rd, 2017 at 11:44 am by david cawthraw in Bird News

Wednesday 22nd March 2017

Exminster marshes

male garganey and around 100 sand martins. this afternoon around 4.00

Posted March 22nd, 2017 at 10:17 pm by Jeff Hacon in Bird News

Stover Park, 22 March 2017

Afternoon at Stover - 10 Goosander, 3 adult male, 1 first winter male and 6 female, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 7 Greenfinch, pair of Bullfinch, pair of Siskin , Marsh Tit, Great Spotted Woodpecker at the feeder station. Flock of 15 Martins over, mostly Sand but at leats 1 House Martin

House MartinSand Martin


Posted March 22nd, 2017 at 9:42 pm by Bob Telford in Bird News

Sandwich Tern

1 south over Atherington north devon at 07:20

Posted March 22nd, 2017 at 9:00 pm by Robert Marshall in Bird News

Morte Point.

9 very smart male wheatear, 2 pairs stonechat, little flock of meadow pipits pairing off and two male linnets.

Posted March 22nd, 2017 at 8:10 pm by John Elvin in Bird News

West Charleton Marsh/Kingsbridge Estuary

1 Cattle Egret on the marsh loosely associating with 4 Little Egrets, also 1 Black-tailed Godwit, both present all afternoon. On the estuary 1 Sandwich Tern hunting down stream of Saltstone at 16:10, then on buoy between Lincombe and Saltstone at 16:30.

Plenty of water in the marsh, several Moorhens, usual range of waterfowl and calling Water Rail, probably 2.

Posted March 22nd, 2017 at 6:29 pm by Barrie Whitehall in Bird News

Mt Batten, Plymouth

First sandwich tern of the year, fishing offshore.

Posted March 22nd, 2017 at 6:20 pm by Richard Archer in Bird News

Powderham Deer Park - Egyptian Geese

Two Egyptian Geese looking well comfy in Powderham Deer Park today

Egyptian Geese
Egyptian Geese

Posted March 22nd, 2017 at 4:50 pm by Jo King in Bird News

South Hams

At least six Cattle Egret opposite Bowden Pillars near Totnes this morning.

Slapton ~ Two Kestrel, three Buzzards, three Sandwich Tern, twenty plus Shag, one Great Crested Grebe on the sea, twenty plus Gannet, several Harbour Porpoise.

Two Wheatear two flocks of Sand Martin ten plus and forty plus birds.


Along the Ley in the scrub eleven Cetti's Warbler heard calling,one Wren and three Skylark.

Kingsbridge estuary Greenshank and Redshank and a few Little Egrets.

Blackdown Rings, Loddiswell, Buzzard and another Kestrel.

At home round the feeders female Reed Bunting, Siskin and a Long Tailed Tit.

Posted March 22nd, 2017 at 3:04 pm by Steve Hopper in Bird News

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