General Birding

Missing Devon rarity records 2018

Unfortunately no descriptions have been submitted for the following records of ‘A’ species reported in 2018. This means, 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.

If anyone saw 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.

Chough Northam 17-18 July  

Corn Bunting Beer Head 25 August

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 Shearwater (2) Berry Head 20 September

Great White Egret (2) Bridge Marsh, Axe Estuary 13 January

Great White Egret Black Hole Marsh, Axe Estuary 22 August

Great White Egret Exminster Marshes 30 March

Great White Egret Exmouth 06 May

Great White Egret Stover 01 October

Honey-buzzard Dartmoor 21-22 May

Little Bunting Slapton 21 October

Montagu’s Harrier Dartmoor 19 Aug

Pectoral Sandpiper Upper Tamar Lake 13 August

Ring-necked Duck Lee Moor 14 October

Rose-coloured Starling Beesands 27-28 August

Serin South Hallsands 24 April

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


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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

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

Saturday 7th July 2018

Heddon’s mouth

Two little egrets flying west offshore at 5.30pm.  

Posted July 7th, 2018 at 10:36 pm by Paul Bearman in General Birding

Friday 6th July 2018

Kingsbridge Estuary

7 Greenshanks in Frogmore Creek.

Posted July 6th, 2018 at 5:02 pm by Rob Macklin in General Birding

Plym Estuary & Saltram

Best session on the patch for a while. At Blaxton, summer plumaged Black-tailed Godwit and a Whimbrel with 31 Curlews, 7 Mediterranean Gulls (2 each of 2nd & 1st summers and 3 ads) with c345 Black-headed Gulls including 11 juvs, 7 Little Egrets, 2 Stock Doves and a Whitethroat. Also: Kingfisher, 10 Mandarin Ducks, female Red-crested Pochard, Common Sandpiper, first returning Little Grebe, pair of Shelducks with 2 ducklings, my first Spotted Flycatchers (2) of the year here & 2 Roe Deer.  

Posted July 6th, 2018 at 3:04 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Broadsands ~ gulls


Seven Mediterranean Gulls this morning four adults and three first summer birds none of them ringed.

40 plus Black Head Gulls including two juveniles.


Three Whimbrell flew in and landed with the smaller gulls.

Two juvenile Pied wagtails.


Posted July 6th, 2018 at 11:29 am by Steve Hopper in General Birding

Thursday 5th July 2018

Steps Bridge - Clifford Bridge - Mardon Down

Dipper, Marsh Tit, Treecreeper, Spotted Flycatcher, Garden Warbler, Tree Pipit, Crossbill, Redpoll. (Also Adder).

Posted July 5th, 2018 at 9:03 pm by James Camden in General Birding

Ilfracombe Rocks

Today a passage of 12 Med Gulls in half an hour. Among the Herring Gulls loafing on the rocks & in the stream several with Darvic rings. 

Lesser Black-backed Gull, Sub adult @ boating lakeNorth Coast KestrelsNorth Coast Kestrels
Lesser Black-backed Gull, Sub adult @ boating lake                        North Coast Kestrels   

Posted July 5th, 2018 at 7:28 pm by Martin Thorne in General Birding

Bowling Green Marsh and Goosemoor

Two Med. Gulls at BGM and the Spotted Redshank at Goosemoor

Grey Heron StretchingSpotted Redshank, Redshank+Black-tailed GodwitsBlack-tailed Godwits+Black-headed Gull
Grey Heron Stretching    Sptted Redshank, Redshank+Blk-tGodwits               Bl-tGodwits+Blk-hd Gull

Posted July 5th, 2018 at 3:48 pm by Colin Scott in General Birding


Scanned the beaches this morning with Pete Dennis, no Yellow-legged Gulls today but Preston: 1 ad Mediterranean Gull. Goodrington: 1 fs Med Gull. Broadsands: 1 fs, 1 ss & 1 ad Med Gull also perhaps even more unusual at this time of year in SW 2 fs Common Gulls. A small flock of 8 Common Scoter flew past out into the mist off Preston.

Posted July 5th, 2018 at 1:25 pm by Mike Langman in General Birding

Hartland Point

Overnight Storm Petrel ringing in perfect conditions at Hartland Point produced 57 new birds - the best ever total for this species at this site. One control.  We also stayed on to see if there was anything else around in the early morning. 9 Linnet and a few each of Chiffchaff and Whitethroat. 1 Willow Warbler.

Posted July 5th, 2018 at 11:12 am by Jon Turner in General Birding

Wednesday 4th July 2018

Plym Estuary & Saltram

Whimbrel, 33 Curlews, Oystercatcher, Common Sandpiper, Kingfisher, 9 Little Egrets, 7 juv Black-headed Gulls, pair of Shelducks with 2 ducklings, 2 Shags, 6 Stock Doves, Whitethroat, 23 Mandarin Ducks, Green Woodpecker, 12+ Marbled Whites & 3 Small Skippers..

Posted July 4th, 2018 at 10:17 pm by Pete Aley in General Birding

Nightjar churring

Nightjar churring recording, East hill

Posted July 4th, 2018 at 3:43 pm by Jon Tagg in General Birding

Bolt Head to Bolt Tail

Breeding bunting news:

Yellowhammer at 67 pairs, up 29% on 2017.

Reed Bunting 1 pair - first breeding record since I began recording in 2012.

Cirl bunting at 39 pairs - down from the record 46 in 2017 but still holding up well.

But: declines for Stonechat, Wheatear, Rock Pipit, Sedge Warbler.

Slight increases for Blackcap, Reed Warbler.

A mixed bag but generally good results taking in the effects of the two cold spells in March.

Posted July 4th, 2018 at 1:58 pm by Rob Macklin in General Birding

Thornhill Head, North Devon

Over the last week have been watching the number of Jackdaws increasing at our feeders. This morning 20 to 25 with a lot of youngsters demanding food and generally being very boisterous. Fat balls are demolished from the feeder in next to no time with a melee on the ground underneath. There have been a few fairly aggressive fights with birds ending up on their backs and our resident pheasant looking quite harrassed as it tries to feed.  No other birds get a look-in.

Interesting reaction this morning by 2 grey squirrels when male sparrowhawk landed on fence next to the feeders. One up the tree flattened itself against the trunk for several minutes before slinking away. Other on the ground didn't see it and continued feeding despite all the birds disappearing/alarm calling. Sparrowhawk hopped to where it could properly see squirrel, appeared uninterested and started preening. Squirrel then hopped up to same level as sparrowhawk noticed it was there and they both eyeballed each other 3-4 feet apart for what seemed ages. They seemed to then both decide that neither was of interest nor a threat - squirrel went back to ground to feed and sparrowhawk carried on preening, then missed a bird (I think great tit) in tree above.

Posted July 4th, 2018 at 9:37 am by Mark West in General Birding

Tuesday 3rd July 2018

Exminster 'Scarce Chaser'

I'm afraid this is a Black-tailed Skimmer.

Posted July 3rd, 2018 at 7:08 pm by Dave Smallshire in General Birding

Cranbrook (New Town) Nr Exeter.

The forth and final survey (East Devon Branch) was completed at Cranbrook this morning and our best bird was a Hobby that was sighted twice (assuming it was the same bird).  A total of 57 species were counted over the winter and breeding season counts and these are of interest when compared to the earlier Bird Atlas survey which preceded the construction of the new town.  Our survey was limited to the area of the Countryside Park (which is still under development and continues to create new habitats).  The 'scrape' area opposite the railway station, which produced interesting sightings of passage waders a few years ago has now been lost to willows, rushes and dense undergrowth. Thanks to all who helped with the survey.

Posted July 3rd, 2018 at 4:54 pm by Jonathan Ruscoe in General Birding

River Yealm. Puslinch to Warren along railway track.

High tide just starting to ebb. 10 Curlew, 4 Shelduck, Raven, Garden Warbler

Heron, a number of Mallard. Gulls. Herring , Greater and Lesser BB, Black headed.

Posted July 3rd, 2018 at 3:36 pm by Jeremy Spooner in General Birding

Exminster marsh Osprey etc

Osprey on 2nd pylon North of Station Road, Peregrine on 1st pylon South of Station Road, Reed Warbs, Reed Bunting, Whitethroat juv and lots of butterflies and dragonflies.

OspreyScarce Chaser (I think)Reed Bunting
Osprey                                Scarce Chaser (I think)                             Reed Bunting

Posted July 3rd, 2018 at 1:35 pm by Martin Rooney in General Birding

Monday 2nd July 2018

Roborough Down 02-07-18

Not much to be seen on Roborough Down today, Willow Warblers, Common Redpolls, Yellow Hammers, along with the usual more common birds.

Posted July 2nd, 2018 at 4:57 pm by Greg Bradbury in General Birding

Sunday 1st July 2018


After a busy day with rain collection and family, I cycled down to the scrape this evening and the rain had done it's job - a Redshank and more importantly a Wood Sandpiper with an accompanying juvenile Black-headed Gull.Bit late for anything in the reserve, but the Geese still present and both juv Grebes too. Yesterday a Grey Heron dropped in causing panic among the baby Moorhens and a Kingfisher was attempting to fish between the duck-weed.

Posted July 1st, 2018 at 7:41 pm by Jon Turner in General Birding

Exe Powderham to Turf

During the WeBs count this morning there were 4 common sandpipers on the sea wall and a single golden plover on the shore. Single golden plovers are always worth checking and this one looked slim, fine billed and with an obvious supercilium. However when it raised its wing the underwing was white. An osprey was on top of one of the pylons on the marshes eating a fish.

Posted July 1st, 2018 at 1:09 pm by John Waldon in General Birding

Horsey Island

Photo taken early am on my way home from Horsey showing the rising tide at Horsey with Appledore & the approaching rain clouds in the distance.

Posted July 1st, 2018 at 12:40 pm by Rob Jutsum in General Birding

Osprey - Exminster Marsh

An Osprey (ringed) found early morning by JD and still late morning on top of first pylon north of Station Road .

Posted July 1st, 2018 at 12:03 pm by Mark Bailey in General Birding

churston golf course

comma b/fly y/day.  ( jellyfish stinging in elberry cove!!).

Posted July 1st, 2018 at 10:55 am by graham folkerd in General Birding

Bicton Common (East Devon)

A late evening walk last night around the common produced 2 Green Woodpeckers (one juvenile) at 21.30 and c 6 Nightjar.  The latter were widespread with churring starting around 21.55 with close sightings at Lookout Copse near Blackhill Quarry.  Some horses and cattle kept me company and the only downside were the midges and noise from a rave somewhere south! 

Note: 'NIghtjar fieldtrip' to Mutters Moor, Sidmouth is scheduled for Tues. 10 July, meeting at 21.00hrs. (East Devon Branch of Devon Birds).  Would some members observe that we are no longer the DBWPS and have not been for several years now.

Posted July 1st, 2018 at 8:56 am by Jonathan Ruscoe in General Birding

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