Devon Bird Sightings from 1st–7th April 2018

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 at 11:08 am by Mike Daniels in General Birding

Membership

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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 id@devonbirds.org.

Posted June 30th, 2016 at 9:24 pm by George & Julia Harris in General Birding

Saturday 7th April 2018

Ford Park Cemetery, Plymouth

Male blackcap seen in the cemetery this afternoon.

22 magpies also present, some of which mobbed a passing sparrowhawk.

Travelling swiftly north 3 swallows spotted over Central Park.

Posted April 7th at 10:59 pm by LIZ HARRIS in General Birding

Osprey, Taw estuary

14.20: Osprey, static on post in front of Chivenor for lengthy period, finally took off and flew downstream over Crowpoint.

Other birds of interest: White Wagtail on Horsey Marsh, 2 Spoonbill, one on Horsey scrape, the other flying down estuary (13.20) towards Northampton burrows.

Posted April 7th at 10:24 pm by Jonathan Nicholl in General Birding

Wrafton etc.

Finally saw a Blackcap today! A fine singing male. Along the Tarka Trail near Tesco (Braunton) a few more around Wrafton Pond. Still 9 drake Shoveler there.

Willow Warblers and Chiffchaffs also, and in the reserve.

However most of the Hirundines were over the Sherpa Marsh area. At least 2 House Martins amongst loads of Sand Martins and good numbers of Swallows.. As I completed the circuit of the Marsh an odd-looking bird on the water resolved into a moulting Grebe - Slavonian or Black-necked. Needless to say Telescope and Camera at home. Went back later and it had moved to the main pond at Sherpa (just over the river from the Toll House). It looks as if it is more likely to be Slavonian. Either would be a good record here.

I have sent pics to Mike Langman. Will post here when he replies....

Posted April 7th at 9:57 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Lundy

A full round-up of sightings from the island for 1-6 April can be found here.

Posted April 7th at 9:37 pm by Tim Jones in General Birding

Yarner Woods

Willow Warbler, Chaffinch, Bullfinch, Coal Tit, Marsh Tit, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Siskin, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Mallard.

Posted April 7th at 9:27 pm by Chris Godfrey in General Birding

Exminster Marsh

Thursdays adult winter Little Gull refound by JD this afternoon activily feeding on both Powderham Marsh and Exminster Lagoon- still present 4pm, but also disappearing for periods of time. Also 6-8 House Martins, 1+ Swallow, 35-40 Sand Martins.

Posted April 7th at 6:18 pm by Mark Bailey in General Birding

Start Point

Small fall of around 30 Willow Warblers this morning. Also a few Swallows arriving and a Firecrest in the farm.

Posted April 7th at 5:29 pm by Perry Sanders in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Berry Head

Lone Swallow mid morning over the south Fort

Posted April 7th at 4:27 pm by Tim Clyburn in General Birding

Soar Mill Valley

Merlin over low and fast also Willow Warbler, 3 Blackcap, 4 Swallow & 2 Red-legged Partridge.

Posted April 7th at 3:47 pm by Rob Macklin in General Birding

Rillage Pt to Watermouth

A dry slot this morning between heavy rain first thing and persistent clag and drizzle (that has only just started to lift at 15.30) was long enough to show that there had been quite a fall of warblers, but too short to really get in amongst them before they all took to cover again. Minima of 11 Chiffchaffs, 10 Willow Warblers and 10 Blackcaps. 62 Swallows W along the cliffs, including a single pod of 22. 1 passing Sandwich Tern offshore.

Posted April 7th at 3:38 pm by Tim Jones in General Birding

Exminster Marshes

A walk to the Turf late morning coincided with a couple of light showers and during each shower lots of swallows (100s) and a few sand martins appeared. When the tide was high there were about 100 curlew, a few snipe and redshank roosting alongside 85 shelduck. The only other duck of note was a single gadwall. 

In Station Road there was a noticeable fall of blackcaps, willow warblers and chiffchaffs. On the canal bank a sedge warbler sang briefly (this bird was present yesterday).

Posted April 7th at 3:35 pm by John Waldon in General Birding

Plym Estuary

The Red-necked Grebe still around by the Green House. Also a late Jack Snipe, 4 Goosanders (1 drake), Common Sandpiper, Dipper, 8 Stock Doves, Greenshank, Sparrowhawk, Great Spotted Woodpecker & 2 Blackcaps.

Posted April 7th at 1:03 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Friday 6th April 2018

Sandwich Tern Passage

Substantial Sandwich Tern passage on Tuesday (both morning and afternoon) round Start Point.  Average some 5 birds/hr.   Many circled to feed with usual sea birds, a pod of Porpoises and a couple of Seals fishing around the rocks off the point.

Tern caught a Sand Eel. A struggle ensued Tern dropped its catch
Tern caught a Sand Eel.                          A struggle ensued                      Tern dropped its catch

Posted April 6th at 10:51 pm by Michael Woodman Smith in General Birding

Exmouth area

An Osprey over the Exe estuary at 1550hrs, over the deep water channel between Cockwood and Starcross seen from the Exe Trail near Mudbank Lane, Exmouth. Also 20 Pale-bellied Brent Geese off West Lodge a little later, but mobile.

Earlier, a Swallow over Cedar Close and a singing male Blackcap at Bystock Reserve near the end of St John's Road. Lots of singing Chiffchaffs now in around the area.

Posted April 6th at 10:26 pm by Terry Smith in General Birding

Galmpton

A couple of smart White Wagtails were feeding in a field with a pile of manure towards Hillhead by the false mobile phone mast tree.

       White Wag Hillhead 060418 ML  White Wag male Hillhead 060418 ML

Posted April 6th at 8:54 pm by Mike Langman in General Birding

Wrafton

Wrafton Pond and the scrape devoid of Hirundines when I got there at about 5.45 this evening, but 1 Black-tailed Godwit, 1 Greenshank and 2 Redshank on the scrape. 2 Gadwall in the reserve. Over Sherpa Marsh a  big mixed flock of Sand Martins (200?) and Swallows (100?) were a bit skittish and twice disappeared before drifting back over the reeds and water. Could discern any House Martins amongst them.

Posted April 6th at 8:46 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Swallows

Two Swallows seen over Ivybridge late this afternoon and a little later one over Rattery has spring arrived at last?

Posted April 6th at 8:33 pm by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Stover

Great views of a Water Rail feeding close to the path on the north side of the lake this afternoon. Still 3 Goosanders (pair plus a drake) and also a pair of Mandarins. About half a dozen Swallows and 4 Sand Martins paused briefly to feed.

Water Rail Stover Goosander drake Stover Mandarin pair Stover

                   Water Rail                                             Goosander                                           Mandarin Ducks

Posted April 6th at 7:06 pm by Dave Smallshire in General Birding

Plym Estuary

A great day with Martin's Red-necked Grebe (in partial summer plumage) still around, initially at the top of the estuary, then at the lower end after being flushed by a speed boat. Three Garganey (2 drakes) appeared on the estuary opposite the railway sidings, flew up river and then later in the day, were resting on the mud slightly further up - thanks Roy! Also a Fieldfare (rare here even in winter, outside snowy conditions), Snipe, Red-breasted Merganser (drake), Goosander (redhead), Swallow belting north and Green Woodpecker. 

Posted April 6th at 6:34 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Hexworthy

5 swallows flying west; first blackcap singing.

Posted April 6th at 6:04 pm by Richard Hibbert in General Birding

Southcott Valley, Bideford

After a day birding around Aylesbeare Common and the Exe, the best was close to home at Southcott Valley late afternoon. It was overcast but calm, and my first sizable flock of Hirundines was present, 20+ Sand Martins, and 8 Swallow. There was a White Wagtail among the Pieds, and surprisingly a pristine male Yellow Wagtail.. The 9 Ruff were also still present.

Posted April 6th at 5:27 pm by Roger Doble in General Birding

Sandwich Tern, Fishcombe, Brixham

Single Sandwich Tern looking for fish in Fishcombe Cove, Brixham this afternoon.

Sandwich Tern
Sandwich Tern

Posted April 6th at 5:14 pm by Bill Coulson in General Birding

Plym Estuary

Garganey (3) - at 12:45 near the rowing club (viewed from Blagdon's Meadow). Was not seen during visit at 16:00.

Red-Necked Grebe (1) - seen from Blagdon's Meadow at 16:00. Very elusive, spending long periods underwater, short periods on the surface. 

Skylark also seen.

At Portworthy - six Swallow and two Sand Martin feeding over the main lake at 17:00.

Posted April 6th at 5:13 pm by Chris E in General Birding

Rillage Pt to Watermouth

Yesterday (5th) was very quiet at Rillage, but there was a superb breeding-plumaged Red-throated Diver feeding and preening a little way offshore. By contrast, plenty of migrants on the move this morning (6th): 4 Sandwich Terns, 1 Common Tern, 25 Swallows, 10 Sand Martins, 4 House Martins, 3 Goldcrests, 8 Chiffchaffs, 3 Blackcaps, a female-type Black Redstart, 2m Stonechats, 31 Meadow Pipits, 9 alba wagtails, 4 Siskins, 56 Goldfinches and 50 Linnets.

Later on, 2 Red Kites drifting E over the Sterridge Valley at about 12.15.

Posted April 6th at 2:53 pm by Tim Jones in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Red-necked Grebe

At 1300 still North of Laira bridge. In front of Chelsea Meadow recycling facility

Posted April 6th at 1:17 pm by neil moore in General Birding

Thursday 5th April 2018

Meldon Hill, Chagford

Numerous carrion crows, 3 meadow pipits. 2 yellowhammers and 2 skylarks singing in the morning sun. Lovely.

Posted April 5th at 9:54 pm by Ian Muir in General Birding

Lower Tamar Lake

Sightings this afternoon.

1 Willow Warbler, 4f Goosander, 1 Willow Tit (Leusistic)

Posted April 5th at 7:39 pm by Rod Mudge in General Birding

Wrafton Pond & scrape + Baggy

Early this morning there were 4 Black tailed Godwits on Wrafton scrape, 30 minutes later there were 18, one in sum plum.

Then to Baggy where there were 6 Wheatear (4m + 2fm) + 1 Swallow.

18.00 - Wrafton Pond again where there were 2 House Martins in amongst some Swallows & Sand Martins

Photo showing leg colour of Willow Warbler

   

Posted April 5th at 7:27 pm by Rob Jutsum in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Wrafton/Velator

Several Willow warblers and Chiffs around the pond this morning, and 18 Black-tailed Godwits out on the scrape - one in cracking sum plum!

2 Swallows and a Sand Martin on the way across the field to the reserve, where Chiff and Willow Warbler both present.

Posted April 5th at 7:19 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Belliver

I5 Bramblings mostly males.

Posted April 5th at 7:09 pm by Chris Buckland in General Birding

Dartmoor today

Grt Mis Tor five N Weaters,males singing.

Posted April 5th at 7:07 pm by Chris Buckland in General Birding

Morte Point

Further to the report by Derek Stacy 14 Sandwich Terns towards Bull Point and four gannets,glad you saw the willow warbler Derek.

Posted April 5th at 6:15 pm by john elvin in General Birding

Red Kite

Over Plympton garden at 18:10. Flying east, reasonably low. 

Posted April 5th at 6:14 pm by Chris E in General Birding

Powderham Marsh

I started this afternoon with  visit to Exminster Marshes largely to see if the Cattle Egrets were still there (they weren't). Then I went the other side of the railway line to visit Powderham Marsh,  I had nice views of a Little Gull (adult winter plumage), a small group of Sand Martins passing through and a Green Sandpiper.  And  The path is extremely muddy, so you will need wellies - and a good scope.

Posted April 5th at 6:14 pm by Richard Swinbank in General Birding

Red Necked Grebe, River Plym

Red Necked Grebe on River Plym below Laira Bridge before moving upriver under bridge on the incoming tide - record shots attached, spending little time at the surface and  taken into sunlight.

    

Posted April 5th at 5:53 pm by Stuart Green in General Birding

Kingsbridge Estuary

Nine Sandwich terns in the Bag and Harbour area today, together with two red-breasted mergansers, one Egyptian goose, one kingfisher and 30 shelduck, 15 oystercatchers, 7 herons and  25 little egrets. 

Posted April 5th at 5:18 pm by Chris Klee in General Birding

Berry Head

2 Black redstarts in the quarry best viewed from the top opposite the cafe Also 1 swallow over the car park. Chiff chaff singing in the quarry and in the trees behind hardy's battery. i was told of wheatear but did not see them

Jeff Hacon

Posted April 5th at 4:26 pm by Jeff hacon in General Birding

Morte Point

A walk around Morte Point this morning was rewarded with first Willow Warbler (1) and House Martin (1) for this location also Wheatear (3) and Swallow (3). 29 species recorded but in disappointingly low counts.

Posted April 5th at 3:11 pm by Derek Stacey in General Birding

Plym Estuary

At 1300hrs a Red-necked Grebe seen on the Estuary, just off Arnold’s Point.

Posted April 5th at 1:02 pm by Martin Phillips in General Birding

Red Kite

One Red Kite watched for a while over Burrator and Dousland. 04.04.18

Making it’s way North.

Posted April 5th at 8:12 am by Innes in General Birding

Wednesday 4th April 2018

Stover

Got soaked this morning at Stover but I did see a Willow Warbler by the raised walkway that was singing half-heartedly. 1 Swallow and 1 Sand Martin over the lake.

Posted April 4th at 10:40 pm by Nick Potter in General Birding

Meeth Reserve

50+ Swallows and Sand Martins, probably slightly more Swallows and at least 1 House Martin over the large gravel pit at DWT Meeth Reserve this evening.

Posted April 4th at 9:26 pm by Ali & Andy in General Birding

Velator

At last a good number of Swallows and Sand Martins around the reserve and over the scrape. Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff in the reserve.

Posted April 4th at 8:30 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Lower Tamar Lake

Sightings for this morning,

2 Leusistic Willow Tit, 2 Swallow, 13 Tufted Duck, 3 Reed Bunting 2m 1f, 2 Marsh Tit, 1 Treecreeper, 2 Wren,1 Jay, 2 Grey Heron, 2 Nuthatch, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker,1 Stoat.

Leusistic Willow Tit
Leusistic Willow Tit

Posted April 4th at 7:32 pm by Rod Mudge in General Birding

Hope's Nose

13.30-16.00

Further to the earlier post, the juv/fw Iceland Gull seen at 15.00 on the wave cut platform on the headland to the south of The Lead Stone.  It was amongst Herring Gulls and showed well for 2-3 mins before flying off low in the direction of Thatcher Rock - not relocated. 

1 Med Gull in almost full breeding/summer plumage close to the sewage outfall.  10+ Gannets, 40+ Guillemots on the ledges of The Orestone and on the sea, 2 Rock Pipits (one performing song flights), 2 Stonechats, 1 Raven, 1 Sandwich Tern, 1 Swallow in off the sea, 1 Pheasant, 1 Kestrel, 3 Fulmars, 3 Goldfinches and 3 Common Scoters headed for Torbay.  2 Chiffchaffs in full song calling from the scrub.  Multiple GBBGs, Oystercatchers, Shags and Cormorants.

A nosey Grey Seal also put in an appearance late on. 

Posted April 4th at 7:30 pm by Paul Darlington in General Birding

Exminster Marsh

3 Cattle Egrets viewable from Station Road just up from the industrial estate late afternoon. Please note that the bends by the second car park are flooded. Also a few Swallow and Sand Martin flying through and the 2 Snow Geese of unknown origin. Thanks to the chap that pull the alert out about the Egrets

More details  http://dixiesbirding.blogspot.co.uk/?m=1

Posted April 4th at 6:52 pm by Spencer Dicks in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Dawlish Warren

Visited DW with Rupert & Dick good views of the Iceland Gull, Eider Duck, Grey Plover, Knot, juv. Med Gull 4 x Sandwich Tern & 2 x Northern Diver. all showing very well. Returned via the rear of Powderham Castle where a Cattle Egret was found with several Little Egrets.

Great Northern Diver Iceland Gull & Eider Duck  Knot with Grey Plover
Great Northern Diver                                      Iceland Gull & Eider Duck          Knot with Grey Plover

Posted April 4th at 5:23 pm by Derek Carter in General Birding

Dawlish Warren

11 members of  DB attended the (East Devon) fieldtrip and listed c. 44 species for the morning. Most notable were singing Chiffchaffs, Gt spotted Woodpecker and a Cirl Bunting in the woodland areas.  3 Turnstone were on the beach and 2 Gt Norther Divers off the entrance to the estuary.  From the hide 12 Grey Plover, 2 Knot and a first year Med. Gull were present on the island while on the opposite side of The Bight a juvenile Eider Duck was found amongst gulls (Gt Black-backed and a single Lesser B-b Gull). Later, two of our group ventured further east along the dunes and an Iceland Gull was found from a different angle. A couple of Sandwich Terns and a Gt crested Grebe put in a brief appearance and a few Mergansers scoped at a distance. An enjoyable morning in spite of the  road closer at Cockwood and a heavy rain shower as we returned to the car park.  (The car park fee goes up to summer rate later this week!).

Posted April 4th at 4:14 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in General Birding

Plym Estuary

3 Greenshanks, Snipe, Green Woodpecker, 3 Blackcaps including a singing male and 6 Stock Doves.

Later, Willow Warbler in my garden (Mount Gould).

 

Posted April 4th at 3:09 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Berry Head - 3.4.18

Sorry, late post from yesterday, am (3rd) but not much to report:

1 Willow Warbler (singing from cover) near main path, junction car park/quarry/cafe; 1 Chiffchaff & 1 Blackcap in quarry.

Sea watch (07:45 - 10:00): 30 Manx Shearwaters > S; 2 Puffins > S; 2 Sandwich Terns > N; 1 Gt N Diver > NE +  c. 12 Common Dolphin & several Harbour Porpoise close in to the head

Posted April 4th at 12:49 pm by Dave Holloway in General Birding

Hopes Nose

Hopes Nose 730-1030am - juv/fw Iceland Gull in sewage outfall from 930am and showing well - also 3 Puffin south (8am and 2 at 835am), 7 Med Gulls ( 4ad, 2w, 2fw), 5 Sandwich Terns, 190 Manxies , 2 RTDivers, 10 Common Scoter south and 14 north

Posted April 4th at 11:32 am by Mark Bailey in General Birding

Rillage Point to Watermouth

06.40 to 08.30: A loose flock of 8 Sandwich Terns and – surprisingly early given the generally late start to migration – a single Common Tern, all feeding close in. Another influx of grounded passerines, including 3 Goldcrests, 12 Chiffchaffs, 5 Willow Warblers, 2 Blackcaps (both f). Overhead visible migration limited by the frequent showers but included 1 Swallow, 4 Sand Martins, 4 alba wagtails, just 8 Meadow Pipits, 17 Linnets and a Greenfinch.

Posted April 4th at 11:18 am by Tim Jones in General Birding

Tuesday 3rd April 2018

Wrafton Pond

One of the several Willow Warblers in the willows around the pond this am.

Posted April 3rd at 9:22 pm by Rob Jutsum in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Plymouth (Mount Gould)

A pair of Siskins on my garden feeders this morning; the male also visited briefly last night.

Posted April 3rd at 7:08 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Exeter area

A Red Kite near Haldon, 2 Green Sandpipers &15+ Snipe at Matford Ponds and Willow Warbler and a pair of Wheatears at Exminster Marsh.

Posted April 3rd at 6:59 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Rillage Point

06.30-08.30 Easily the busiest morning of the spring so far for migrants. Minimum 15 Chiffchaffs & 6 Willow Warblers, single Blackcap, Swallow & Sand Martin, plus 66 Meadow Pipits, 11 alba wagtails, 14 Siskins, 7 Linnets, 1 Reed Bunting and a passing Curlew. Also 2 Coal Tits and 3 Collared Doves (site rarities!) that appeared to be migrants.

Posted April 3rd at 6:56 pm by Tim Jones in General Birding

Willow Tit

I ventured all the way to Cornwall border, Lower Tamar lake, where with the experienced help of Rod Mudge I was able to separate Marsh Tit from Willow Tit. Very satisfying. Thanks Rod. 

Posted April 3rd at 6:52 pm by Sam Forest in General Birding

Wrafton pond & Sharpa pond

am - Paula had a fall of 10 Willow Warblers this morning all in a small area, 6 in one Willow.

17.15 - 4 Swallows + 17 Sand Martins over Sharpa pond & reed beds.

Posted April 3rd at 6:01 pm by Rob Jutsum in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Berry Head Quarry

Waiting for Wheatear in Berry Head Quarry this afternoon and 3 flew in, 2 m and 1 f, and stopped for at least half an hour above the fishing quay. Thought they weren't coming.  Also a Rock Pipit on a nearby post.

Wheatear    Rock Pipit
Wheatear                               Rock Pipit

Posted April 3rd at 5:41 pm by Bill Coulson in General Birding

Velator

Late afternoon visit to the reserve - no Chiffchaffs (all moved on by this time of day?) But a WIllow Warbler gave itself away with that delightful song. Found it and followed it across the reserve. Lovely. Also 2 Swallows flew over later on.

Posted April 3rd at 5:38 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Chambercombe

Sparrowhawk with Feral Pigeon kill in the back yard this afternoon. 

14.11  14.34
14.11                                     14.34

Posted April 3rd at 5:23 pm by Derek Stacey in General Birding

Chiffchaffs-Charleton

In 2017 I closely monitored certain bird species in the Charleton parish. I've been looking at my Chiffchaff records for 2017 and 2018 on the East Charleton 1km square SX7642 which is the square, not surprising since it is on my doorstep, that has the most consistent recording effort from early in the season.

In 2017 between 22/03 and 31/03 I recorded 10 Chiffchaff territories with established singing males on them. There was a female (determined by behaviour) on one by the 28/03 and females on two others by 03/04.

For the corresponding period in 2018 I have recorded 2 Chiffchaff territories with established singing males on them (neither sings for any length of time) and no females have been seen to date (03/04).

Posted April 3rd at 3:06 pm by Barrie Whitehall in General Birding

Soar Mill Valley

A small improvement this morning with 6 Chiffchaffs inc.5 singing plus a pair of Blackcaps - first arrivals, they don't winter in the coastal scrub. Also Red-legged Partridge "singing".

Non-avian: 7 Roe Deer inc.3 antlered males & one in velvet plus three females. 2 Peacocks.

Posted April 3rd at 1:53 pm by Rob Macklin in General Birding

Uffculme

Three Sand Martins on the Culm at midday.

Posted April 3rd at 1:52 pm by Geoff Campbell in General Birding

South Brent ~ Hawfinch

I thought the day had started well around the garden feeders when one of two female Brambling showed up around the feeders, along with Bullfinch, Song Thrush, Long Tailed Tit (collecting nesting material) Canadian Geese and Heron overhead a Mallard dropping onto the field pond, two Green Woodpeckers calling and a GSWP drumming.

Resident pair of Buzzard displaying, drawing attention from a Raven and a third Buzzard.

And then just after mid day a female Hawfinch on the ground under the feeders, a garden first for me and a village rarity to say the least, it has now been around the feeders for just over an hour so far....... a real treat.

And earlier in the morning a trip to the vets in Totnes to collect an injured female Barn owl that had been found on the road 200 yards outside of Broadhempston on the road from Red Post, the bird has two fractures to the ulna of its right wing but will hopefully make a full recovery.

 

Posted April 3rd at 1:46 pm by Steve Hopper in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Brixham

This dull Black Redstart is a male - it sang for a short period (females don't sing) making it a cairei plumage type.

It was on the corner of Ranscombe Close Brixham yesterday 2 April.. 

              male cairei Black Redstart Brixham 2 April 2018 ML male cairei Black Redstart Brixham 2 April 2018 ML

Posted April 3rd at 9:41 am by Mike Langman in General Birding

Monday 2nd April 2018

Tarka Trail - Yelland

Lone swallow at 5.30 pm flying towards Instow 

Posted April 2nd at 10:42 pm by Paul Bearman in General Birding

Iceland gull Slapton

a lovely 1st winter (faded Spring) Iceland gull lingering off the outflow at the very south end of Slapton beach all afternoon today. Also, ring-necked duck still at Beesands Ley this morn. B of c shot of Iceland attached

Posted April 2nd at 8:28 pm by Alex carlisle in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Plymouth

1 Chiffchaff feeding in the garden (first of the year)

Posted April 2nd at 6:56 pm by R Hurrell in General Birding

Plymouth Sound

At least 17 Sandwich terns (one eventually gave up a freshly caught fish to several chasing gulls), 11 Oystercatchers and 6 Turnstones.

Posted April 2nd at 6:54 pm by R Hurrell in General Birding

Beesands Ley

Good views of Scaup and Ringed-necked Duck with the Tufted Ducks, no sign of Red-necked Grebe at mid-day

Ring-necked Duck  Scaup with male and female Tufted Ducks
Ring-necked Duck                                    Scaup with male and female Tufted Ducks

Posted April 2nd at 6:50 pm by Simon Thurgood in General Birding

Budleigh Salterton

Late afternoon walk down to the Otter estuary produced 3 Manx Shearwaters (W) past Otter head, a Peregrine perched high in the 'Owl' tree in the estuary and 3 Sand Martins over the scrapes. 

Posted April 2nd at 6:21 pm by Paul Reynolds in General Birding

Kingsbridge Estuary

West Charleton Marsh / Bay, 15:00-17:30

Spoonbill and Red-breasted Merganser in the bay, 2 Teals, 2 Wigeons on the marsh and a couple showy Water Rails in front of the hide below the bird feeders.

Posted April 2nd at 6:07 pm by Perry Sanders in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Spring arrivals

On our daily dog walk around the Kenwith Valley reserve in Bideford this morning, the water level was higher than I have ever seen it, with at least half of the lake circuit pathway under about 30 -50 cms of water. With a female Sparrowhawk high over the lake, we spotted our first Sedge Warblers (3) and the first Reed Warbler in amongst the Phragmites - The high water level made it much easier to see the birds from the  raised bank section because they were all easily spotted against the background of heightened lake water

Posted April 2nd at 3:30 pm by Tony Mercer in General Birding

Rillage Point to Watermouth

Finally a small arrival of long-distance migrants, including 1 Sandwich Tern, 2 male Wheatears, 3 Willow Warblers (one singing) and a Chiffchaff. Small numbers of Meadow Pipits (26) and alba Wagtails (4) passing over between the drizzly showers.

Posted April 2nd at 3:07 pm by Tim Jones in General Birding

River Plym

A quick walk from Marsh Mills to Blaxton Meadow and back this morning on the dropping tide - redshank, curlew and oystercatcher with 5 greenshank and 1 common sandpiper, 1 male and 5 redhead goosander, 7 common gulls amongst the H,GBB,LBB and BH gulls on the mudflats, 1 stock dove, 2 chiffchaffs singing, a songflighting greenfinch and 1 willow warbler

Posted April 2nd at 2:42 pm by Stuart Green in General Birding

Velator

Only 2 Chiffchaffs in the reserve today. However, the pond is proving an attraction: 2 Little Grebes, 4 Gadwall, 4 Mallard 2 Moorhens and a Coot, along with the Canada Geese pair taking over the island.

The incredibly tatty female Marsh Harrier was again at Sherpa Marsh and circled up and back over the reserve before departing west towards Saunton.

Posted April 2nd at 1:38 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Black Redstart

Male Black Redstart spotted today in Broadclyst garden.

Posted April 2nd at 1:28 pm by Nigel in General Birding

Osprey - Taw Estuary

10.30  - 1 Osprey flying past Isley Marsh on the south side of the Estuary being mobbed by Herring Gulls.

Posted April 2nd at 12:25 pm by Rob Jutsum in Scarce / Rare Birds & Passage Counts

Garden birds - Brixham

Firecrest in the garden this morning, plus pair of Blackcaps and pair of Bullfinches (both pairs regulars)....first Chiffchaffs of the year also.

Posted April 2nd at 10:41 am by Trevor Leaman in General Birding

Totnes Arboretum

Morning walk's best bird was a treecreeper. Also at least two chiffchaff, 3 song thrush, blackbird, robin, blue tit, great tit, wren, greenfinch, goldfinch, chaffinch, greater spotted woodpecker, magpie, carrion crow, wood pigeon, jackdaw.

5 bramblings still using the garden plus goldfinches, bullfinch x2  and blackcap. 

Posted April 2nd at 10:31 am by nathanflyfly in General Birding

Sunday 1st April 2018

Topsham Cemetery

I was there today early afternoon and unfortunately there were no Hawfinches to be seen, but was surprised to see a Marsh Harrier circling and drifting slowly north up the Clyst marshes viewed from the end of the cemetery (female-type). Guessing the same one as has been seen elsewhere on the Exe.

Posted April 1st at 10:06 pm by Perry J Smale in General Birding

Wrafton/Velator

During my outing to the various ponds this afternoon, I met a man on the Tarka Trail who was from Gloucestershire who admitted to working at Minsmere, lucky man. He had seen and heard one Chiffchaff by Wrafton Pond, but nought else of note. He had seen an Osprey in Gloucestershire recently, and I commented that the best way to find one here is to listen for all the Gulls shouting!

As I completed my circuit of the reserve along the southern boundary there was just such a commotion over Marstage Farm and on scanning to see what they were complaining about - an Osprey was circling and ignoring them all! Unfortunately it drifted with the wind off towards Saunton, so I was unable to get good views. This was at about 2.40 p.m. Other migrants in the reserve were just 3 Chiffchaffs hawking insects over the pond.

Once again, the rain had me heading home.

Posted April 1st at 5:05 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Wrafton Pond

06.50 - 0715 - An early frost free start this am produced up to 6 Chiffchaffs ,3 Willow Warblers & a Blackcap around the pond but no sign of any Sand Martins, Swallows or House Martins. Several other species to hear & see on & around the pond but so far very few migrants.

I do hope the weather will warm up soon. 

Posted April 1st at 4:23 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

Dartmeet

A number of yellowhammers ( up to 5) feeding at the car park at Dartmeet this morning.

Yellowhammers
Yellowhammers

Posted April 1st at 3:59 pm by Vince Bedford in General Birding

Wembury

0830-1200:

1 singing Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap, 1 Water pipit near the sewage pipe, 5 Rock pipit, 3 Little egret in the rock pools.

Posted April 1st at 1:45 pm by Alan Livsey in General Birding

Mansands

A lone Swallow down by the marsh at Mansands this morning. Flying amongst the sheep looking for insects then flew up by the hide and not seen again till about an hour later just above the sheep across the marsh from the hide. 2 Cetti's Warbler seen, 1 by the hide and the other in the reeds by the beach. 2 Canada Geese and 3 Tufted Duck. Also 2 Water Rail calling but not seen and 1 Chiffchaff calling.  Are we going to have a big fall soon!!!!

Posted April 1st at 1:29 pm by Nigel Smallbones in General Birding

East Soar

Just one singing Chiffchaff o/wise dire. Movements were 8 Jackdaw E & 4 Goldfinch W. Needs to warm up sharpish!!

Posted April 1st at 12:20 pm by Rob Macklin in General Birding

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