Devon Bird Sightings: Other Wildlife from 8th–14th March 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

Monday 13th March 2017

Humpback Whale, Slapton

The whale was seen numerous times between 1545 and 1830 going up and down along the shore of Slapton, Torcross and Strete Corner beach, sadly not seen to breach like off Berry Head this morning. Many harbour porpoises and gannets present as well.

Posted March 13th, 2017 at 7:34 pm by Kevin Johns in Other Wildlife

Humpback Whale, Berry Head, 13 March

An excellent morning watching the Humpback whale off Berry Head between about 10:45 and 12:45. The whale was first sighted in the middle of the bay rolling and showing his flippers. He then started breaching at regular intervals but still at a distance. At 11:22 a cabin cruiser appeared from the Dartmouth side of the head and cruised directly up to the whale, making several course adjustments as the whale surfaced in different locations. The boat reached the whale and powered off over the last location of the whale which then disappeared much to the consternation and annoyance of a crowd of at least 50 people on the head. The boat left the area at approx 1135. At approx 12:10 the whale returned and to the delight of the crowd headed directly towards the head and fished for some while under the head at 1240 the whale then headed off to open sea breaching constantly to the delight of the crowd. Tail markings confirm this is the same whale that has been at Slapton Beach over the last couple of weeks.

Humpback Whale under Berry Head Humpback Whale breaching Humpback Whale breaching

Eds Bob: could you contact the Berry Head Ranger 01803 882619 about possible use of your photos?

Posted March 13th, 2017 at 5:54 pm by Bob Telford in Other Wildlife

Sunday 12th March 2017

Water spray off Torquay

At Roundham Head this afternoon (~1600) and saw water spray just above the sea off Torquay.  Repeated several times, moving about and by eye could occasionally see "black shapes". Had no binoculars with us or camera.  Obviously I hadnt read about the whale at Berry Head at the time but I thought it might be useful to post this, especially as jet skis were in use in a separate  part of the bay.

Posted March 12th, 2017 at 5:28 pm by Philip Strange in Other Wildlife

Humpback Whale at Berry Head

Whilst out looking for wheatear early today at Berry Head, I noticed a rather large black object in the sea. On closer inspection I realised it was  a whale, spouting and diving. After sending OH running back to the car to fetch my camera I photographed it for about an hour. It turned out to be the humpback from Slapton. The news spread quickly but by around 9.30am it had vanished. Is this a first for Berry Head?

Same markings at Slapton whale  
Same markings at Slapton whale

 

 

Posted March 12th, 2017 at 1:48 pm by Stephanie Murphy in Other Wildlife

Saturday 11th March 2017

Slapton

Humpback still between Slapton Monument Car Pk & Blackpool Sands, c.17:15 - 17:45, apparently feeding around high tide.

Posted March 11th, 2017 at 7:45 pm by David Holloway in Other Wildlife

Thursday 9th March 2017

Start Bay

In calm conditions the Humpback Whale showed well in Start Bay for most of day, covering most of the area. Breaching twice (completely leaving the water), showing the long white pectoral flippers and body earlier on; and a Bonxie hovered over the whale at one point! Also 10+ Harbour Porpoise, Red-throated and Great Northern Divers.

Humpback close in off memorial car park 18:10

Posted March 9th, 2017 at 10:58 pm by Mark Darlaston in Other Wildlife

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